I just completed the Dutch tree - a review (below 2.0 version)
I first used Dutch Duolingo around June 2017, well, actually I already tried the module in 2014 or 2015, but didn't progress further because I was lack of motivation. In June, I suddenly regained my motivation and forced myself to finish the Dutch tree.
My background: I am a native speaker of Bahasa Indonesia, our language still uses some of the common dutch words we use daily (for example: kantoor, bioscoop, gratis, trotoar, verboden, pentil, etc there are about 200+ words)
I learned English since 10, so I am quite fluent on it, and happened to learn German for a year during my teenager days, so I am not incredibly alien with Germanic grammars and german-based vocabularies. I am quite delighted when found out Dutch grammar is so much simpler than the dreadful German grammar (akkusativ, dativ... I am looking at you!)
I have a very positive review on Dutch tree as the modules are fun and full of witty, funny sentences that can easily fit #shitduolingosays in instagram.
Unfortunately I missed a lot of grammatical explanation as I progressed mostly on smartphone, and I just realized just later that the website version give you the grammatical explanations.
However, since I never keep my tree golden, I revisit all the grammar explanations of the parts I don't understand, and it's quite helpful because it feels like a child who experienced a full-scale immersion, and received explanations how the second language works.
What skills have I developed? Reading - my ability to understand dutch language has improved dramatically. Due to the repetition of the adverbs, prepositions and common verbs I encountered on duolingo, I am now able to read news articles, wikipedia articles with the help of dictionary.
Writing - I think I can start writing simple sentences, with errors here and there but understandable by the natives. The major problem is that I still write dutch sentences with english language structure, it's understandable but not grammatically correct.
Listening - This has always been my biggest weakness even in my native tongue and english language (I read faster than listening). However, I will keep practicing by listening to more dutch conversation in radio or grammar books. Duolingo has helped me to figure out the most common words, but at this level, I don't think I have developed any listening comprehension other than asking direction or listening to simple sentences with proper context.
Speaking - forget this part, since I don't have any friends to practice. I don't expect to develop this skill for the time being.
However, after I repeat the courses, I realize there are some grammatical cases you really need to study more intensively since they are not explained very well. In my case, it's the "Er" course. Even after I finished that tree, I still don't understand how the grammar works. I ended up reading other non-duolingo sources to fill the gap.
Overall, I think the dutch tree should be an example how language learning can be fun and not intimidating. I first joined Duolingo to refresh my German grammar but ended up finished Dutch tree first, and now demotivated to finish the German tree :)).
Yes, duolingo will not make me fluent, but it gives me a very solid fundamentals if I want to advance further. I now incorporate Dutch language in my life daily.
I am looking forward for the next tree 2.0 since I haven't gotten it. Thank you very much!
Van harte gefeliciteerd met het voltooien van Dutch 1.0
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"I've finished my Dutch Tree, what's next?"
Veel plezier gewenst met het verder leren van Nederlands.