Learn Thai Duolingo-style

Just a quick post for any Thai learners out there.

I’ve just subscribed to the Ling app. It’s basically Duolingo for Thai. If you like that format then is well worth getting.

There are 50 units to study, 10 units per level (beginner to expert). Each unit has 4 lessons, and then a speaking test, writing test and ‘exam’. Units look like this:

You get the star rating for how well you do. Vocab is introduced Duo-style with matching, translating, that sort of thing. You have the option of having transliteration, but I’ve taken that off. My main goal is to go back to the basics to learn reading and writing, so I want to read all the words in Thai!

There are some simple dialogues at the end of each lesson which help you practice the target language. You listen, and then add in the missing words to complete the dialogue. Nice feature.

The review feature is also really good. Above all, the app is fun. It’s a great way to pass the time of public transport and I’m certainly learning new vocab from it. I feel interested in studying Thai again after getting in the habit of using this app so I’d recommend it (for those staying here a while).

There are a couple of downsides to it.

  1. The speaking is hard! The chatbot feature, which allows you to practice short conversations to help use the new words, is a bit frustrating. It feels like you’ve got to get things perfect, and you have to say things quite slowly for them to get picked up too.
  2. There is now intro to the alphabet system, so really you’re learning the words just by sight. I mean, you could try and work out some patterns, but Thai is pretty tough for this! I recommend learning the Thai alphabet a bit before or alongside this app. There is another (free) app for that which I’ve found quite useful, but I can only seem to find it on my app store (can’t find link online, sorry). If it helps then it looks like this:

If you can find a link, please post in comments!

A year subscription isn’t cheap for Ling (1500 baht!) but I think it’s worthwhile. If you stay in the habit of using it of course!

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