This Anki Flash Card Deck forecast shows how fast Anki helps you download foreign language fluency into your brain.
See how few reviews are forecast in the coming days? Why is that?
It’s because Anki helped me do the heavy lifting in the last two weeks.
How can I claim an increase in fluency? What are those “cards” and “reviews”?
Each one of those cards has an English sentence (not a simple vocabulary word) on front and the French translation on the back. Anki serves up only the cards you need to practice, and doesn’t serve up the ones you already know. (It knows based on your feedback. If a card is new, it assumes you don’t know it, until you tell it otherwise.)
Two weeks ago, I couldn’t actually speak a word of French. I could recognize some, but only with a dictionary to hand, and Google translate. Maybe I could have remembered “Bonjour,” but that’s about it. That’s after sporadic “study” in French for decades.
After two weeks with Anki cards, using the method outlined here, I can order food and drink, give and understand directions for walking or driving, and express likes, dislikes, and preferences. And much more …
Working out with this new method using Frenchpod101.com and Anki, has changed all that in dramatic fashion. It’s even better than immersion, because you get targeted, systematic workouts in actually speaking French. (Immersion leaves so many un-filled gaps in one’s knowledge, unless you already have a foothold on fluency. This method I recommend is for beginners.)
See the tall bars on the left? That was the heavy lifting — intensive working out with the flash cards the last couple of weeks. See the shorter bars to the right? That’s the Anki forecast for short and sweet reviews of these French sentence cards in the future.
When you study with Frenchpod101.com and Anki in the method I outline here, you pretty much download entire seasons of Frenchpod101.com into your brain over a few days. And that’s a great thing, since Frenchpod101.com has so many seasons and lessons.
Here’s a chart showing more detail of the “heavy lifting” to download French fluency into my brain:
The green bars are “young” cards, or cards you’d seen before but are still young. The red bars are those for which your brain needed a refresh. The blue bars represent absolutely new cards you’ve never seen before.
The data in the chart above shows a brain download of about 20 cards per day. (True, it’s charting only the cards I added to the deck; however, as you can see from the other charts above, those cards have been learned, by and large. Only an increasingly small amount of review [see the forecasting card at the top] is required to consolidate them in memory.)
21 cards per day is nothing special, really, with Anki. It’s so much more powerful.
What to do now if you’d like to experiment with my method?
Use the step-by-step quick start in this post: How an Introvert Can Master an Entire Season of Frenchpod101.com in 2 Days.
You won’t have to spend any money, by the way, although I do recommend you get the Premium subscription to Frenchpod101.com. You’ll probably go for it as soon as you see how amazing their curriculum is, and how reasonable their prices, and how fast you’ll learn by combining Frenchpod101.com with Anki flash cards in the way I recommend.