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Friday, March 27, 2015

Language learning apps to use on the go

You have a smartphone, right? And you want to learn languages? Well, here's three apps you can use with your phone, right now, to enhance your learning (and not to count on exclusively). Enough with these stupid games already. Off we go.

1) Duolingo

This site counts on volunteers for the creation of the courses, which consist of writing and listening exercises, with some grammatical explanations. You can hear the native speakers, you can read the text and learn while playing and acquiring experience points as well as "lingots", which are little gems that you can use in order to unlock various interesting features. In general, Duolingo is a very good supplement for any method you may be using and there is an app you can download on your phone and take advantage of the dead time in the bus, for example.

2) Memrise

Memrise works differently. Users have created various, let's say, courses, which are actually flashcards which you learn via various simple games. Here things work in a simpler way. You make sure that you learn the words and you return to make sure that you remember them. There are various available courses for many languages and you can make your own. Definitely worth taking a look.

3) Anki

I've been using this one since 2009, when I had started learning spanish. It's simple and brilliant really. You download the app, you download a deck that interests you (or you create your own) and the app itself, according to your answers when you start learning and reviewing, will decide how often you will be seeing the cards. The ones that you remember better will be postponed for the longest, while the ones that cause you trouble will be the ones that you'll be seeing more often. As with Memrise, there are many decks created by users that you can choose from. With 20 words, 10 to 15 minutes per day, you can reach 1000-1200 words in two months (if you do no breaks), but always in combination with other learning materials.

And that's it. Three little apps to make your smartphone even smarter. Remember to enjoy your time while studying. Also, add me on Duolingo and Memrise, so that we can have some contests with the points. I mean, so that I can kick your ass. You think you got what it takes? Huh? Let's see!

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