How do people reach level 25 in a post-immersion era?!
Are they using a chrome extension to bring back immersion?
He just turned 13.
In my opinion his french is pretty good. He can spontaneously come up with simple sentences throughout the day. He can ready and understand picture book level stuff. His favourite author to read in French is Robert Munsch. (He is a famous Canadian picture book author and many of his books are available in French and English)
I went out and started talking to people, as it's the fastest way to improve. Competent speaking has the bonus of improving your reading and writing as a side effect. After every succesful conversation, I would add another digit to the little Swedish and German flags I wear over my head so that everyone can see what level I'm at.
I've never seen the draw of level 25, to be honest- I like to finish the trees and then start talking to people in earnest. A smile and a look of surprise feels much better for me than some lingots and another digit. YMMV.
Goes without saying the levels are nothing more than an encouraging reification, but finishing trees at the levels you've got I think the average person would have an active vocabulary of approximately nothing (and a passive vocabulary not much greater) if starting a language from scratch.
That depends entirely on how good their memory is, how much they use the language while learning it, and whether or not they use flashcards to cement their vocabulary. Those little numbers say nothing about what a person does outside of Duo.
I'd struggle to define what an 'average' language learner's habits are. Some like to sit with books and programs and study in-depth until they have it all down before they start speaking. Some (cough Benny cough) rush though the basics and go out to immediately mangle the language, slowly improving. Others have a lot of experience with languages in general and can get the basics down comfortably and quickly in families they're familiar with.
I haven't finished the Spanish tree, by the way.
For a while I had my doubts that making it to level 25 in the post-Immersion era made much sense. Then I experimented doing the Dutch tree comprehensively lesson by lesson and found myself on target to hit at least level 24 before I hit the end of the tree, and I couldn't even reliably get the sentence transcription questions yet, so I guess you could say my thinking has evolved on the point. Duolingo seems to provide more opportunities to translate into your target language as you advance through the tree and the levels; this makes sticking with it more sensible, but it also means I'd be reticent to recommend the approach if that target language translation for some reason weren't coming forth.
(and, no, unfortunately, there's no bringing back Immersion)
I am at level 21 in the reverse Spanish tree and have 18 and 1/4 skills to go. I am moving pretty slowly. I'm keeping the tree gold as I go through and that requires a lot of review (which I am doing because I evidently need it). I would not be at all surprised if I am at or almost to level 25 before I finish.
(There was a major update to the tree involving 24 new skills shortly after I finished the earlier version. I think I may have gone up one skill level in-between the time I finished the earlier version and the time of the update. I think I started the tree before Immersion disappeared, but never actually did Immersion for the reverse tree.)