I am constantly being told about apps that I should get for my phone. I would need a 64-gig phone to hold them all if I were to actually download all of them. As it is, I happen to be picky about the apps I have on my phone. I admit I have a handful of games on there, but most of my apps serve a useful purpose. Every now and then, I’ll come across an app that I think is so great that I have to tell my friends about it. That is the case with Duolingo.

Last week, I had parent-teacher conferences with Sam’s teachers to make sure everything is being done to ensure that he gets caught up as quickly as possible now that he is back in school after being out for three weeks with mono. His German teacher, Mr. Blevins, told me about Duolingo. He said it is a great app to aid in learning a new language, and he recommends it to all his students. I checked it out, and I love it! (If you don’t have a smartphone or would just rather not download the app to your phone, you access it online as well. Just click here.)

Since it was Sam’s German teacher who told me about the app, I tried it out with German first. I soon discovered that it is most helpful if you already have some knowledge of the language. So, I switched to Spanish, and now I’m addicted. It turns out, I already knew more Spanish than I realized, and Duolingo helps me add more knowledge every time I use it.

Since it is formatted like a game, it doesn’t seem like drudgery. In fact, it’s quite fun! It has many, many levels to be completed, higher levels being unlocked as lower levels are passed. It has a variety of question types, given in random sequence, and even utilizes your phone’s built-in microphone to test your pronunciation. It is available for several different languages, both for English-speakers to learn other languages and for speakers of other languages to learn English. If you’ve ever wanted to learn a 2nd (or 3rd or 4th) language, or if you just want to bone up on a language you already know, I encourage you to check it out.


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