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“15 minutes a day can teach you a language…. What can 15 minutes of social media do?” -Duolingo

A few weeks ago, my husband and I decided that instead of our nightly TV show episode, we would spend 15-20 minutes a day learning and practicing our Spanish! 

Our ward (or church congregation) recently became half Spanish-speaking and half English-speaking. In order to minister to everyone better, Alex and I are practicing our Spanish. I downloaded several language apps and Duolingo was by far my favorite! 

It’s not just for learning Spanish, there are dozens of languages to choose from. I am working on my French at the same time! I love how interactive it is, and goes at a great pace; not too fast, not too slow. I am using the free version and I haven’t felt like I needed to pay for the upgrade. 

Meet Duo, the green owl mascot for the app. 

Duo walks you through every step of the way; first, helping you pick the language(s) you want to learn. Then he takes you to the home screen. On this screen, you’ll see different categories you can work on (people, phrases, schedule). There are different levels for each category and once you achieve level 1 on each category in that section, you unlock more categories! 

Duolingo greetings

Duo also teaches you how to do each of the practices or “games”. Here are some of my favorites.

Example of Duolingo game options

During this game, you’ll select one of four pictures that corresponds to the word in the question. This game is mostly used during the very beginning stages of your games, but it is great to have pictures! It makes for easy points. 

Example of Duolingo app game

In this activity, you’ll translate the sentence using a word bank at the bottom of your screen. I especially love this activity because it switches from translating into English and translating into Spanish. It’s a great help if you have trouble with grammar (like me). 

Watch out for wrong or missed questions, because every question you get wrong, you lose one life. Everyday you get 5 lives! After you use your 5, you can either pay for more lives, or wait until the next day when they replenish them. 

Duolingo owl

Overall, I have been thoroughly enjoying myself on the app. I know that I will not be fluent in any language after Duolingo, but I am LEARNING. I am so grateful for our amazing accessibility to information in our time, and I am excited to see what else I can learn.

Hasta luego! 


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