I Finished the German Tree!
I'm happy to report that I finished the German tree today! I've learned a lot of german and a had a great time doing it!
I'll continue to use duolingo daily, but I'll resume using Memrise German and I'll finish out Fluenz German, a course I started last year and never finished. Over the next several months I'll begin to use other sources of learning as well, including speaking with a few of my German friends more regularly.
Does anyone have any recommendations for things I can do to further enhance my learning experience?
Thanks in advance for the recommendations.
Congratulations on your tree! I'd recommend clozemaster if you haven't already tried it. It is basically a fill in the blank, which helps you learn vocab in context and be exposed to sentence structure. The German package there is huge, like ridiculously huge so I'm sure that will keep you going. Oh, it is free too, although it does have a pro version where you can customise and learn offline too. Viel Glück!
Going over the sections multiple times helps. One of the things i found helpful was going over some lessons 2-3 times in a row. Its easy if there are only 7-8 questions or sentences. The second and third time through might only take an additional 5 -10 minutes. Another thing I tried to do was after I completed several sections of the course and duo indicated that some sections needed to be reviewed, I began to spend most of my time reviewing old material rather than learning new material. I tried to go over only one new topic or section a day, for example, all of the sections of animals 2 if that was the next new topic. The rest of the time I would review everything duo indicated needing refreshing. I would generally try to get 50-250 "points" or whatever the units of measure are, each day. Usually I would get about 800-1400 points each week. Another thing i found most useful was joining a Duolingo German group. Even though there wasn't much personal interaction between group members, seeing how much others were studying each day kept me motivated.
I can recommend you Tinycards, they are free, made by Duolingo and I use them everyday. You can find them on App Store and probably Gogle Play as well and it's easy way to learn new vocabulary. There is official deck for German, with most words, however some are missing, so I started to create my own decks as well. When I want to do new lesson in Duolingo, I always first do Words deck for that lesson, until I'm confident with my knowledge of these worlds. I also read somewhere, that this system of learning, where you get words in random order is best for memorizing new words. If you would like, you can find my Tinycards profile under nickname: Slon00722, where I have a lot of my decks with additional words, used in lessons, which weren't included in official deck.
My goal was to reach level 25 in English by doing the reverse tree. I wanted to see how fluent, they would rate me. I am rated at 71 percent fluent. I was rated 68 percent fluent in German, when I started the reverse tree. I thought the highest rating for Duolingo was 70 percent for awhile there. I was rated at 70 percent and probably hat to do 7,000 XP's to get that extra 1 percent.
read through the entire cortinas conversational german in 20 lessons. You will know where you stand. Its free on google. https://fsi-languages.yojik.eu/languages/Cortina/Cortina%20German/Cortina%20German%20-%20text/Cortina%20Conversational%20German.PDF
I am nearly through the tree and one of the things I have been complementing Duolingo with is Kindle books that are written for German learners. The books come at different learning levels and they have vocabulary at the end of the chapter for the more advanced words (or you can use a Kindle dictionary). I feel like the books have really strengthened my ability to understand sentences and conversations for their overall meaning without having to parse every word. The author I have been reading so far is Andre Klein, who has a few different levels of difficulty.
Like so many others, I tried it and I was happy with it. Since the two languages have different histories they have different concepts as well that they will try to transport. You will tackle your learning from a different point of view, especially since there were different teams working on the course. You have put so much effort in your learning, I'd say you should give it a try.
Wie viele andere habe ich es versucht und war damit zufrieden. Da beide Sprachen eine unterschiedliche Geschichte haben ergeben sich unterschiedliche Konzepte, die sie versuchen zu vermitteln. Sie werden den Kurs aus einem anderen Gesichtspunkt heraus angehen, insbesondere weil unterschiedliche Gruppen den Kurs erarbeitet haben. Sie haben so viel Anstrengung in Ihr Lernen gesteckt, ich würde sagen, Sie sollten es versuchen.
Congratulations on your achievement!
I'd suggest following and contributing to German Internet forums on topics that you find interesting. For me, reading about an interesting subject matter in the language that I'm learning is really rewarding. It's a kind of break from your active language-learning, at the same time stabilizing the language patterns in your brain (provided that the people write decent sentences ;-)).
Good luck for your future endeavors!
I like some of the memrise German courses. I think I will finish the One i started in January but stopped working on in April. Also i really like this course called Fluenz German. Its expensive, but well designed and very comprehensive. They give you lots of drills on the words, phrases and sentence structure of german. There are also brief but great lectures that describe and explain everything in great detail. It really sticks in your brain more easily than Duolingo German to me. I started it months ago but in some ways Duolingo was more enjoyable so I stopped Fluenz for a while. The points you get for completing lessons, the social aspects of the program and the speed that new words and topics are introduced in Duolingo made it more attractive to me.
Just a comment on Babel. I started learning German with Babel before I discovered Duolingo. What irritated me about the Babel platform was that items were considered wrong if you inadventantly put an extra space somewhere in the answer. I'm not a very accurante typist and being marked down for a misstep I couldn't even see was very annoying. Apparently, their program is not very flexible in that regard. The right answer may be there but if it starts one space late, it is wrong.
Congratulations on finishing the tree. Check out Clozemaster too. I have found it helpful.
I am fairly satisfied. I was exposed to a lot of words in a reasonably short window of time. I have learned a modest amount and I enjoyed the process. I did find the structure of the learning, or lack thereof somewhat annoying at times. Take for example the word, zufreiden, which means satisfied. I learned that before Duolingo introduced freiden, peace. German is challenging enough without having it thrown at you. I liked it overall though. There are a few other programs that I liked more in some ways. I like Fluenz German. it is very well structured with 15 minute lectures that follow each of the approximately 150 units. I was learning a lot, but they drill so much over the same material that I found it somewhat boring and tedious. Memrise has good German courses also. I found myself doing duolingo more for reasons that I don't fully understand. Overall, I am happy for the Duolingo German experience. I will continue using it, but I will be branching out and using other sources much more now.
Thank you J-Bai. One thing you might consider doing is focusing on reviewing past lessons a great deal. When I had to strengthen sections I would re-do each section rather than using the option of pushed the strengthen button and simple strengthen the areas that were weak. I would review the entire topic.
Try to limit your forward progress through the german tree to one or two new subjects at most each day. For example, lets say your next lesson is Prepositions. What I would do if I found a lesson particularly difficult is I would do each of the 5 preposition lessons two or even three times before I moved onto the next lesson. The next day I would do the next lesson on the tree which is Materials. If I found it difficult I would do each lesson at least twice. This way you get lots of points and you spend and little extra time learning some of the more difficult words. My goal has been to complete between 50 and 250 XP every day and 800-1400 XP each week.
I became a part of one of the Duolingo German groups. Seeing how the other group members were studying helped to keep me motivated as well. You might consider joinging a group using your smart phone.
These are a few things you can do to progress faster and learn a bit more.