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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brennan546158

Duolingo Changed my language learning life!!

Hey guys!

Just wanted to make a post about how much Duolingo has changed the way I learn. I love this community and so I thought I would share a little bit of my language learning story!

My language learning journey began when I served as a missionary for my church a few years ago in Mozambique, Africa. They speak Portuguese there (Hahah who knew, right?).

The process of serving in a certain country is up to the Church's missionary department, so I literally knew nothing about Portuguese prior to going there or about Mozambique in general.

Mozambique was so wild! I had never been to Africa before or even left the USA. I remember getting off the plane and just being awe-struck as I realized everything was in Portuguese...and hardly anyone spoke English!

I was trained beforehand at a language center for about 7 weeks, but I really was only able to say "Oi, bom dia!".... Looking back, it's crazy to realize how little I knew before going to the country.

However, the people embraced me and my terrible "Portunhol". Which, I obviously appreciated.

Fast-forward to my year mark on my mission and I unfortunately injured my achilles tendon/back and had to return home early. I was feeling a million emotions at once, but the one thing most forefront in my mind was "How am I gonna keep up on my Portuguese????" (As you can probably tell, I DEFINITELY had my priorities straight lol).

It was around this time after coming home that I found Duolingo. I had never used the app before, but finding it was life-changing.

I had all but given up on continuing my Portuguese studying, or any language studying for that matter. However, finding Duolingo opened so many doors for me.

At first I started with Portuguese, I found a HUGE group of language learners who wanted to practice. It was and still is very awesome. Duolingo gave me tips / stories and my language partners helped me to achieve greater fluency and taught me to ENJOY learning the language rather than force myself to do it out of habit.

Now I have friends all over Mozambique, Brazil, and Portugal who are always down to just hangout and chat. I feel like I've carved out my own little Portuguese island wherever I go!

I never would have 'kept up on my Portuguese without it and that would have meant that all of the people I've gotten to know in Mozambique, Brazil and Portugal, wouldn't even be part of my life like they are today.

I plan on finishing my Portuguese tree by New years!! I have so many goals for 2019, but looking back at how much Duolingo has blessed my life in 2018 has been so awesome.

If anyone needs sites or fun series to watch in Portuguese, drop a comment below and I would be more than happy to share.....because I have a bunch of them hahaha!

Happy new years everyone! Feliz ano novo para todos!!! :)

December 28, 2018

26 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/spiceyokooko

Brilliant! Thanks for sharing your story here, it's very motivational!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brennan546158

Thanks for commenting. I've never shared any part of my story before...so I appreciate the kind words :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/belstar128

Before duolingo i thought language learning was one of the most boring time consuming things you could do but duolingo made it way simpler to start now language learning is my biggest hobby its fun and handy.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brennan546158

Exactly.

I think the hard part is that "language schools" put emphasis on grammar rules rather than learning the rules and then putting them into practice.

Duolingo teaches you all the grammar rules in a fun and easy way, but it also beats just watching TV all day haha.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mattoleriver

It is so refreshing to read a post from somebody who recognizes and appreciates the gift that is Duolingo. This entire thread has been a treat!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gracebirdgirl

That's very inspiring!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brennan546158

Thank you! Happy new year!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Davey944676

You probably learnt more of the language than you realised when you were in Mozambique. Incidentally, does the Portuguese spoken there vary significantly from that in Brazil?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brennan546158

I definitely agree. The "starting phase" of learning Portuguese was definitely jump-started by me actually living in the country.

Portuguese in Mozambique is so funny, it is considered the country's official language, but each region of the country has it's own dialect from before they were conquered by the Portuguese themselves. A good majority of Mozambicans view Portuguese as a remnant of the Portuguese rule, so there were many people I ran into who hadn't even learned Portuguese because of how much they wanted to maintain their "people's language", i.e the dialects.

These were often times more indigenous individuals, however even on the local bus or taxi, you'll hear people speak strictly in dialect in the country's capital.

That being said, Portuguese in Mozambique is spoken as it is in Portugal. There are a few colloquial phrases that differ due to the continent differences, but they stay very true to the language.

If you ever are really interested, there's this cool video from langfocus outlining the major differences between Brazil vs. Portugal Portuguese : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nur6WwpmyBo

Cheers!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Plazation

Cheers I kinda need these motivational things.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brennan546158

RIght?

I can't tell you how many times I've watched time organizational videos or watched polyglot YouTube videos in order to keep at it lol.

Quick question, what resources have you found useful for French and German? I just barely started a few days ago and I'm really enjoying them both.

Thanks in advance!! :)


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