Practising the challenges, how many times?

I was wondering how many times do you listen and practice each challenge. I find that I’m doing each one maybe 4 or 5 or even 6 times each. Or do you just do them once and hope that with the repetition in successive challenges will let you ‘get it’.

1 Like

Just to be clear… you do each challenge 4 or 5 times before moving on to the next challenge? There’s no rule against that sort if thing, but it’s certainly not necessary to repeat the challenges that often. I’d suggest you take the leap and move on to the next challenge after just one go, and when you have done five (different) challenges, go back for a repeat session. I bet you’ll see a dramatic shift in how much you’ll be able to retain from each challenge with that pattern.


Thanks Hendrik. That sounds like a better idea. I’ll give that a try.

1 Like

Just once when learning.
But now I do challenge 25 from each level on a rotation when I feel the need for a reminder.


Thanks for the tip wren.

1 Like

I’ve finished level 3 north and south, although, especially on the South challenges, I generally listened once to each lesson and moved on. Lately I’ve been going through the old course material and the way I’ve been doing it is much as Hendrick suggests, i.e. going through 5 lessons, (sometimes fairly slowly, using the pause and rewind), then repeating them, perhaps after listening to the last lesson (25) on the previous level. So, at the moment, I am on challenge 9 on level 3 (old course), and after I’ve finished 10, I will probably listen to 25 on level 2, then repeat 6-10 hopefully keeping pause/rewind to a minimum. I intersperse these with occasional listening of the double speed stuff (which I’ve downloaded all in one place). I just let that flow and don’t worry about missing stuff.

Thanks PhilgJones.

I’m only on week 5 of the 6 month course so challenge 10 on level 1 but what I have found works for me is I work through the challenge once with no pause button usually in chunks or 15 mins at a time.

Then I do my “exam conditions” run: Do the whole challenge in one go no pause button and keep a little tally of how many I get spot on, how many I say something close but not perfect and how many I fail to say anything.

The average number of things to say is about 130 that means I can “fail” 25 times and still hit 80% success rate. I find the keeping score really helps me get a perspective on how it has gone.

As long as I get 80% ok then I move on to the next challenge.

1 Like

Good strategy Simon. It’s really interesting to see how different people practice the challenges. Thanks for the reply.

@aran Hi Aran. Interesting to see the different responses. What’s your best advice from years of learners experiences.

In general the “official tip” I’ve seen more often on the Forum is the one @Hendrik wrote in his answer to you here.
There are a few answers from @aran on this topic around the Forum, that you might be interested in reading (especially the more recent, that refer to current versions of the course and are the most updated).

A couple of links:

p.s. my personal experience is that I just did the whole Level 1 and 2 without repeating any challenges (except the very first ones), even though in the beginning I was just repeating sounds and not even understanding where the words started and finished!
But going back to those lessons after one year, and after a few questions in the forum I can see I remember and understand pretty much everything!


I usually do each challenge twice, once with a fair few pauses as I struggle to remember which phrase matches which English phrase then the next time it seems to flow a lot easier. I did the early challenges a lot more though.

‘Official’ advice for the original material used to be to aim for 80% … something like 80% of material 80% correct 80% of the time. With the new material it’s recommended to carry on through each lesson in progression as all of the content gets repeated often enough to sink in well enough without worrying about it. The last lesson is a round up of that course’s material so the advice is once you’ve finished a course just repeat the last lesson every so often to keep everything fresh.

I normally repeat each challenge about 6 times, that gets me to about 80% accuracy. It was suggested to me (by Aran i think) that I try listening to a block of 8 lessons just once, then go back and repeat that. I did try this, but I found it so confusing, could remember very little, got quite discouraged and so went back to what I’d done originally and still do.

Hi Rob,

I repeat them lots of times on a rolling programme, as I find from experience that this ‘immersion’ helps things to gradually stick. Currently, I’ve reached lesson 10, so i’m cycling through lessons 5-10. This will thyen become 6-11 and so on. This won’t work for everyone but I’m lucky in that I do a lot of driving, train travel and living out of hotel rooms, all of which are ideal for lots of repeats of the lessons!!

All the best


Thanks for the tip Mike.

Thanks Howard. That’s what I’ve been doing

gosh - you all seem a quick lot - it usually takes me 9 times per challenge; I work on doing each challenge 3 times a day for 3 days - (on week 9 of 6 months) - but then I’m a hen dyn!

1 Like

Hi Paul,

I’m also a hen ddyn. We’re all different. It’s whatever works for you. I keep wondering why @aran advice is to listen once when so many of us seem to have do the challenges so many times to make it stick.


I’m one of those who didn’t repeat the challenges, but let me just make a couple of things clear:

  1. While I was doing the challenges the first time, I couldn’t understand most of the things I was hearing, I just tried to copy the sounds the best I could

  2. At the end of each challenge I felt I didn’t remember anything of what I had just “learnt”

But the guidelines said it didn’t matter, all I needed to do was saying something in the pause before Cat.
Since I had never tried to learn a language with this method, I thought I couldn’t tell if it would work or not until I’d try - after all, the worst that could happen was that I’d have to do them all again later!

Maybe being lazy helps. :wink:

And I’m sure another thing helped me even more: having learnt most of the English I know into the wild rather than at school, I’m used to the feeling of trying to speak without really knowing what I’m doing, making lots of mistakes and learning words and sentences on the go.
So I don’t need to wait to feel ready to move on, to move on!