New blog post - when to repeat sessions in High Intensity

Repeating is a comfort blanket - most of the time, you don’t need to do it at all:


Looking forward to trying this next week with level 1- I will let you know how it works for someone who finds this difficult.
Just one Q - do we pause it when needed (I haven’t been pausing at all previously- a usually washing up etc.)

Yes, when needed - but if you’re a fast enough thinker to get away without pausing sometimes, then that’s great - the less you pause, the faster you go, of course - but it is important to be saying (or trying to say) most of every little challenge :sunny:

I’ll look forward very much to hearing how it goes for you :thumbsup:

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This may be a really stupid question and I appreciate I’ve just walked into what has probably been an ongoing discussion about a theory/method in development, and it might be a little off-topic too, but I’m going to ask it anyway…

Okay, so being a compulsive reader-of-all-the-rules, introductions, etc, I’ve got bits of contradictory information in my head. I’m sure I read somewhere a recommendation that we should aim for 20 minutes of learning a day and not try to do too much. It may be that this was written ages ago (it might be in the introduction to Course 1 in fact) and the thinking has moved on, but the HILT approach as discussed above seems to suggest that a slow and steady approach isn’t the best one - that we should maybe fry our brains for a day a week, or a day a month, or whatever: Big burst of intense learning followed by a pause. Is that now recommended as more effective than the bit-at-a-time approach, or are they both equally valuable?


The introduction to course 1 does indeed say

"2.Try to practice regularly. SSiW provides practice speaking and listening sessions you can use for this (the listening is particularly important). Making up your own sentences and listening to Welsh radio both help too. Practicing small chunks regularly (preferably daily) will be more helpful to you than doing large chunks less often… "

I have been thinking of mentioning it for some time, considering the new emphasis which is emerging, but thought Aran et al had enough on his/their hands for the moment.

It is on the introduction to the earlier course, as you say.

I’m sure it will get worked out in the wash as time goes on. :wink:


So am I correct in assuming that the ‘80% without using the pause button before moving on’ is forgotten about here. So the mantra is 'do a challenge using the pause button as necessary, do not repeat that challenge but go onto the next, using the pause button when necessary, and so on. Or is it 'do a challenge using the pause button until you can get 80% right without the pause button, then move on, but do not repeat any earlier challenges, after a gap in your learning?

I feel you’re suggestig the former but just want to be certain. Diolch

It’s my impression that the thinking has evolved since the course was first developed, and I have no problem with that.

The “do not repeat” message seems to be coming over fairly strongly of late, but as for use of the pause button, I think that it left up to the discretion of the learner.

Obviously, Aran & Co. will have the definitive word.

Yeah, I’m afraid you’re all essentially stuck in an on-going experiment in learning…:wink:

Back in 2009 (when I wrote those intros) they tied in with my experience to that point, and were what I sincerely believed to be the best advice I could offer. At that stage, my experience of intensive learning had been limited to residential courses - which work well, but aren’t a pattern people can follow easily in their ordinary day-to-day lives.

Since then, I’ve read feedback on here from hundreds of learners, I’ve fine-tuned the structure of the course significantly, and I’ve started doing one-on-one intensive work - all of which has made for a very steep learning curve.

However, although I’ve learnt a lot about how people can accelerate the process, it’s still very important that people find their own balance between the comfort zone and challenging themselves - so I’m not rushing to announce new ‘rules’. Instead, I’m talking about this here and on the blog, and encouraging people to test out the ‘high intensity’ approach - for some people, it will change their experience and attitude entirely - others may find that they’re much more comfortable sticking with a ‘bit every day’ and doing enough repetition to feel more certain that they’re learning successfully.

But yes, at some stage I will go through all the different bits and pieces that new learners run into, and try and make sure that we offer a clearer set of suggestions about the best approaches to try… :sunny:


Don’t be afraid - that’s exciting!


Undy…but I did have a mental image of us all as lab rats, spinning around in a wheel, with a man in a white coat urging us on saying “dal ati”, while feeding us crumbs of caws Cymraeg. :smiley:


I mostly use my phonenor tablet for challenges andvthe pause button does not work. Only occasionally do i get to the lap top. This means i just cannot comply with the requirement of starting to speak before Catrin.

I’d be a bit concerned about how that’s going to work for you, Di - you probably need either to try and improve how quickly you start answering, or consider figuring out a way to get a pause button to work - because if you’re echoing Catrin, you’re not going to get the core element of the learning process - how are you finding it working for you so far?

I tend to get a word or maybe two out before she speaks but certainly not the whole sentence

Hi, Di
until you manage to answer more quickly…,we might as well check what’s going on with the pause button, how about that? :wink:

Are you using Android or iPhone/iPad app?
And what happens exactly when you try to pause?
It just goes on as if you hadn’t tapped/clicked?
Or it does stop but then doesn’t start again at the same point?

Or else, have you tried doing the challenges using Chrome or Safari (or any other app you use for the web) just like you would on a computer?

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When away from home (which is often) I use Samsung Android phone or, if it is practicle to carry the extra weight, Lenova Yoga Android Tablet. I try with my finger or a stylus. Neither work straight away if at all.
Another problem is that the progrssoon line (for want of a better word) cannot be moved on. So if I do half a chsllenge and want to pick it up later I cant without going back to the beginning.

Mentioned it at Tresaith and another attender said he always uses laptop for that reason so not just me.

True it a
ll works fine on laptop but that doesnt help me utilise spare time.

About the problems with the app, I can call @jamesmahoney because I’ve never had that sort of problem and I don’t know what to say!

What I meant in the second part is that you can also do the challenges on a phone or tablet without using the app and using the same method you use with a laptop.

What app are you using right now to write on this forum?
Or to go around the web/internet?
Whatever it is,more likely chrome, open that to start with.

Or try clicking here:

From there everything works just like on the laptop, just…in smaller size!

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If you’re staying ahead of her - so you’re saying the words before she says, even if you’re speaking almost the whole way through her bit - that’s fine. But if she overtakes you, and you start echoing her instead of producing the words yourself, at that point the method isn’t working for you - is that your experience, or do you feel it’s going okay? How far have you got? How much are you using your Welsh in conversations? :slight_smile:

Can I just ask about the " High Intensity" thing. Where does one find those courses? Are they separate? Diolch

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It’s naming that goes back to my first experiments in this kind of learning - so now it’s kind of divided between what we do on our intensive residentials, and then the tasks that are built around the 6 month/6 minute a day courses… :slight_smile:

Hi Di,

Hope you are well.

Just a quick question, are you using the app or using the link(s) provided in the email(s) to access the lessons?

If you are using the links and accessing the challenges through a web browser, it may well be a fault with the browser. Often updating or using a different browser helps these issues.

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