I was just wondering on WaniKani why there wouldnt be any practice for translating English things into japanese? Is it simply not as useful as im making it out to be? Im also using Torii on the WaniKani mode currently, and wondering I should turn off the eg to jp practice for that vocab as well, as its just not as useful maybe
Definitely useful, just not the point of the platform. It’s a kanji learning platform, and translating English to kanji doesn’t make much sense really.
Definitely learn words both ways though, because recognition (JP→EN) and production (EN→JP) are two entirely different skillsets.
If you want English to Japanese practice with the words you learn here, check out https://kaniwani.com/
It’s really good, but can also get frustrating at times. If it prompts you with a definition that could apply to multiple words in WaniKani (“girl”, “world”, “energy”, etc.) it will take either if the WK definition is exactly the same, but for even trivial differences, you have to map it to the right one, which can get annoying.
Still a very cool site that you should check out to see if it’s what you’re looking for.
This site has the focus to teach you how to read not to produce. It definitely helps though. But it’s not the main purpose.
Ahh tyty, ill definitely try kaniwani because i want to be able to produce at least all the vocab, but the whole 10k on torii doesnt work well because it does kanji in random order
First of all, welcome! Hope you have a lot of fruitful and pleasant discussions on the forums.
I don’t mean to sound gatekeep-y, but in any language, production is more about applying knowledge to context than it is about knowledge alone, and Japanese is no exception. Picking the right translation can be hard at times, especially since English and Japanese express things very differently, and honestly, I think the ideal end result should be reaching the point where we don’t need to translate anymore, and instead just seek out natural sentence ideas within our memories. It’s a good thing to want to practise and use what you learn on WK via something like KaniWani, but you’ll need examples (and maybe some explanations on nuance and usage) in order to pick the most suitable word when communicating.
This isn’t much for ‘practice’, but I guess you could search for words and phrases that contain WK vocabulary on a sentence database + dictionary like this one:
(Yes, the interface is in Japanese, but once you type something into the search bar, it works like any other dictionary, and all the example sentences are translated.)
If you have something like Anki that allows you to create custom decks, you could try picking a few simple phrases or sentences that really illustrate what a word means from the examples provided, and then try recalling those instead. Now, I don’t particularly like flashcards or inorganic sentence memorisation (I don’t use them, personally), but at least this way, you can be sure that you’re learning a decent example of how to use your new vocabulary, and you’ll be less likely to mix up different translations.
As with anything in language learning, what you ultimately do is up to you, but if you really want output practice (or at least revision) that’s based on what you’ve seen on WK, I’d suggest considering something like this so that your practice will contribute towards your actual ability to produce phrases and sentences. You could even just take the WK example sentences and chuck them into a deck if you find them helpful.
Thanks for all of this insight! I want to be able to be well read, and speak and listen to the language all pretty well. I think kaniwani would be pretty useful for me because i think at the very least its reinforcing the vocab from wanikani even more in my brain, but honestly im kind of thinking about dropping torii, as even thought it has many more vocab words in it that represent different things, i think it would be better just for my current stage to focus on the actual kanji so i can work on reading now and maybe get better at understanding the kanji and then, start do so some reading and listening of content, and just make my own anki decks based off the words i see and hear in other things. What do you think?
Translation is a skill of its own. WK is just for learning kanji and their English equivalents to be able to read. You can always try to do that in your spare time with media you enjoy too.
EN => JP is a part of other complex skills, like
- How I recall things without JP writing
- Audio quiz is possible as well, but this is different – producing the audio by yourself
- How I produce a sentence
- Still, this is just a part of sentences / phrases, isn’t it?
The quiz works well, but thinking about it, front side doesn’t really need to be EN. (And seeing EN has a cost of context switching; though I think you don’t need to worry about this early on.)
Personally, I use EN => JP for inital quizzing, but not for reinforcing long term memory (where it is done best by usage).
Thanks for this, im gonna focus on just all the wanikani content and grammar to be able to read really well, and then afterwards expand into more content and make my own flashcards for words i dont know
I also recommend reading stuff aimed at kids like コロコロコミック and practicing real reading too. It helps reinforce what you know/don’t know and maybe teaches you new grammar. Good luck!
I don’t bother with English to Japanese, myself. My custom anki decks are mainly Japanese to English too. I find it better to just see how the words are used with reading and listening. With enough exposure, words tend to just naturally go into my active vocabulary. If a word hasn’t, I try not to use it unless I absolutely need the particular word.
Even in English, the word “cohort” found its way into a conversation today. I rarely ever use it, and because of how I’ve been studying Japanese, I just felt the need to see if I used that word correctly, and I did. It just somehow got into my active vocabulary in the moment.
Not that I don’t recommend English to Japanese if it actually works for you.
If you want eng->jpn practice, I honestly recommend full production practice. That is, writing/saying sentences in Japanese. You can use words you’ve learned recently or target vocab/grammar. I’d add the additional warning that it’s probably better to practice where you can get corrections. I recommend HelloTalk, The Sentence a Day Challenge, or similar places.
Honestly just a diary in general is a great way to write your thoughts down and test what you can do. I always find words I should know but forgot the kanji or just don’t know the word, then after finding it, write it down and do again. I don’t do it every day since my schedule sometimes just doesn’t allow it, but the weeks I can do it 3+ times I can more easily get into Japanese mode.
i think kamesame is a good alternative. it gets rid of the issue with synonyms by not failing you if you dont get the exact one it wanted
Ah so for you it works to not study it, as it comes more naturally from exposure and content consumption, good to know. Also, what do you mean by that last sentence?
I’m just saying that if you find English to Japanese practices useful, then do them, despite my post.
Gotcha, thanks! I think my plan going forward at least for this summer is to do wanikani, kaniwani, bunpro for grammar, and until im comftorable with all wanikani kanji, hold off on extra vocab from torii, except I may do the kana only words as wanikani doesnt teach any of those
I think this especially sounds like a good idea. A lot of the words I know best are things for which I remember lines from anime or stuff I’ve seen elsewhere.
I use Eng->Jp in my decks not necessarily for production (though it does help) but really for enforcement of comprehension for Jp->Read/Meaning. I’ve definitely found the bit of time investment upfront in SRS levels with Eng->Jp gives me a much better Master/Burn rate. For actual production practice, there is no better practice than production itself whether conversation or writing…the vocab SRS is nothing more than an exercise but not really a demonstrative level of use of a particular word.
Having integrated Eng->Jp would have been very useful for the pile of vocab here however there are some fundamental issues that I just don’t think works; namely there is a lack of synonym dictionary builds in the system for the variety of outputs and fishing for via typing in by keyboard for the precise answer is time not well served in my experience. There is also a big difference between having it integrated within the same SRS system versus a 3rd party app, namely I can pace my lessons more appropriately by having the threshold within a single platform. Probably like many, I had great intentions of a using a 3rd party production app alongside but managing the two systems independently becomes a huge hassle for time management once the SRS was in full swing and with no real connection between the two systems, and ultimately dropping it. And I’ve taken typing out of most of my vocab studies with some exceptions giving room for Eng->Jp practice and to cover alot more content in shorter period of time even with the Eng->Jp practice. I actually find I’m more honest with my reviews this and can make an executive decision where I want to ‘practice’ again or not on the Eng->Jp side. Otherwise, I just move on to other more useful studies.