Kana? Vocabulary? iKnow!

Hello again!

For quite a while, I have been tutoring university students who major in Japanese, and they often ask me “What do you recommend for learning vocabulary?” This is a very good question!

I have quite a few methods that I would recommend, however in this post I will be writing about the site which I recommend the most. One of my major top favorites:



iKnow is a very, very good site for those who struggle with remembering vocabulary, and to top it of; they also have kana (Hiragana / Katakana) course !

So let me explain exactly how how iKnow works:

When you register an account, you get 5 FREE trial sessions, to see if iknow is something for you. After you’ve made an account, this is the first page that will appear if you’re a completely new user:


Here you can take a Japanese Core Placement test; to see of which one of their official Japanese core course’s you suit the most. Fantastic, isn’t it?

Or you can simply choose a course you think if best for you by clicking “Browse courses”; They have a lot of courses, including courses made by other learners; such as JLPT courses.

After you’ve taken the placement test (Or chosen your course) you will in the end reach to your dashboard, which looks like this;


The dashboard is a amazing; useful place where you can keep up with your daily study progress. It also shows what course(s) you are currently studying.  You have quite a few opinions at the dashboard. Some of the includes;

  • You can choose your “daily goal” of how many hours a day you want to study.
  • Weekly calendar: Shows you your daily/weekly study progress; See how many goals you’ve reached, how many days you have been studying and so on.
  • Study time: section shows how much you have been studying in total.
  •  Study progress: shows you how many items (words/vocabulary) you’ve started (to learn), How many strong items you have (Those you are getting good at) and how many items you have completely mastered.

In short; The dashboard is your gold-main; It keeps you updated on what you’re studying and how far you’ve come since you started.

You might be wondering of how iKnow works. And this is how:

First of all; choose the course you want/ the course which is suited for your current level.


The “Japanese core 6000” is the most popular official course made my iKnow.

It will teach you from scratch, the 6000 most used, necessary kanji and vocabulary there is to know. Each core course has steps: Step 1 , step 2 and so on.

So you wont be learning 1000 vocabulary at once, but will be taking it step by step, making you’re you mastered them all.

After you’ve chosen your course, gotten started you will see this, and this is the best;

caef6b5c7e88e57897a73f0643750530Here you can choose what you want to learn and/or what way you want to learn it.

The original and basic method is the “iKnow!” Here you will learn words, and get example sentences with the words. After you’ve been introduced to a couple of words your memory will be tested by inserting the words into certain sentences(Such as: ___が降っている →雪が降ってる) and shows a certain  kanji and asks you to type its pronunciation (Such as 雪→ゆき)

The other methods are:

  • Sentence trainer– mastering typing sentences in Japanese.
  • Rapid choice – You have to those the answer fast as you have little time to answer. This is very good method to train your memory.
  • Self check – self-asses your knowledge and know what you’re good and bad at.


In short:

iKnow is a SRS (Spaced repetition system) application with pre-made decks. It has images, words, sentences and audio, which gives you multiple ways to learn.

Even thought iKnow cost some money(Which isnt alot) is is completely worth it.

I myself, am not the type to use a lot of money on such applications, but iKnow is one of the only applications I do use money on.

They have multiple plans and prices which are:

  • 1 month plan: Monthly recurring  plan. 1,4080 yen/m (Approx. $13/m)
  • 12 month plan: Fixed subscription. 680 yen /m (approx. $6). 12 months = 8,160 yen ( approx. $72~$73)
  • Lifetime plan: 2,800 yen ( approx. $220)

I myself, find the monthly plan a nice and affordable deal. It is truly worth the price if you are serious about the Japanese language !


And last but not least, iKnow also has an amazing phone app, which is pretty much identical to the web-based one. Makes it easy to learn on-the-go!


That’s it for today! Hope you liked it!

Remember to comment below, like and share ! All support is appreciated!





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