Duolingo’s Dramatic Update

I have been using Duolingo for almost 4 years. My current streak is 1416. I’ve been doing this for a while.

I don’t remember if it was last year or if it was the year before, but they did an update and they completely changed my entire lesson plan. They added things that I’d never done before and gave me the gold and the purple icons as if I had finished the lessons and mastered them when in fact I had never even started learning those lessons. I felt like I had to start learning all over again.

So more than a week ago, they updated their app again to this new layout which pissed a lot of people off, so much so that there is a petition to change it back. People hate this new update. I am kind of one of them, but, and hear me out, I am doing something to help myself learn.

This new update does not allow you to go back to previous lessons, so that’s why it didn’t work for me because they pushed me so far ahead of the lesson plans that they thought that I had already mastered before, when in fact I still haven’t even gotten to those lessons. So I was supposed to be on unit six, and they ended up bringing me all the way to unit 24. I tried doing the lessons in unit 24, but they were so far out there that I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t go back and I couldn’t go forward. I was pretty much screwed.

So I thought okay, I’m going to click on that broken heart at the bottom of the screen that has the number 48 in the screenshot and practice all of the mistakes that I had already made prior to the update and see what happens after that. So after I did that it said keep going and it kept allowing me to practice mistakes that I had made in the past and it was actually helping me go back to the old old lessons that I had made mistakes on prior to the previous update that changed everything for me. I thought, this is great, I’m able to go way back and keep learning those old lessons that I wanted to go back to learning. But, what is that going to accomplish? I need to go back to learning the regular way.

Since I am a Duolingo plus member, I have the ability to delete a language lesson plan so I can start over, and that’s what I did. But that’s nice for me because I am a plus member, there are people out there who aren’t paying for Duolingo, so they don’t have that ability. They have no choice.

Okay, so since I deleted all of my German lessons and started over at unit 1 in the very beginning with basics one, it has taken me a week and I’m just now in unit 5. I’m kind of glad that I’m able to go at this pace with this new Duolingo because since I cannot go back, I can only go forward and I can actually continue learning where I refused to continue learning before. Because for the last couple of years, all I’ve been doing is my lessons that I’ve already known and not going forward. I’m doing that because I have a learning disability and it’s hard to learn new words and also with German it’s hard sometimes because they switch the words around and I’m already dyslexic and it just makes my brain hurt lol.

So, I have no option other than to keep going forward and hopefully I will continue learning and maybe I will actually be fluent in German one of these days. I’ve been doing this so lazily all this time for the last couple of years by refusing to go forward and now I’m being forced to go forward. This is probably a good thing for learning this language. And maybe that’s the reason Duolingo did that, because they want to force me to keep moving forward.

The website on my browser is still the old website. Someone on Twitter who responded to me about the new update said that the update on their browser is the new update. So they don’t really have a choice, but I still have a choice with my browser. So if I start to get frustrated with the new lessons, I can just go on the computer and do the lessons for as long as I need to because I can go back on the browser. So I’ll just keep going forward in the app on my phone, but I can continue going back on the browser on my computer.

I need to be able to keep doing the same lessons repeatedly to allow my brain to let the words sink in. That’s why I have not gone forward in these lessons because I don’t feel like I’m ready to go forward. But at some point, I have to, otherwise what’s the point of learning a language if I’m not learning all of the language?

So I think that if someone is learning with Duolingo and this same thing happened to them that happened to me and you’re stuck in a situation that you cannot control, you know, just pay for one month and that way you can delete all of your lessons and start over from the very beginning like I did. It’s just one month and you can cancel before your month is over. There might even be a free trial, I don’t know. But don’t give up.

And also, don’t worry about losing all of your old progress because it’s all in your mind, right? All that German that I learned before is still in my head, and since I couldn’t go forward in the app because they pushed me too far ahead, then what’s the point if I can’t just start over? I don’t have that hang up of needing to keep everything that I had worked hard for because I can continue working hard and go forward instead of quitting. And also, it still says that I have learned the same amount of words that I had learned before I deleted my lesson. So all of that is still there, I’m just learning from the very beginning all over again and I’m getting now to the point where I’m starting to get into the lessons that I refused to go forward with.

So just pay for a month, delete the lesson, start over and continue working to learn the language that you’re learning and don’t be so frustrated with everything. It’s not going to work if it’s not fun, and it’s not fun if it’s work.

Learning German with Duolingo


I mentioned that I found my father’s family and I discovered I had a brother who happens to have been born in Germany, and he is currently living in Germany in the same city he was born. Luckily he speaks English, so there is no communication issue, but I am interested in learning German so if the day ever comes when I can visit him, I would like to know the language so I won’t be lost in translation if I decide I want to do some sight seeing when I visit. I also have an aunt and uncle who suddenly switch to German every now and then, and it does get frustrating when you’re the only person in a room full of people speaking German.

So I went to Google a little over a month ago to find a website or a program I could buy that would teach me German. I thought for sure I would find something that was overly expensive, but I was surprised to find Duolingo was free.

I’ve learned “Basics 1” which was pretty easy. “The” which I think I’ve finally really mastered. There are certain times that I’m still learning when to use certain “the” words, but I’m getting it. “Basics 2” was a little difficult, like there are some words like we are that translate to wir sind, you are which translates to ihr seid, they are which is sie sind. They also taught ich trinke, du trinkst, er/sie/es trinkt, wir trinken and ihr trinkt. These all mean like I am drinking, you are drinking, he/she/it is drinking, we are drinking and you are drinking. These are still a little confusing because there are 5 ways to say that someone is drinking lol. I have to keep in mind the different ways, which brings me to accusative case which teaches not just drinking, but eating bread and read a book or newspaper. This stuff is hard. Phrases added several new words which I finally learned, and learning words is easier than learning the many different ways to say a verb. Then I did Intro which teaches many different ways to say the word speak, understand, is called (meaning like He is called Karl) and someone is from somewhere.

Learning a new language is hard ya’ll! But I’m more than happy to learn a new language. I have a learning disability, so I have to do the practice lessons for several days after I master a section, because even though I have the golden icon, I still haven’t really mastered those sections. I also have to speak into the microphone in these lessons so they can tell if I’m saying the words or phrases correct. So not only do I have to learn how to spell German words, and learn the words and what they mean, but I also have to learn how to pronounce them correctly so I don’t sound like I’m saying the wrong word(s).

I could learn any language they have to offer, and a lot of people I’ve spoken with on the website are learning multiple languages at the same time. If you thought learning one language was difficult, try learning 5 or 10 lol. Yeah, I think I will stick to one language for now.