I really feel that learning Japanese can be broken down into 5 convenient parts: the writing system, vocabulary acquisition, learning grammar, reading practice, and listening practice. Here you will find my collection of tools and resources that I actually use myself for all of these elements. I won’t put anything here that isn’t tested and true. Think of this as your kit for being awesome at Japanese.
(*) Indicates a free resource
($) Indicates a paid product
(!) Indicates something paid, but that has a free trial of some kind.
Hirgana & Katakana:
(!) Dr. Moku (mobile and flash/web)
(!) Read The Kanji (has an free option for kana)
(*) Japanese Level Up RTK Mod (pre-made Anki deck)
(!) Read The Kanji (JLPT N5 level kanji is free)
(!) iKnow.jp Includes a placement test, as well as various forms of quizzing.
(*) Anki shared decks, especially JLPT-based ones.
Dictionaries & Reference, to use either with LWT or on their own.
(*) Yahoo! Japan dictionary (Great for bilingual examples and definitions)
(*) Tangorin (Multi-resource dictionary)
(*) Space ALC (Best for expressions rather than words)
(*) Kanji dictionary
(*) Aedict (Android)
($) Genki a very well supported textbook
($) Japanese For Busy People (be sure to use kana versions)
(*) Anki shared decks, especially based on your textbook(s)
Basically anything with text, including native subs and video games
(*) Maru (who doesn’t love cats?)
(*) Yahoo! Kids has information and news on various topics as well as interactive games and quizzes.
(*) The Japanese Wikipedia can be used to look up familiar topics, or simply enjoy their main page, updated daily!
(*) Free manga is widely available on the Internets. Enjoy!
(*) News Web Easy is daily news with furigana, built in monolingual dictionary, and audio/video accompaniment.
($) Graded Readers are a huge confidence boost, and interesting too!
($) J-List has books, manga, and magazines. Look for out for those sales!
($) PlayAsia has import games of all kinds. As long as there’s lots of text it’s still reading, and fun!
(*) The Surusu URL Shuffler can create some variety in your reading.
(*) Furigana Injector (for Google Chrome)
(*) Hiragana Megane (web-based furigana generator)
(*) Send To Kindle (browser plugin for Kindle owners or Kindle app users)
Includes TV, radio, and music
(*) Armitunes (anime and jpop/jrock music)
(!) Crunchyroll can have English subtitles turned off for some titles.
(*) Grooveshark is a great way to discover new Japanese music.
(*) FreeMake converter (convert video, rip audio, and more)
(*) Slice Audio File Splitter to split up long audio files.
(*) MP3Gain to normalize your audio.