[Discussion] What do you use for studying Japanese?

Hey everyone! I may not look it if you’re familiar with my wanikani profile of the same name, but I’ve been learning Japanese for quite some time. I even remember back when bunpro was just a wee little baby, and free to everyone–and the following apology emails when they unleashed subscription plans on everyone.

I was curious, what do you use for studying Japanese? Do you have a particular method?

Here’s mine (or at least, how it was before Kitsunio; I may have to tweak this!):

  1. Keep wani kani apprentice level somewhere between 25-50, by learning new lessons to that quota as I guru items. This has fallen to the wayside however as I have seasonal depression and tend to take long gaps during the winter when I don’t have the energy to study.
  2. Study from Genki and take liberal, extensive notes. Then do the assignments in the textbook with the notes for review. Each day following after, I’ll work on a section from the accompanying workbook corresponding to the lesson. This one I won’t be allowed notes. I’ll grade them all when it’s done. If the grades are less than a 90%, I’ll redo the same pattern the following week.
  3. Do duolingo lessons. I’ll only get to crown level one on each topic before moving on to the next. I stop when the information seems to “overload” me too much and get too confusing. From there, I’ll slowly work on each of the topics, moving them up in crowns. I’ll try to keep the crown level the same for each topic in the batch; I swear by never using the test-out function! As much as it is satisfying and time-saving, the tedium of working through the prompts makes the information more concrete for me. If I really think I can test out (like Hiragana, for example, when I already knew it), I make a rule that I’m not allowed to lose a single heart. If I do, I have to back out of it and take at least an hour pause, then try again from the top.
  4. Go to Bunpro and add in all the new grammar points I’ve learned in duolingo and in Genki. Start working on reviewing those and any previous ones I have left. This one is great when I have downtime in the office and don’t have any homework to work on.
  5. Use quizlet for any new vocabulary. If it was just a kana-only term, there would just be a card for Kana>English meaning. If it involved kanji however, it would include Kana>English meaning, as well as Kanji>Kana.
  6. EDITED: I also forgot to add! Using italki’s notebook system to write a journal in Japanese and submit it for corrections. I try to do it every day. Sometimes I will also submit my assignments from the Genki textbook, since I’m self-taught and not in a college course for Japanese (yet). I also try to pay it forward and correct people who write English entries.

Obviously, all of this can be EXTREMELY streamlined now that I’ve discovered Kitsunio. So much of this can just be condensed into decks on here. So if you’re like me and had the most spaghetti-esque study system before now, I’d love to hear how you made it more efficient with Kitsunio as well! :hugs:


Kanji: I personally finished WK so Kanji is sufficiently covered for now. Any Kanji that I don’t recognise while consuming native materials gets added to my personal Kitsun deck.

Vocabulary: I’m mostly trying to consume native material. E.g. I’m currently reading キノの旅 and just like with the Kanji, I add anything that I don’t recognise and looks like it will be useful to my personal deck. With the built in dictionary (jisho.org) I can basically tap on a word in my ereader app and get the definition right away, from there on I can generate a flashcard instantly. It makes the whole process a breeze!

Grammar: Finished Genki, looking things up as I encounter them and starting Tobira soon (I hope). I’d also like to resume using Bunpro to reinforce the grammar, but so far I’ve been unable to due to time constraints. Also, I’m looking forward to @hinekidori’s Tobira deck :eyes:

Listening: I sometimes try to watch series in Japanese and then conclude that my listening is still lacking too much. I used Japanesepod101 in the past and liked to listen to it while commuting, but nowadays the commute to work takes 5 minutes, so I stopped using it :sweat_smile: I definitely need to put in more work for this aspect.


I have a Tobira vocab deck. Is that what you mean?

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Yep ^^

I’ll see what I can do. It needs some prep before I can import it.


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Well I think it’s good to go. I pushed it to the Community Center. Let me know if anything breaks!



Yeah, I feel you there for sure :frowning: I like to watch Japanese movies that I have on DVD (Studio Ghibli is pretty good for this) and listen at a slower speed with the video player on my PC. It makes it all worth it when you hear something in the wild though and think “wait, I understood that!” Listening and speaking though are low priority for me, even though it’s probably gonna end up being the Japanese I use the most OTL

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Genki 1: using this for grammar and vocabulary, currently on lesson 5. I have my own notes with grammar and I reinforce the vocabulary on Kitsun.io with the ‘Genki complete vocabulary’ deck

Wanikani: currently on level 11. My main/only resource for kanji and it’s the most addicting site I know.

Kitsun: at the moment I use Kitsun to reinforce my Genki vocabulary, but once I start reading I’ll make my own decks.

Bunpro: I use this every day but only for like 5 minutes. I reinforce the grammar I learn in Genki on this site.

My schedule is simple and I like to keep things focused on Genki I & II at the moment to get a good foundation before I start reading, watching movies etc.

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