https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo

Polish, yikes

whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Polish was my first language and I was delighted to see it here... MY GOODNESS POLISH IS HARD. I apparently didn't retain much.

Is anyone else learning it? I feel like I need a support group and steady reassurance that I'm not completely dumb for not getting it quickly. :) Will provide same!

2 years ago

69 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/truelefty
truelefty
  • 25
  • 24
  • 24
  • 18
  • 14
  • 13
  • 12
  • 12
  • 11
  • 11
  • 11
  • 10
  • 10
  • 8
  • 6
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 219

I am learning it and yes, it's a bit hard. But not really the hardest language in the world as some people call it ;)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TheShadowBroker

I love Polish, but it's a very intimidating language to learn. I've been having trouble building up the confidence to start learning it, lol

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ania512870

I understand completely!! I was born in Poland and was around it for the first 4 years of my life and I'm just now trying to relearn it! Ive had a little bit of a hard time with it.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vanilla_coke
vanilla_coke
  • 17
  • 15
  • 11
  • 10
  • 8
  • 3
  • 2

I finished the Polish tree around three weeks ago. It wasn't very hard for me but I had the advantage that my native language is Czech, which is similar to Polish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Yeah, my dad and his family all speak at least a little Czech (and Russian.) That will certainly give you a leg up :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ThatGuyJonBryan

Polish is the first new language I'm attempting to learn, and though some parts are coming easier than others, tense and context differenciation are difficult, though I think that's because I only speak english maybe haha

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JohnLaske

Just started learning Polish a few days ago, it's incredibly tough! Such a beautiful language though, I really wanna stick it out and learn it. Hang in there :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Camilo-A2
Camilo-A2
  • 25
  • 24
  • 24
  • 21
  • 21
  • 21
  • 16
  • 14
  • 7
  • 1056

"Wszystko będzie w porządku"

Support group https://www.facebook.com/groups/1704717749744552/

Also, I would recommend you to get a good grammar book, or even using Duo as a helping tool instead of they main source for learning the language. Courses made by volunteers usually have fewer notes than the big ones (e.g. Spanish), and in the case of Polish it feels very detrimental. I mean, trying to figure out why it is "lubię film" but "lubię kota" and then "nie lubię filmu" and "nie lubię kota" without an explanation seems very difficult to me.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Purpurlicht

Uhm, I don't think Duolingo works as a "main source" for learning a (any!) language. I have no idea how that would work, even in theory, and don't believe for a minute it's supposed to be that thing. Apart from that I'm completely with you, the Polish course feels painfully incomplete, especially after the basics. A lot guesswork needed, much trial & error going on. Now, being challenged from time to time isn't necessarily a bad thing, though it surely doesn't help at all if there's no way to learn just why you've got this or that right when you've got it right. For that, and as matters stand, you'd need a book indeed. But when I have a book, well, then there's hardly need for Duolingo, and where and when I use Duolingo, there's usually no book(s). Or even a desk.

It's still fantastic to see there's a Polish course at all (!!) and how much progress they made. The only reason I use Duolingo. :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

I'd agree that Duo isn't ideal as the main source for a language. I didn't know the background of the development- I had the impression that if I was struggling with this platform, then I DEFINITELY wouldn't be ready for another.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hivemindx
hivemindx
  • 25
  • 17
  • 10
  • 5
  • 2
  • 1313

Duolingo is useful for repetition. You have to keep trying things and eventually when you get it right it is more likely to stick. After the 10th time trying to spell mężczyzna when I finally got it right I was more likely to remember it. I find the Duolingo approach with randomised sentences better than simple flash cards, which I find very boring and therefore tend not to do.

Not knowing why something is wrong is a problem and that is when the forums come in very useful. You can ask why is dog now "psem" instead of "pies" and probably get a very helpful answer. In a lot of ways this is crowd sourcing the lessons and it works pretty well.

For what it's worth this sort of complaint gets made about the French course too, and that's one of the most content rich ones as far as I know. You do not get detailed explanations of even basic things like how the -ER verbs are conjugated. You either pick it up by trial and error or you find out in the comments or you use an external resource like french.about.com or wordreference.com.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_Toma_
_Toma_
  • 25
  • 13
  • 11
  • 9
  • 8
  • 6
  • 6
  • 4
  • 651

I need more than 10 times - still get mężczyzna wrong :p

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/arminia11_web_de

Ha. The time it took to learn that word! One of the first words here, and this has been my only source. Weird that the czy is pronounced as "deh" in this word.

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NeridaPeters
NeridaPeters
  • 25
  • 19
  • 13
  • 6
  • 5
  • 3

I know how you feel. It is really, really hard. It's quite hard to stay motivated when there is so much to learn. I'll have to say that I'm not doing much work on it because it's not my main language and because I'm finding it hard. I'll be a member of your support group! What can I do to support you?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Haha, honestly just knowing other people think it's hard is a big help :) I followed you so I can support your Polish progress!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pkapela
pkapela
  • 12
  • 12
  • 11
  • 7

I'm in the same boat as you. I thought I would breeze through this since I still speak Polish at home on occasion. This has been quite a rude awakening.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_Toma_
_Toma_
  • 25
  • 13
  • 11
  • 9
  • 8
  • 6
  • 6
  • 4
  • 651

It is hard... I've learnt the language from my partner and consider myself fluent at the domestic level - can get around Poland with no issues. But goodness, I find even basic reading/writing exercises so difficult! Have no idea how people without any background manage - you guys rock!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Tom873317
Tom873317
  • 25
  • 24
  • 23
  • 11
  • 8
  • 6
  • 6
  • 3
  • 1474

Slow and steady. I started on day 1 when it was released, and am only starting to feel comfortable like I'm not going to just quit in despair. It has been tough, but with some repetition, after every few sections completed, I go back to review from the beginning, and after a few iterations of that, the basic grammar/mechanics are starting to click.

Vocabulary is the other tricky part, because they don't really drill on here. But Memrise is a big help with that. There is a very good course on there called "Duolingo Polish" that mirrors the sections here, but just drills the vocabulary.

So no, not dumb. The unanimous opinion seems to be that Polish is very hard, and we are all struggling. But what a neat language! And won't it be nice to start feeling comfortably intermediate one day?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Yup, can't wait! I've tried memrise and it didn't really click for me, but I hadn't checked out that course- thanks for the tip! Yeah I can't wait to be able to say a few things competently- half of my family will be so impressed :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/amourietta
amourietta
  • 23
  • 15
  • 3
  • 445

I understood and spoke some Polish when I was really young, since my family is from there. I lost it over the years though and have been slowly getting back into it. It certainly is difficult! I'm learning French too so I keep thinking of the French words when I try to translate the Polish exercises.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/immery
immery
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10

If you knew Polish as a little child it may have left you an adwantage of being able to hear and pronounce Polish sounds.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Yup, I can read/ repeat out loud and write down what I hear with few problems. It's everything else! :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/an_21
an_21
  • 25
  • 25
  • 13
  • 1817

Hello, Polish native speaker here. If you need some help or find it hard to grasp some aspects of Polish language don't hesitate to ask me.

Powodzenia! :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Thank you! :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gabrysia12345678

I'm Polish and learning it here to don't worry I'm slow with it to.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Paranoix
Paranoix
  • 15
  • 15
  • 11

Do not worry, Polish is one of the most difficult languages on our planet. Poles starts speak polish fluently in high school. Even if your native language if from slavic family it will not be easy, specially pronunciation. I have few friends from Ukraine - after studying in Poland [and in polish] for 2 years they cannot even say "cześć" correctly. When I was 17 y.o. I was training one of the martial arts, I had coach from Russia. He was speaking Polish for around 15 years and he was unable to say my name and surname (if you want try check my facebook, it is linked with duolingo profile).

I as a native speaker failed EVERY single grammar test in primary school (6 classes) and gymnasium (it's a school with 3 classes between primary and high school).

Try hard and do not give up, learning polish is a full time job for years. If you have troubles you can ask me.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/immery
immery
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10

I believe we are selling Polish people short. I do not believe English kids do not have trouble with English spelling. And that there are no "common" mistakes that many people make like in Polish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Paranoix
Paranoix
  • 15
  • 15
  • 11

That is not only my opinion. I found that in an article where scientist were trying to show how difficult languages can be. They write: to be fluent in Polish natives need around 16 years, in English it is "only" 12 years.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/YoungSpice94

Can you clarify your statement regarding native speakers "not being able to speak fluently untill high school"?

And on another polish post had a native saying that Czech is enjoyable, however difficult to learn. Does that put it one notch above polish on the insanity meter?

What are the main differences between the two? What do you think of English pronunciation?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Paranoix
Paranoix
  • 15
  • 15
  • 11

Kids in primary school often mess cases, do not understand meaning of words, struggle with pronunciation and writing longer texts (like two A4 pages). In gymnasium mostly do not understand meaning of sophisticated words, barely write/read longer and complex texts.

I am not sure I understand correctly your 2nd and 3rd question but: for native polish speakers Czech is enjoyable because sounds very funny and we have a lot in common. On basic level it should be easy for polish speaker to learn czech, but in long run there will be some problems like: false friends or difference between "h" and "ch" in pronunciation (in Polish now its the same thing but in Czech not).

I made small research in google and it's look like czech has easier in grammar.

I have meet few "english" people who speaks polish. If they have even little idea how to use cases only problem is distinguish ś/sz, ć/cz, words like "wejście" and "wyjście" sounds same etc. Generally if they aim to be understand - there is no big deal but if they want speak correctly then they should spend a lot of time or ask for help professional teachers.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/YoungSpice94

I think inadvertently, you answered both of those. What I meant by the last question was do you have trouble pronouncing english words?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Paranoix
Paranoix
  • 15
  • 15
  • 11

Ideal Polish pronouncing is clear. In English we need to start lisp and we do not know how to say "th" in words like "thinking", "this", "through" - most people will say "f" like "football" instead or try tricks like: putting tongue between teeth and saying "s".

I speak English mostly in my thoughts. I had less then 10 conversations in English in my whole life - so for me it is challenging but so far every native (UK/USA) said that I speak well (they were so kind :D). I am passive user of English - I read and listen a lot but do not speak/write.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/wisn
wisn
  • 13
  • 150

My grandparents could not pronounce "thruway", it always came out truway. Even my mother born in the USA could not say thruway correctly. My inlaws who were Slovaks had the same problem.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/arminia11_web_de

That was my guess about how difficult grammar and spelling must be for young Polish kids.

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/impossib13
impossib13
  • 16
  • 16
  • 16
  • 16
  • 13
  • 11
  • 8

As a matter of fact, even those supposed to be among the cream of Polish native speakers make mistakes on the regular. Sometimes it's not much of an issue, sometimes downright embarrassing, I'm talking about journalists and media figures, even the former president.

Deutsche Sprache schwere Sprache, oder?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/YoungSpice94

Nur für Leuten wer sind nicht fleißig ;)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/arminia11_web_de

Ah, you answered the question I have long been wanting an answer to! Thank you!

3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gingerninja3148

Don't worry. I started Polish as soon as it was released and I remember I didn't know a single word of Polish but just thought it would be cool. The way they say words like man and girl freaked me out at first because they are so hard to spell and say but don't worry, you'll get there. You are definitely not dumb because Polish is a challenging language. It's an awesome language so just go through it at your own pace and don't worry about silly mistakes.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

The pronunciation seems to be coming back okay (although it is VERY intimidating!) but man, the grammar rules and vocabulary is really tough to remember. I'm thinking that I'd probably need to focus exclusively on it rather than splitting my time between German and Polish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/coconutpills

Living in Chicago, there is a huge expat population here that speak primarily Polish, so it would help me greatly to learn it professionally. That said, a patient came into our clinic today and I couldn't catch a single word between her and our medical assistant! I feel so stupid still, but it can only go up from here, right? You're not alone at all!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

I had no idea there was a large Polish population in Chicago- I wonder how that came about??

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Inquiss
Inquiss
  • 15
  • 15
  • 14
  • 13
  • 12
  • 12
  • 11
  • 8
  • 6
  • 4
  • 4
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Poles_in_the_United_States the history of Polish emigration to US dates to the begining of the States themselves. Some of American Independence War heroes, like Tadeusz Kościuszko and Kaizmierz Puławski were Poles, google them if you feel interested in this topic :) Up to this day there are probably up to 10 million people of Polish ancestry living in the USA. In Chicago (the most Polish American city) there is up to probably 7% of the city that speaks and still uses Polish. We don't have the best opinion in the USA and never had to be honest, Polish jokes are still quite popular there :D

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/astachowicz
astachowicz
  • 21
  • 11
  • 9
  • 8
  • 6
  • 2
  • 2

They were probably WWII refugees. At least that's how it was with my family and friends from there.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/immery
immery
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10

many were, but

W czasie I wojny światowej w Chicago mieszkało 351 600 ludności polskiej, tym samym więcej niż rdzennej polskiej ludności Warszawy

https://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicago#Polacy_w_Chicago

"During the First World War in Chicago lived 351 600 Polish people, so more than native Polish people in Warsaw. "

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aleksfranco85

In Mexico also!! Many are musicians or just come to live on the beach hahaha

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/thomas139785
thomas139785
  • 22
  • 20
  • 19
  • 10
  • 5

Yes, I'm learning it as well! I really like the course, it's a completely different language from anything I know. If you are determined I think it's very important to pay attention to the grammar (gender, cases) as well and unfortunately, there are no tips and notes after the first checkpoint. In some other thread in this part the grammar book by Oscar Swan is mentioned, and although it looks quite boring compared to Duolingo, it's a nice source of information if you don't get it from Duolingo.

Also, in these parts, of course grammar aspects are meant to be taught, but they are not yet there, for example the genitive form after a negation, but also the pronouns. But usually (until where I am now at least), there are also explanations in the comment section, so I also check that when I have no idea why something is happening. It's sometimes puzzling (like literally), but I actually like doing that as well when I have the time.

Good luck! :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/immery
immery
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10

When you reach part without comments, just start asking questions yourself. There are many people willing to help. even though sometimes we may overwhelm you with information.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Tom873317
Tom873317
  • 25
  • 24
  • 23
  • 11
  • 8
  • 6
  • 6
  • 3
  • 1474

immery, I think you have single-handedly answered every one of my questions this last month. Don't know how you stay on top of it all, but I sure appreciate it, and that is one of the things that makes Duolingo such a great learning resource.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Thank you both!!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Munir-Bahul
Munir-Bahul
  • 14
  • 14
  • 13
  • 12
  • 10

After having learned Russian for about one year, Polish of course is my next challenge :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Good luck!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rupashree0

It has been two years I am living in warsaw, so I am finding the basic level of polish very easy. I hope things get a bit more difficult as I go further along the course. It has been a slow ride but its such a beautiful language and I am finally starting to feel comfortable with it :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MarthaPcho
MarthaPcho
  • 17
  • 17
  • 17
  • 16
  • 14
  • 13
  • 7
  • 5
  • 3
  • 11

I don't find the Polish course hard, but I am not a native English speaker so it's easier for me. Now, combining it with Ukrainian was probably not the most stellar idea, I get a bit confused. I like how this course is done so far, I really appreciate the little notes explaining where, for example, you used a verb wrong.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ArielleH.

Yeah, it's kind of scary T^T I've taken the route of being slow and taking a week on each lesson XD Anyways, good luck, and it's pretty close to Russian, so it might help if you know any of that, and it'll most definitely come back to you quickly ^ ^

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChuckSheph
ChuckSheph
  • 24
  • 16
  • 14
  • 1365

I think it's hard but not hopeless. I am reviewing a lot (and a lot more), and have only finished the demonstratives lesson even though I'm level 7 in Polish (for whatever that means). I feel like i'm improving, but it's really slow. One problem I'm having is that I don't know the gender of nouns. I have always relied upon memorizing definite articles for romance languages but that doesn't help me here.

I didn't know any Polish before duolingo , outside of a few phrases from my family and a six week community college class I took many years ago (I still have the grammar/textbook from that class and need to review it.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/darkestkhan
darkestkhanPlus
  • 13
  • 10
  • 9
  • 9
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 7
  • 7
  • 7
  • 6
  • 6
  • 5
  • 5
  • 5
  • 4
  • 4
  • 4

At the 'basic' level: look at the ending of noun in nominative case - if it ends with 'a' - in ~98% it is feminine gender, 'o' is mostly neuter, 'i' and 'y' are mostly plural. Not sure about 'e' (probably plural or neuter). If it ends with consonant then it is usually (~99%) masculine (notable exception: Śmierć [Death] - this is feminine due to her name being Kostucha).

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/immery
immery
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10

many -ć ending words are feminine.

all ś, ć ń ,sz,cz ź, ż endings are to be learned, but ć one that has more feminine than masculine nouns

  • e is plural
2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/darkestkhan
darkestkhanPlus
  • 13
  • 10
  • 9
  • 9
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 7
  • 7
  • 7
  • 6
  • 6
  • 5
  • 5
  • 5
  • 4
  • 4
  • 4

You are right. Forgot about these [not like I think about it anyway... blessings and curses of being native speaker, but personally I think most nouns ending with sz, cz are masculine too].

This explains why I couldn't come up with a noun that ends with 'e' in singular nominative.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/immery
immery
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10

you hang out at this forum too little. chwila tutaj znasz zasady polskiego i to po angielsku.

you are right with -sz I found only wesz and mysz, but there are more with -cz smycz, klacz, sicz, ciecz, dzicz, rzecz,
(try for yourself http://www.zakonczone.pl/na/cz)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Amethyst59

I would recommend downloading a book called, "Polish in a Nutshell". This is an excellent reference for grammar rules, conjugation and declension.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

Thanks for the tip!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Debra256226

Hi, I am also learning polish, I did not know any polish, just a few words, and have only been at it for 2 weeks, but I have made progress and you will too...…...don't worry im sure your doing great....x

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/impossib13
impossib13
  • 16
  • 16
  • 16
  • 16
  • 13
  • 11
  • 8

Once upon a time a British lady asked me whether speaking Polish was difficult. I answered playfully: "It is so difficult I would have never learnt had it not been my first".

No reason to deem yourself dumb, even if you don't succeed at first. If you want to learn, you have to make mistakes. Polish grammar is so complicated and quirky it often gets native speakers confused!

Moreover, there is no way a westerner could guess her way through, so kudos for trying.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/whatwouldkatdo
whatwouldkatdo
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 14
  • 7
  • 218

If I didn't have my current background I think I would have given up already!!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/arminia11_web_de

I am so curious what learning Polish is like for a child. Do people get good grades in spelling there? Do people drop out of school early because the language is so difficult?

3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/YoungSpice94

So I take it you moved away from Poland at an early age and forgot most of it? I am a bit confused..

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/impossib13
impossib13
  • 16
  • 16
  • 16
  • 16
  • 13
  • 11
  • 8

That's not the case really as I'm actually fluent in Polish. I tried to be amusing but now see that my humour hasn't traveled well at all. What I meant was that I probably wouldn't be able to learn it except as a mother tongue.

In other words, unless you already speak another Slavic language well, you have no reason to expect Polish to be easy.

Cierpliwości i wytrwałości życzę; powodzenia!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/YoungSpice94

What do you think about the English language? I know I ask that a lot, however I lile to wear other people's language shoes.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/impossib13
impossib13
  • 16
  • 16
  • 16
  • 16
  • 13
  • 11
  • 8

It's easy until you meet someone from Newcastle :D

2 years ago
Learn Polish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.

Learn Polish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.