Learn Russian: Update on Duolingo and Red Kalinka

I blogged previously about my experiences with Duolingo and also about a book I’ve purchased from Red Kalinka. After another week of practice, here’s an update:

Out of the several tools and books I have to help me, I’m still finding Duolingo is the easiest one to motivate myself with, purely because of its bite-size chunks accessible from my phone. If my brain is too tired to tackle the text book or watch a Youtube video, it can still cope with a five minute quick fix from Duolingo -and often that five minutes extends -especially when I am told I have met my daily target, so the incentive is to beat my daily target.
bathroomI’m still enjoying the random phrases, but I’m getting more out of the app now since I began in earnest to read the comments against each sentence. (Not being one for reading instructions, I’d only actually discovered them last week.) I find if I have a query about why I got something wrong, the chances are others will have wondered the same, and it will be dealt with in the comments. Good! I guess my next stage is to add comments of my own when required.

Again I like the repetitive nature of the sentences and word groups. It makes it easier to memorise the many different endings if you keep hearing and having to type them in – even when you can’t quite remember which case that was.

One aspect I do miss, however, is the Speaking. I discovered this week that some languages do have that option, although unfortunately it appears that Russian doesn’t (yet) I wonder how good the speaking exercises are? I suppose I could sign up to the French one to find out, but I probably won’t. Anyway, I have the real deal with Svetlana every week at UCLAN 🙂

As for Red Kalinka, I’ve been working through the first couple of texts from their first reading book that I bought last week. I love the simplicity and clarity of the texts, and as I’ve been playing the sound as I read, I realise they are easy to memorise and I can usefully adapt them to myself and my own circumstances. The only thing I wish is that there were a space between each sentence to give me time to repeat , before the next sentence comes along, but I realise they are not really meant for that. I can just pause the sound though – and when I get a bit better, I can try reading along at the same time!

I hadn’t looked further at the Red Kalinki site until today when I discovered they too have an app, so I downloaded it just now to try.

They offredkalinkaer three new words a day: sounds like a good thing to add to my learning Russian box of tricks. I had to smile at my very first word from the app, though:
губы – lips

Nothing to do with the word itself,  but the fact that they’re obviously the lips of an attractive young woman, and in the short time I have been learning Russian and researching Russian teaching materials, I have come to the conclusion that all Russian language teachers are young, female, beautiful, and usually blonde! I plan to back up my conclusion with more research in a future post!
There’s also a weekly dialogue, good, but too much for me along with the stuff I’m using, and a link to their (paid for) online course, which of course is fine. My plan is to persevere with the three new words a day and see how I get on.

By the way – I think Red Kalinka is linked to Russian for free, another site I’ve been on recently.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *