Read The Kanji

Read the KanjiAn online application ‘Read The Kanji’ has been carefully designed to assist users in… reading the Kanji. Like many others, the app makes use of spaced repetition which has the ability to monitor progress on the language proficiency test for Japanese (JLPT) in kanji, hiragana and also katakana for every level of learner. The breadth of information on the app allows users to effectively study Japanese, no matter what level they are at.
Pros
Includes katakana and hiragana styles, along with Japanese proficiency tests 5-1.
Progress is monitored and informative word/character statistics are displayed.
You can type in Japanese via the input method editor (IME) on any device (even those without proper text support for Japanese language).
Levelling-up frequently reminds you you’re moving forward in your learning.
Well laid out site, easy to use.
Sign-up allows users to experience a free trial of the website.

Cons
Not as many decks as other apps.
No mnemonics for characters/words is highly frustrating.
The Verdict
All-in-all, the Read The Kanji app is useful. The spaced repetition system assists learning , allowing the user to grasp then recall newly learned characters. The app is very user-friendly and easy to use, with many customised touches that make the experience stand out from others e.g. when you finally learn a character the cards slowly change from red to green. Also, if you click a specific kanji you can instantly know about things such as the stroke order, possible meanings, kun’yomi and even on’yomi. The grid of statistics is a valuable tool on the app, and it intelligently monitors which words and kanji characters you constantly do well, or not so well, on when learning. The layout of the grid is simple, and shows you where you need to do more work.
However, there are some flaws with the site. Read The Kanji sticks rigidly to the kanji needed for JLPT and nothing else. Other sites like Memrise allows users to learn from real textbooks like Genki and you can pick the sets of kanji you individually wish to learn. Spaced repetition for learning is nothing new, nor is it the best way to learn Kanji as a stand-alone approach. As previously mentioned, the complete lack of any character/word mnemonics is annoying to say the least. Learners of kanji need the mnemonics to effectively remember each card, so you have to make your own up of just read what other users have said about a specific kanji. Not the best, really. The app is available at just $5 per month, for the price it’s not bad, and might make a use-full addition to your kanji study toolbox.


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