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Should I start the Reverse Tree?

  • 1316

I am now at level 14 in German from English. I am an English speaker. Would it benefit me to start a reverse tree now? I was planning on waiting till I got to level 25 with a golden tree. I'd like to hear from another proficient English speaker, even if English is not your first language, who has actually done the English from German subscription. Thanks in advance.

Also how was it helpful or not? Thanks again.

October 4, 2017



After completing the German from English tree, I started on the English from German tree. I am currently about 2/3 through the reverse tree and have found it very helpful. At first the reverse tree seemed easy, but it has become increasingly difficult as I progress. I continue to practice the German from English daily to keep it all gold, and then switch to the reverse tree. Keeping both trees golden takes a lot of work, so my progress on the reverse tree is slow. The daily practice on both trees helps me retain what I have learned on vocabulary and grammar.


I think you could begin the reverse tree now, as long as you did only one new lesson every day or two, because unit notes will be in German, and you'll need to spend a lot of time trying to get (at least) the essence of what is being said. If you have more patience, wait until you're at Level 20. If you use the lesson notes for reading practice, you could study them at your own pace, as you would a children's book, or a short magazine or newspaper article, then move on to the heavier stuff.

  • 1316

That sounds like good advice. Thanks.


I'd say to start the reverse tree, but continuing with doing exercises in the German-from-English tree. I am doing exactly that with Dutch and found no major obstacles.


You do not need to wait for level 25, if you want to do the reverse tree do it now. I am not a great fan of the reverse tree, for the simple reason that there are better resources such as the DW and memrise courses.


Is your tree already finished? What is the percentage? 1/2? 3/4?

Would you only do the lessons or would you also try to read/understand the German tips and notes?


During the time I was working on the German Tree, I began the Reverse German Tree when I was about 70 percent complete. The Reverse German Tree offered additional words, sentences, and practice that I found helpful in learning German. In hindsight, I was that I had started it a bit earlier, perhaps when I had about 45 to 50 percent of the German Tree complete. Of course, everyone's learning style and experience is different - you could begin the Reverse German Tree and see what you think. Best wishes. :)


I am doing the reverse tree now and find it really useful. However, I started it when I had already finished the german from english tree. My only caution would be that it would be frustrating to get a large amount of questions wrong due solely to grammar. What I am saying is I don't think it would be best to try to learn declension tables by inference but if you already know the tables somewhat it's going to greatly improve your usage and fill in small gaps. Alternatively, print of grammatical tables and supercharge your learning.


I actually find that doing the reverse tree has helped me focus more on the grammar than the original tree did. So much of the original tree is translating from German to English, so you're not required as much to focus on grammar. Answering questions wrong is a good thing...as long as you use it as a learning tool.


I agree with you, that seems to be duolingo's philosophy learn by making mistakes. Like you I was tired of translating into english and learnt a lot from doing the reverse tree. That said, I think there is some threshold of mistakes above which it becomes a negative. Otherwise, why not start with the reverse tree?


I did the reverse tree right after I finished the E from G tree. There were new words to learn and since the trees were built by different people there were different sentences as well. I never regretted it. I even had a shot at a grit with German, English and French and it worked out fine.


What is a reverse tree?


In this case is doing the English course for German speakers ;)


I recommend people reverse their tree after completing their initial tree. I tried the reverse tree for Spanish before I was done with the first one and got lost and confused. But, after I finished the first direction, I went back and tried it again. I was able to complete the reverse tree after that. :)


You can never overexpose yourself to language, in my opinion! I've found the reverse tree to present more grammatical challenges. If you ever intend to reach functional or academic levels of German the standard tree is insufficient.


Quote Usagiboy7:
There is the reverse course.
I am always curious if people plan to do reverse and ladder trees
Source: https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/29156220$comment_id=29165506

Starting a course from German on the web portal = writing / translating into German (on the right hand side) on a higher (better) ratio even on lower crown L0-L2 (L3) levels

(My) Tips and audio tricks for reverse and laddering trees

How do you do a reverse tree / The reverse tree helps - how to be able to listen to the target language audio:
- https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/29266026$comment_id=29267079
- https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/29262469$comment_id=29266698

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