I made 450 lingQs in one 20 minute recording. Is that too much?

Is making 450 lingQs in one 20 minute recording too much? Im listening to chapter 4 of Polish Tom Sawyer.
Usually i make a lingQ when im not 100% sure about a word, but i may recognize having seen it somewhere before.

The main problem is that after making 450 lingQs i feel like doing the flashcards is kinda pointless, just because thats wayy too many. Instead my strategy is to just listen&read the 20 minute recording until i memorize it. Is that what were supposed to do? Or should i only listen to it 4 or 5 times, leaving some(alot) of words un memorized and proceed to some other recording?

Also I think Polish might not have as many intermediate short length stories as Spanish or French?

I ignore if there is an (un)official way of how we are supposed to use LingQ. For instance, I don’t use flash cards (here) and only if I’m not sure if I understood what I read then a read it once more.

This is what has worked for me (at least for the passive skills):

  • Be careful with that “I’m not going to the next lesson until I’ve completely mastered this one with absolute perfection” attitude, I know from experience that it’s tiring at best (After 500K repetitions I realized that I didn’t really learn 10K words in Japanese).

  • Let the blue words get yellow and then fade into the ‘known’ color naturally after reading it so many times in different contexts. Raw memorization can only take you so far. It’s useful to help you gain some initial confidence, to get you some what used to the weirdness/awesomeness of the language.

-Speak Spanish :slight_smile:

If you are gonna invest that much brain power memorizing things, I’d recommend you use some frequency lists to get that initial punch and you’ll see that you won’t create 400 lingqs next time.

This is my humble opinion, let’s see what others think.

I avoid reading the text if it has so many unknown words.
Make you 450 lingqs or even 100 lingqs for once, you can remember more or less only 20 new words for one session.
I prefer following the method ‘step by step’.
I would like not to be overloaded and not to lose my motivation to go ahead.
Unfortunately, I saw for my 8-year presence in lingq.com so many people who started very quickly and then gave up having overcharged and lost their motivation.


Making LingQs is good. The purpose is not to only make enough LingQs so that you can retain that new vocabulary immediately after studying that lesson. So my answer is that, yes, you should proceed to some other recording. The memorisation of those LingQs will come not immediately but instead when you see them repeatedly in different contexts.

Here’s what I do: I make LingQs for everything I don’t know and I’m not concerned with how many I make. What I’m more concerned with as I read are LingQs that I previously made. If I come across LingQs that I know or can at least determine the meaning from the context, I change these to level 2. Then I do flashcards with my level 2 and 3 LingQs only. That way I am not pressuring myself to do flashcards with level 1 LingQs that I’ve only just come across for the first time.


Here’s my take on that. It doesn’t matter how many lingQs you make but my suggestion is that don’t try to memorize them and don’t expect to learn them immediately. I remember when I got so frustrated because I immediately forgot the words which I’d just learned. Then I had an epiphany when Steve told me in one of his Youtube videos that it is totally okay to forget in language learning. Sometimes you need to see the same word 10 times in 10 different contexts for it to stick to mind. So relax and keep reading.

Personally, I don’t use flashcards and I don’t think studying or reviewing individual words without a larger context is effective. But I do use different lingQ levels. If I know the meaning of a lingQ without clicking on it for example, I change its status to Level-2. If I am pretty sure what it means, I change it to Level-3. Eventually, I make it a “known word”. But whatever you do, the key thing is reading A LOT.

Absolutely not. You should make as many LingQs as you can. Don’t feel that you need to review them all in flashcards. As others here have said, you will review them in this and future lessons in context and over time will learn what they mean and remember them. As you do so, just increase their status until they become white. Review is there for some variety. You can also review specific word lists or phrases you may want to focus on. Use tags to label these kinds of terms. But, definitely, create tons and tons of LingQs! Take a look at Steve’s profile…Login - LingQ


LingQ every word you come across which you don’t immediately know the meaning of IMHO. This is so if you re-read the text (which is likely) or come across the word again, you’ll have one meaning which has already been carefully chosen by you.

If you have a large volume of words you can tag the ones you feel seem more general to allow you to focus on those for learning vocab.

If you have a large amount of vocab you would like to use, you could enter it into a better flashcard app and those usually introduce new words to you bit by bit - allowing you to get used to a subset of words before tackling new ones.

How much you would like to repeat reading or listening to a given section is up in the air really. But just be aware of diminishing returns - the first few repeats show good gains, but the remaining stubborn words and phrases could take a long time. Time that is better spent, in my opinion, reading new texts and gleaning all the easy-to-remember content from them.

In general I don’t re-read that much, but I do re-listen a lot. I might reread a text twice (so 3 times in total) but listen to it easily in excess of 10 times across a couple of weeks.

I’m not saying I have the perfect ratio which you should copy - I’m just giving you an example of what I am doing. You are better to make your own change to your learning habits based on your own review of how things are going for you. Then try those changes for a month or however long is appropriate and see whether things are working out better.

Tweek, review, tweek, review…


I used to feel the need to review every flashcard/word for every LingQ I made. It piled on fast. I stopped worrying about micromanaging and I just reviewed old content once in a while. I could be doing myself a disservice by not doing flashcard/SRS reviews, but I don’t stress it.

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It wouldn’t matter if you made a thousand LingQs in a lesson. The more the merrier. I personally don’t mind making and having a lot of yellow lingQs in lengthier chapters, and moving on. Back when I joined LingQ fresh from university language study, it took a long time to stop being a perfectionist because of it. Then Steve put out his “powerful snowball” video ( Input Based Language Learning, a Powerful Snowball - YouTube ) and I started changing my mindset. I had wrongly been trying to build that “perfect little snowman”. It took ages to shake off the mindset that words are “known” only if I can produce them in output (writing and speaking).

So now I don’t wait 'til I ‘master’ anything; I just move on to other lessons and revisit old ones. If I ‘nearly’ know a word I’ll move it to 3, then maybe a week or so later filter for these on the vocab page. After checking, sometimes I realise I’ve absorbed even a hundred or more words, just from patiently reading and listening to long chapters once a day for several days. I’m also understanding more and more what used to be only white noise.

I find I like importing my own texts, particularly dramatised text with different voices, sound effects etc - which is more fun, even though it’s advanced level. But you may not be into the New Testament from Bible.Is/Faith comes by hearing :slight_smile: Actually, Prof Alexander Arguelles’ sang their praises (http://www.foreignlanguageexpertise.com/museum2.html ). I make sure I check definitions with the English version, as LingQ hints can be misleading or lacking. If I weren’t trying to catch up on my Challenge listening stats (I joined French nearly a month in), I’d make a tonne more LingQs.

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The more you lingq the quicker you will have words that are defined when importing new material. The first few dozen articles you read, for example, will probably have hundreds of un-LingQ’d words, but if you plough through them, you will find that the 100th article you read will be there with most words already defined for your reading pleasure. Then soon enough, the words will start being put to ‘known’ and it will snowball extremely quickly.

You can’t do ‘too much’ in my opinion. People can say brain fatigue, or burn out or whatever, but if you want to keep going, keep going. Someone putting in 12 hours per day is always going to do better than someone putting in half hour.