Japanese: where to go after Mini Stories

I have been learning japanese for 3 months with Lingq now. I liked the mini stories even though I think they are way too hard at the end. I also did the other content from Lingq.

Whats your advice on how to progress?
Did you find importing youtubers a good idea?
Did you import children novels? If yes, from where? I found importing texts which have hiragana printed over the kanji to be an issue.

I would be really happy as to know which content you found most helpful after 2-3 months.

Many thanks!


I’m learning Korean (currently around A2 level), but the learning experience is somewhat comparable.

Back then, I learned almost exclusively with beginner content on LingQ for the first 5-6 months. At a certain point, there comes a time when you can’t endure the mini-stories anymore. I would recommend trying out the various types of content (eg. Youtube / Netflix) and activities (SRS / language exchange apps) available to see what you enjoy. For example, consuming authentic content on YouTube (using Language Reactor) and importing some of it into LingQ for further study. Topics like travel or food are not too complicated yet entertaining (I got hooked on camping videos back then, hated webtoons or children’s books). There are also plenty of beginner-friendly podcasts on YouTube or Spotify (with transcriptions). So basically, it’s about exploring content and figuring out what you enjoy.

After the mini-stories, there’s a kind of limbo where you’ve grown tired of the available beginner content, but everything else seems too challenging. Just switch back and forth as you please, depending on your mood for the day.

(There’s another wall when transitioning to books, btw. whaaah help :D)


I’m not learning Japanese myself, but these two YouTube channels look good. You can probably study them directly on YouTube.

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The mini stories are more of a Beginner 2 level, in my opinion. I think they’re too much for someone brand-new to Japanese.

I highly recommend the Comprehensible Japanese series. There are Complete Beginner (ie, Beginner 1), Beginner (Beginner 2) and Intermediate level lessons.


I also really enjoyed the Watanoc courses. They’re a good way to learn about Japan while you’re learning the language:

Once you get to the Intermediate stage, you’ll probably discover the Noriko lessons. There are hundreds. I spent a ton of time in those lessons.






Wow! Thanks a lot for the fast and extensive help!

Guess repeating mini stories and swapping to new content now and then seems like a good approach!

I will check out the linked lessons and report at a later point how helpful they were for me at this moment. Maybe this will help someone else at some point as well!

Thank you all!!


After the mini stories, I went through other beginner courses but even though i finished them, I found them very boring. Since then, I leave the search filter between intermediate and advanced.

While I went through the mini stories, I studied grammar. For any sentence that made no sense after translation, I searched to see if I am missing understanding of some grammar.

With the exception of one-off lessons when I get bored, or when I find something interesting, I have been going through the Learn Japanese with Noriko podcast course. I am about a third of the way through.
I left it for a bit to go through 「昔話、日本語」and I am now back to Japanese with Noriko.

I am almost at intermediate by Lingq standards.
I am pretty slow compared to others, I think. I spend ~30 min daily (on Lingq) usually, though sometimes I do well over an hour.

I think the strategy is to find a Lingq course or playlist. You can check the courses for the percentage of unknown words for every lesson in the course. Depending on how much of a challenge you want to take, choose ones with higher or lower percentages. A few reasons to use playlists that I can think of:

  1. It gives motivation to get through something
  2. less time deciding what content to use next
  3. Sense of achievement and progress, especially when the course/playlist is completed. You can also look over time at the percentage of blue/yellow words to see how these numbers are getting lower.
  4. Consistent challenge.
  5. You can have available a better reference point of speaking or writing styles when comparing to other playlists.

For me, Japanese with Noriko will take me a long time to complete while still challenging me.

If Japanese with Noriko is too challenging, maybe there is some other playlist that you can use. I know there is a “Comprehensible Japanese” channel on YouTube. Users on here turned those videos into courses, you can go through those or import the YouTube videos.

Edit: I wrote the original post without reading other replies. jf999 provided excellent references to “Comprehensible Japanese”.