The insane setting is 50 xp per day. If I do 5 mini lessons (the equivalent of 50 xp) it would take about 56 more days for me to complete the polish tree. At that rate I will just finish the Time lesson and be 1 into Household by December 23rd. It's 28 mini lessons per day for me to be done by Wigilia 2015. I really want to surprise my Babcia by speaking Polish with her, but I don't know if it might be too much for my brain to learn so quickly.
Is five new mini lessons per day too much? Because one must review old lessons as well. But maybe since it is not new material, it is okay to go over 50 xp with "strengthening skills".
What should be the ratio of review to new material each day?
You can't get full fluency with DL, anyway - so finishing your tree at break-neck speed is not really productive, unless you're one of those rare people who can absorb languages that quickly.
Learn the polite forms of address, learn "please" and "thank you" and simple sentences like that. Go check out Memrise and see if they have simple phrases you can learn - but don't try to cram everything DL has into this short span of time.
I play on DL a lot - I gain at least 100xp a day just by strengthening skills, but I'm not zooming through the lessons of my tree. I need to keep hammering this into my brain or I'm going to lose it.
Your grandma will be proud just knowing that you are interested in learning! Well done and good luck on your Polish!
I think your Babcia will be really impressed and touched that you're trying.
Personally, I've found that it's best for me to learn one new skill a day and then spend the reest of my time strengthening my skills. The time spent varies as my amount of free time changes a lot day to day, but I like to spend at least an hour strengthening skills. I go into each skill and strengthen it rather than relying on the general strengthening exercises as when everything is gold, duolingo seems to grab the stuff I don't need to work on. I even keep a spreadsheet so I can see what I've worked on last, and what I struggled with.
It depends. Some people can absorb more than others, some languages will be easier than others. A Portuguese speaker could manage way more Spanish daily than a German speaker. A third-language learner will probably learn faster than a first foreign language learner. Personally, I top out around 100 xp right now - if I do that much in one day I forget some of the lessons. But I'm going through the Spanish tree for the second time, turning it gold this time, so a lot of it is review. My first time through the tree 100 xp would have been WAY too much.
Pay attention to whether you already forgot what you went through yesterday and the day before, and you'll figure out an appropriate rate for yourself.
That's a good point. You don't want to take on more than you can manage, or set unreasonable goals. People get discouraged that way.
I think it helps when you've been exposed to that language before. Because your Babcia speaks Polish you have probably been exposed to how the language sounds even without realising it, as even when speaking English your family probably has Polish influences in their speech. That'll help you when trying to hear sounds that are unusual or absent from English.