Hey guys! Brand new here, and I have a couple of questions

Hello everyone. I’m new here, so I’m still trying to work my way around this forum. First of all, I hope I’m doing this right, as I’m not sure if this is just a post I’m doing or a “new topic” which is what it says? (Is that something different??)
Anyway, if that’s one question, but my main question is this. I completed level 1, and now halfway through level 2, but I can honestly not remember anything at all! I’ve been doing quite well on Duolingo, but for some reason I can’t seem to remember much of what is being said on here. Am I destined to fail, or have you all experienced this and ended up being a prodigy? Haha.
Thank you for any help!


A very warm welcome to the forum, Fisherman… :slight_smile:

Hmmm… interesting question… there are usually two possibilities with this kind of situation…

1 - you’re not really assessing ‘remembering much’ very well - ie you’re being distracted by the fact that there’s always new stuff coming in, and that the spaced repetition is tough and makes you feel as though you’re forgetting stuff (when you’re actually still going through the necessary repetition process to build real, long term memory), or

2 - you need more repetitions than is usual (we see this in somewhere roundabout 5% of our learners, at a rough guess) - but in that case, you’d probably have felt that you were struggling a long way before Level 2.

So, follow up question - if you return to (say) Challenge 10 of Level 1, does it feel easier for you, or does it feel pretty much as difficult as it was first time? :slight_smile:


Thank you for your reply. I made a mistake, I said level 2 when I actually meant LESSON 2. I started learning Spanish a few years ago and I could remember things quite well, so I suppose it’s just the case of practising at Welsh. I think I need to study the words a bit longer so I remember eavh sentence, and maybe play the lesson back until I can reply to the “questions” flawlessly. Would you agree?

Replaying each challenge until you can fill in the gaps without flaws is kind of extreme. Just go from challenge to challenge, and if you feel overwhelmed you can always take a step or two back. The magic of SSiW is that everything gets repeated in later challenges, and you’ll be amazed at what sinks into your brain without you being consciously aware of the process.
So, trust the system, let the spaced repetition work its magic, and most importantly: have fun and enjoy yourself! Pob lwc (good luck)!


Welcome to the forum!!

If you’re on lesson 2 then it’s as Aran has said, you’re not assessing “remembering” accurately.

I’m doing the opposite to you. If finished the Welsh material and now I’m going through Spanish. My method is to get to each multiple of 5 before assessing how much I’ve remembered.

I tend to find the hard bits for me (like conoci and conoce) tend to settle down further down the line.

So try giving yourself until 5 then 10 etc. See how you get on.


Welcome to the forum! My theory about your earlier comments is this:- If you are looking at words as well as speaking them, you may be doing twice as much work as you should possibly be. The absolute best, ideal way to use SSi courses is to restrict yourself to speaking only and the reason behind this is that it mimics the entirely natural way that children learn languages. If you would like to have that reassurance that we all chase from the written word, then you are possibly doubling your work-load. As a result, you are asking your brain to assimilate more work and may make slower progress. You will still succeed as you are, but you may like to ignore the written word for the rest of course 1, say, or a few challenges at least, and pick it up later… Let us know how you get on, and
Good luck!


I can’t add anything to the advice above but Welcome to the forum :grinning:


Yikes, absolutely not!

You’re trying to learn the language - not to be able to ‘do a lesson flawlessly’.

The lessons are practice sessions - they’re not meant to be mastered, just worked through.

You’re not meant to be remembering everything - by a LONG shot!

I would recommend pushing on through to 5 or 10 and then seeing how you feel about Lesson 1 - if it’s just as tough as the first time you did it, you might be in my original ‘2’ - if you notice that it’s easier by then, you’re in ‘1’… :slight_smile:


Thank you everyone for your answers! I’ll certainly be using this advice. I’m a perfectionist so it’s very frustrating for me. I will just listen though, and see what happens when I get to lesson 5. Thanks all!


No help from me, just Croeso, Welcome and you will find all sorts of help here, some linguistic, some on using the Forum! To quote as I just did, you just highlight and click on the result. Unless you are using the app, in which case you need to ask someone else, as I am hopeless with that!
To be sure of getting someone’s attention you put @ before their Forum name and as you start to type, you’ll get offered a list of possibles and need to click on the one you want, like @henddraig or @f1sh3rman99 which I got as soon as I typed 1 after f!!!
“Really useful how to stuff…” is a useful topic, click here to see and use left arrow above to get back!
And yes you did start a new topic. Use the big Q above to search for topics but start new if nothing seems to fit!
Also, where are you? It would help you a lot to get chats in Welsh.

Perfectionism does make it tougher - unless you can manage to switch the focus of your perfectionism from ‘getting every phrase correct’ to ‘doing the course in exactly the right way’… :slight_smile:


And I would add to Aran’s reply by suggesting trying to listen as perfectly as you can. We very often don’t (me, very much included).


Helo Mr Perfectionist @f1sh3rman99 :slight_smile: Welcome to the forum. Here’s ex Mrs Perfectionist actually one of them who just decided with a huge help of @aran and the rest of the members of this forum, to throw that perfectionism away and live more freely from then on! :slight_smile:

OK, this was a bit of a joke but now siriously.

From my own experiences, perfectionism will do you only harm as you won’t be able to fully enjoy the lessons and this for you won’t be able to learn as much as you woul if you’d take the whole matter at least a bit lightly.

I’m not sure how much this could help you but some of other members say my own journey described in Tatjana - Progress reports helped them to overcome some of their own troubles and difficulties. The story goes from very heavy stubborn perfectionist being determined that the system does not actually work for her to the (kind of) Welsh speaker /(with lots of errors even nowdays) who nowdays is not afraid to speak with anyone and most of all is not afraid of doing any, even the worst grammar or other mistake while speaking.

Apart from that: do what others say, what means don’t endlessly repeat the challenges, don’t be afraid to make mistakes and don’t be afraid to speak loudly if even with yourself or the nature around you for the beginning. You started the journey which would be hard from time to time aswell, but the things will pay off at the end.

Well done on starting your way of becoming a Welsh speaker and welcome to the forum and this brilliant community once again.

Tatjana :slight_smile:


Hi and welcome, Fisherman.
Just double check that you are on Level 1, Challenge 2. If so that’s great. You don’t want to inadvertently go to the slightly older “courses/lessons”. I guess that you’ve picked the N or S Wales variation to suit your preference.

Back to your Q1 -
Yes, “Topic” means a thread or folder of original post and replies. So you did well. Alternatively you can browse through the other topics and dive in if you want.

Incidentally, I find the “Tiny questions with quick answers - continuing thread” quite handy for, well, miscellaneous “Tiny questions with quick answers” :slight_smile:


Hi, I’m also new to the boards, and my question is about the perfectionism issue. I’m not sure I see how to mesh “plowing ahead, making mistakes” with Aran’s statement at the end of Lesson 1 that I’m ready to go on when I can get 80% of the sentences before Catrin says them. It takes me 4-5 times through a lesson before I can spit the words out fast enough to beat Catrin most of the time. After 8 days, I’m ready to start Lesson 3. Am I being too perfectionist?

Thanks, Sheila
P.S. Is it okay to tag a related question onto an existing question, or is it better to start a new topic?

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I think @aran would say that’s old advice now. Certainly you don’t need to get 80% ‘right’ before moving on. Newer advice mught be to do 1,2,3,4,5 and then, but only then, go back to 1, and be surprised at how much has stuck.

Pob Lwc

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Hi Sheila, welcome to the forum :slight_smile:
Could I ask first, are you doing the old course or the new levels?
Since Aran made the recordings with the ‘80%’ statement, the course has developed somewhat and @Aran himself has said that ‘80%’ is no longer the ‘rule’. I’ve tagged him here because he can explain better than I can, but basically don’t worry about reaching the ‘perfect 80% of the time’ - it’s not necessary. The amount of repetitions people do vary - some do go over the lessons more than others, and that’s fine, but the main thing is not to dwell too long on them. The new material is designed with spaced repetition, so you will find that even things you struggle with come back later. Also, you don’t have to get the sentence out perfectly before Catrin comes back in - as long as you say something, even if it’s a different ending to the sentence, that’s progress.

A lot of people have said they’ve had the same feelings about this, but the advice is always to plough on. It seems counter-intuitive because it’s not the way any of us are used to being taught :wink: but plough on - the system really does work! :smiley:

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Helo Sheila, Croeso, Welcome to the Forum! I just had a thought. We are taught in school about right answers getting ticks and wrong ones getting nasty red crosses, or at least we were in the mists of the past when I was in school, but when we learn our first language we are very keen to get whatever we are wanting, at least I was! We (I) don’t wait to get things perfect! We yell ‘me! me!’ and learn ‘I’ later. We get praised for saying anything at all that makes sense at first! So maybe the intuitive thing to do is press on and just say something after all!

Yeah, sorry, we need to re-record all the intros and outros that say stuff like that. It seemed like the right advice at the time, but we’ve learnt a LOT more about the different ways brains work since then!.. :slight_smile:

I originally started doing the old lessons on the phone app three years ago and never made it beyond lesson 3–because I was trying to get it perfect. A week or so ago, I found the website and started with the Level 1 Challenge 1, which is what I now refer to as Lesson 1. Because I had listened to the introduction with the old lessons, I skipped the introduction until just before I posted my comment, but the 80% comment was at the end of the new lesson 1 and possibly 2 as well.

Well, I can see that I’ve been working at this harder than I needed to, particularly since it’s trying to imitate how Catrin pronounces each word that has been taking longer than anything. I’ll try going through these next few lessons faster. Since I don’t have anyone to speak Cymraeg with, I go around all day making up sentences from beth dw i’n gwybod a trio dweud o yn y Gymraeg. Okay, that’s my attempt to try to put things together even if that isn’t the way you say, “what I know and trying to say it in Welsh.”