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1000 Day Streak Overview

I made it to a 1000 day streak today, so I thought I would mark the occasion with a very rare public post. To start, this has been more of an experiment in consistency than an attempt to become fluent in Spanish. I have wanted to learn Spanish and knew that it would take daily practice to do so. The experiment, then, was to see if ANY daily practice would help, or if it took a special kind of practice. Using Duolingo before, I knew I'd have new words and grammar thrown at me, so I knew it wasn't going to be me hunting for more Spanish. It would mostly be showing up to practice. So I did. At the "Regular" 20 XP per day level, I showed up and hit the new lessons until I ran out, then hit the practice weak button. Finally, when I got close to all gold lessons, I started picking the "weakened" ones. I do admit, there were nights, a few minutes to midnight, where I would be scrambling through the basic lessons, just to get the XP. Other nights I forgot altogether, relying on my streak freeze (I'm not actually sure how many times that was, or I would include that asterisk) to keep the streak alive. Sometimes, I pulled my hair out to get the bare minimum; other times, I'd feel adventurous and hover over the 30 XP per day goal or think "how hard could it be to do this with two languages at the same time?" But for science, I stuck to the same thing throughout.

2 years, 269 days (and a couple more for streak freezes), ~52% fluency (according to Duolingo), a 5.0/5.0 Progress Quiz taken today, and honestly very little confidence of being able to hold a conversation in Spanish. This is, of course, not Duolingo's fault. They've built a system that outputs based on input, and with as little input as I've given, I'm very happy with the reading comprehension I've developed. An understanding I had for the last year or so was that I was not going to get better unless I put more intention into my practice. I didn't because I felt that would be risking loss of the streak. Now having broken into 4 digits, I feel I'm at a fork in the road. Part of me wants to break my streak intentionally, so I can refocus on language comprehension instead of watching a number counter. The other part of me wants to up the daily XP to use the streak as pressure to practice more. I don't know what will produce a better result. Probably the latter.

Intentional practice is definitely necessary. If I was focused on improving my Spanish, at this pace, I would have been very disappointed in my progress. But with the streak as the goal, language acquisition just made keeping the streak easier.

On a separate note, I have no idea what to do with over 5000 lingots. I know some features that used currency have gone away over the years, but I'm wondering if I've missed something.

As someone who loves games, I've enjoyed having a gamified way to learn language. Thanks you Duolingo for creating such a useful tool, even if I've only partially utilized it.

March 28, 2017


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Great Job! I am very proud for you and your achievement! Keep going and make it even longer! Best wishes to you and your family.

March 28, 2017


Congrats on your streak! I think that upping your XP would be a good way to keep motivated, and starting the reverse tree would likely be good for you. I have had mine set at 50 XP for a long time, and that forces me to actually work for it, which I like. The lingot store should be updated soon, as there is potential for new items to arrive when the newest version of the website is finished, finalized, and implemented. Congrats on your accomplishment, however!

March 28, 2017


Ahh that's some great motivation right there! I would have given you a Lingot but... that'd be a tad unnecessary, I feel. I appreciate your post though!

March 28, 2017


Congratulations! I have also been gaming a lot. In World of Warcraft I have 22 character at level 100. In last summer I decided to put some of my gaming time to learn a new language and started in August with Spanish just for fun. It is inspiring to read that you only have done 20 xp evey day and what you have achieved because of that. Thanks you rock! Edit. inspering to inspiring. Thanks SnacAttac01. Here is lingot for helping me out. :-)

March 28, 2017


Inspiring not Inspering. Sorry very grammatical.

March 29, 2017


Your achievement in amazing, but honestly I think you should rethink your strategy. The goal should be to learn a language and not to stay on Duolingo forever. Congratulations and good luck to you.

March 28, 2017


WOOOOWWWW! Congratulations poonshwaa! I know what you mean about the confidence in speaking. Granted, I'm better than I think I am when I actually speak, but I want to do it without pausing all the time and formulating sentences. I agree that intentional practice is necessary to get much better, which is what I'm currently doing.

Anyways, thanks for your overview on your 1,000 days on Duolingo and I wish you the best! :-)

March 28, 2017


With over 5000 lingots, all you could really do is give them away to people. There isn't all that much stuff in the store

March 28, 2017


Felicidades!!! Muy interesante. Duo is a good start, but you need more than Duo to become fluent. I have not tried the Benny Lewis book for Spanish "Language Hacking" I tried the German one and it is very good for conversations , if you can get it from the library I recommend it, so you can start talking and writing.

Some funny movies in Spanish, Spanglish (more English, but nice), Seres Queridos, Mujeres al borde de un ataque de nervios.

March 28, 2017


Set your goal to 1 XP if you'd like to keep your streak. I recommend you listen to music in Spanish while you drive. Look for the lyrics and sing away on the road. It'll teach you a lot, I promise. And you would be doing some learning while driving!

March 28, 2017


Congrats on your 1000 Days

March 29, 2017


Congrats! I hope you don't give up the streak now and keep learning, if not Spanish then something else. When we started using this site, there were only five courses, but now there are so many more.

I agree that there is a glass ceiling for the fluency you can get with the current Duolingo courses, but in Spanish I found that the ceiling was actually higher, and Duolingo provided quite a bit of knowledge—my girlfriend studies Spanish on the site, and just based on occasional peeks at what she is doing I was able to learn enough to explain basic needs in Mexico, and understand basic responses. Of course it's not enough to hold a fluent conversation, but I have found that the Spanish course gives a lot more tools for using Spanish in real life than the French course for example (although the French course is good too).

March 28, 2017


Amazing! I totally understand the rushing to do the basics at midnight and streak freezes. I have had many nights so far where I jolted up at 11:45 and raced downstairs to do duo.

March 28, 2017


Congratulations! :)

March 29, 2017


Congratulations! That's extremely impressive.

March 28, 2017


Congrats !

March 28, 2017


Wow, I'm very impressed by your streak! (I have only 992 days to tie you!)

March 29, 2017


Congratulations on your 1,000 day streak and your 5.0 quiz score!

March 29, 2017



March 30, 2017


GG, and buona fortuna!

March 30, 2017


Try learning a new language!

March 30, 2017

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