Finished Russian tree, now what?
I recently finished the Russian tree and am going back through and reviewing everything, but would like to move on to a "next step" to stay stimulated. I have a Russian for beginners short story book, but it's very slow moving for me as in I have to look up almost every other word.
Does anyone have any ideas/experience with what to do next?
If you like reading, try importing children's books and short stories into LingQ.com (which is not very expensive) or Learning with Texts (which is free, but less professional).
If you're more of a visual learner, try watching your favorite movies dubbed in Russian, or even better, try watching animated movies like Frozen or Inside Out. I like to use dual subtitles (English on top and Russian on the bottom), in order to avoid looking up new words all the time. I don't even worry about memorizing them right away, at this stage the most important thing is to absorb the language as much as possible without worrying about the details, and the great thing about movies is that not only you get used to the sounds, you also learn a lot of vocabulary without even trying to memorize it, because the most common words get repeated very often, especially in movies targeted at children. For more information about dual subtitles, you can check this out: http://actualfluency.com/guide-watch-video-2-sets-subtitles/
Try several of these videos, which are fairly easy, and then look around for something more difficult.
DuoFaber's suggestion of LingQ is very good. Unless it has changed recently, you can access the audio and texts without buying a membership; you will not get their flashcard setup, but that is not necessary (FWIW, in my case I found it fairly useless even when I had a membership there). (His movie suggestion is good too, of cousrse.)
I know this post is quite old now and what I'm going to ask is completely off topic. But why do you have level 25 in English? Just wondering. I guess you used it in reverse so to speak, to learn another language. If so, which one?
Yes, it was the English for Russian speakers (i.e.,, reverse) tree. There are so many more questions that must be answered in Russian for it than in the Russian for English speakers course, and it was Russian practice that I was after. Right now I am doing the same thing (the reverse tree) in Spanish. I suppose that will never show up on my little display of badges, however.
How's the German course? I'm tempted to start that next (whenever there will be a "next" for me here)--that or Swedish.
Thanks for your answer. I did the German course just for fun, because I had already known German on B2 before starting the course, just tested out the majority of it tbh, but from my experience it's really decent and arguably one of the longest.
Edit: I can see you've finished both Italian and French, what are these courses like?
The French course I went through years ago--and could already read French before starting. It was good, and its update later on improved it. Never finished the Italian course (someone else in my family wanted to learn Italian but gave up), but it was just fine, too.
Definitely do the French course if you are at all interested. It's a great language, w/ at least as many resources available as for German, and the course is a good introduction (favorable critique of the old course; ignore the first paragraph in Russian, as the 2nd paragraph, in English, rephrases it).
IMHO even the poorest Duo course is worth doing if the particular language is of interest. "Never met a Duo course I didn't like!" :)
FWIW, I'm busy doing other things at the moment, but starting German or Swedish here keeps tempting me. I've always wanted to be able to read German, and my father's side of the family was Swedish.
I know Russian is one of the languages on Clozemaster.com, might be worth looking into. For reading comprehension, it might be worth checking out the courses on Memrise from the Frequency Dictionary to expand your passive vocabulary. I'd also suggest having a look at Russian videos on YouTube, setting devices or services to Russian (on a computer or mobile device), finding conversation partners on italki (LOADS of Russians are looking for exchange with English speakers)...
I found that doing the look up every other word routine to get through authentic texts was itself particularly valuable. Yes, it takes a lot of effort, but the story provides a context that is lacking with flashcard programs. And you get to see grammar in action.
I find Duo's immersion feature extremely well suited to this. For one, you're at a computer, so the looking up of the words is more straightforward. And, yes, there will be lots and lots of looking up words.
Here's the thing in most active progress now: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/17183514 I think chapter 5 is where the as-yet-untranslated content starts. But even going through the earlier chapters sentence by sentence can be very valuable. Read a sentence in Russian: puzzle out what you can (you'll have the advantage of the hints, although they can also easily lead astray), and then look at how it was translated.
This is definitely more involved than some of the other options, and it is going to be hard, but it's a good and rewarding kind of hard.
Also: timed practice on the tree. I think it really helps with moving vocab into active memory.
For expanding vocabulary, there a free app simply called "Fun Easy Learn Russian" that teaches 6000 words, and is very well broken down by category. They have exercises using flash cards, typing the word by hearing it, speaking the word by reading it, a matching game and some variations on those. The app is also well made with minimal, rather non-invasive ads (a small banner at the bottom). It doesn't deal at all with grammar or the like, it's simply for learning vocabulary, but I highly recommend it
Other than that, start shopping ebay and other places for books that one would read in elementary school . You could probably even find some in the play store.