1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Duolingo
  4. >
  5. A Portuguese Golden Owl


A Portuguese Golden Owl

Hello! Just a few minutes ago, I finished my Portuguese tree. I feel like I am still at an A1 level, but once a gild my tree, I will be firmly at an A2. I have only used Duolingo, which isn't advised, but something in my brain told me I had to finish my tree before using multiple sources. I wouldn't recommend this method - it is not conducive to the most important part of learning a language: the learning.

After this Duolingo course, I will be using a Memrise course of the 5000 most common Portuguese words. I think that this will greatly help my vocabulary grow, so I am not looking for any more help in that department. However, I am quite lost on how to further my Portuguese proficiency in other ways: grammar, writing, reading, speaking, and listening.

For grammar, I suppose it would be best to buy a grammar textbook, but if anyone knows of any free, comprehensive online resources, that would be appreciated.

I am completely lost on the writing part. I have no clue what I should do. Any ideas?

For reading, I would like to move onto books, but there is an overwhelming library of them at my disposal. Where do I stand at a shaky A1/A2 level? What is an achievable goal?

For speaking, I have heard of various sites and apps, such as italki and HelloTalk. Are these secure?

Finally, listening. I think my listening comprehension is quite lacking. Should I use Peppa Pig? Any Youtube channels you recommend? Music? TV shows? I'm quite sensitive to most material for older audiences, so something at a PG-13 or lower level would be preferred.

I was debating putting this in General or Portuguese forums, but I feel like maybe someone who isn't learning Portuguese could help with a few of these. If you have any additional suggestions, please share! I'm pretty new to language learning, so any advice you have to offer would be great! Thank you for your time.

November 30, 2019



Probably put it in the Portuguese forum. That way, more people who can speak Portuguese can help out. Maybe put it on both forums.


Did you read the last paragraph?


Sounds good. I found that after about six months of daily duolingo Portuguese I could read A folha de São Paulo (a newspaper). At first I had to look up many words, at least one in every paragraph--the vocabulary in duolingo Portuguese is palty, maybe 2000 words--but after several weeks of that, I found that I could make it through entire articles without resorting to dictionaries. You might consider on-line newspapers as well.

I don't have much good listening advice for you. I have watched several Brazilian movies and at least one series, 3%, on Netflix (three seasons). I found that I could understand it with either Portuguese or English subtitles but without them I was lost. If you want to understand the spoken language you'll need something besides duolingo. I consulted the blog Brazilian Gringo from time to time. Here is a sample featuring an interview with Megadeth guitarist Pedro Loureiro.

Boa sorte.



That’s an achievement in itself to have finished the tree - similarly to you I am mostly using Duolingo only. But this is mainly because I am currently doing a Masters degree and with all the essays I lack time to be using other resources whereas Duolingo is ideal for the odd five minutes here and there. In terms of grammar, grammar textbooks are probably the best way to go, and I have some of these (I hope to get back to them when I have more time). In terms of writing, I would reccommend writing everything you normally write in Portuguese if you can - notes, shopping lists, etc. Or even dedicate time to sit and write anything in the language - what you did today, plans for the week or about yourself and so on. Speaking is something I struggle with myself and find a lack of opportunity to do so. I would have to do more research on this but I’m sure you can find natives who are willing to talk to you for practice online and additionally some apps (Mondly, which I also use sometimes) require you to speak sometimes although it’s not an awful lot. Finally, in terms of reading, have a look online like Amazon, and I believe you can buy books with short stories for beginners and intermediate levels. I definitely saw Portuguese in the series, so that might be worth looking into.

All the best on the rest of your Portuguese journey!


Thank you so much! This is really helpful.


oh man I love Peppa Pig! I watch it on netflix in german, it´s slow and somehow clear (but certainly not like listening exercises from a textbook). You can try one or two eipsodes to see whether you enojoy the content, if not, I´m sure there are other beginner-friendly materials out there. Good luck!


Congratulations! Duo 28


Portuguese "Tips and notes" on the web portal: http://www.duome.eu/tips/en/pt

Or press the lightbulb button!
No, this won't work yet on the mobile (tapping) app as our EN->PT course is a classic tree.

German and Italian are the exception to the CEFR rule: http://www.duome.eu/notes/


If you really work through the given guides, you may not have to buy a grammar book immediately.
I have not bought a grammar book within my first 1,5 years.
And now three years have passed by, I still do not own one and I still have not read every single thread from the Help Index...there are threads about the Subjunctive, advanced verb stem conjugation tables,...

However, Lusófone created 13 course chapters on "Memrise Decks" from the Modern Brazilian Portuguse Grammar - a practical guide 2nd edition book:

Memrise Decks: https://decks.memrise.com/user/lus%C3%B3fono/courses/teaching/

Official site is still working right now (but won't for that long; only the 1-7 PT BR + Portugal courses will stay): https://www.memrise.com/user/lus%C3%B3fono/courses/teaching/

Learn a language in just 5 minutes a day. For free.