Which reading does the site want?

I am having a bit of trouble, and it’s getting me to a point of frustration. I can not tell which reading this site wants. For example, I know water is みず and すい, but when I put one in, it actually wanted the other. This has to account for like 75% of my mistakes, and it’s frustrating. I can remember both readings the site gives, but I just don’t know how to tell which one it wants. Any advice?


\textcolor{pink}{\huge \textsf{WELCOME! ^-^}}

welcome gif - crabigator

Take the time to check out the FAQ and GUIDE if you haven’t already.

There’s also a lot of good stuff on the forum to help you, like:

The Ultimate Guide for WK
The Ultimate Additional Japanese Resources List!
The New And Improved List Of API and Third Party Apps

I hope your Japanese learning journey goes well and that you enjoy your time with us on the forums.


I can see that Leebo is replying to the question and will do a much better job than me, so I leave you with just this welcome ^-^


For kanji items (pink background) you are expected to answer with the reading you were taught in the lesson. It could be the kunyomi or the onyomi. Most of the time it happens to be the onyomi. If you answer with the other category of reading, the screen will shake and you’ll be given another chance to answer. This is because the answer was not incorrect, but they just want to make sure you answer with the reading you were taught. Allowing any possible reading could lead to someone answering exclusively with very rarely used readings.

For vocabulary items (purple background) you must answer with the reading of the word that is represented. For 水 this is みず. When 水 is used as a word in a sentence, it is read as みず. If you answer with すい, this is incorrect. It is therefore marked wrong.


What they said, OP! Just wanted to chime in to say that I understand the frustration completely, but did finally get the hang of it. It takes a bit of getting used to at first, for sure, but it becomes easier to distinguish the more you do it.


Thanks for the reply. I guess eventually I will get better at remembering which reading it wants and stop tanking my Kanji lol.

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When it comes to readings, especially as used in vocabulary, it unfortunately comes down the same way as irregularities in spelling and pronunciation found in the English language; mastery only comes from practising and remembering until it sticks.


The irregularities with the readings I can get/am getting used to. I just don’t want my WK progress to slow down cause I am just not using the right reading.

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When dealing with a card with only one character on it, the main thing is to pay attention to the background color, since that is the main way you can keep apart the single kanji cards. There are more clues:

Purple is vocab, pink is kanji

The writing above the textbox will say either: vocabulary reading/meaning or kanji reading/meaning

The font size is smaller when a vocab card.

Purple vocab will always ask for a reading which can be used on its own, no okurigana or other kanji necessary. Like みず for 水.

Pink kanji can go either way, but will usually ask for a reading which can’t necessarily stand on its own. Like すい for 水 (on’yomi usually paired with other kanji), or か for 貸 (kun’yomi, but requiring okurigana to be a word, 貸す in this case).


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