Learning German, 2 hours a day?

I’ve wanted to learn German for a while. I attempted to learn it months ago but I gave up because I was too impatient and didn’t see results instantly… so I quit. I now know that patience with language learning is extremely important! I have been actively learning German for the past 7 weeks, I’ve done the first 30 Assimil lessons and a bit of extra listening and reading. Some days I do not do any German, some days (because of school) I spent a couple of hours using Assimil and using Deutsche Welle - Warum Nicht . I can spend at least 2/3+ hours a day on learning German.
I’m going to be in Düsseldorf for 7 days in 5 weeks time - which is quite exciting and motivating!

At the moment, my vocabulary is quite small. I know basic adjectives, adverbs, 60/70 verbs etc… I am starting to understand bits and pieces of German grammar but I’m hoping that by listening and reading I will start to notice the patterns in the language. After I’ve finished writing this post, I’ll probably spend the next couple reading and listening here on LingQ.

I do have a couple of questions about LingQ:
When I am selecting the lessons to go through here on LingQ, what % of the words should be known to me? Sometimes, I choose texts which have 50-60% unknown words because I find them more interesting. I’m starting to wonder if this % is too high and I should compromise between % of unknown words and how interested I am in the content.
Also, should I solely listen and read for the whole 2-3 hours? Would it be better to complete a lesson of Assimil a day and then maybe just supplement it with listening and reading?
Is there ever so much as too much LingQing? So far today, I’ve created 82 LingQ’s in about 30 minutes. At the end of the day it’ll probably almost 200.
Is it possible with 2-3+ hours a day of learning German, that achieving I’ll be able to achieve a B1 level in 6 months?

My own comments:

Q - "When I am selecting the lessons to go through here on LingQ, what % of the words should be known to me? "

Below an advanced (C1) level, you are going to be, for the most part, at least 20-30% unknown - for most lessons that are “interesting”. This % will be even higher when you are at A2/B1 level etc.

There’s a difference between when you are reading at less than 80% known, 80-95% known, and 95%+. You can get to around 80% known pretty easily by grinding through “easy” lessons and just by looking up and lingqing all of the unknown words you first encounter in more interesting lessons. This will get you about 2-5,000 words, most of which will be the high frequency words (80% of the frequency of words within any language).

But then a lot of language learning is really all about tackling the 5,000-30,000 known words step. For most of this journey you will be somewhere between 80-95% unknown.

For example, if you were to just import Oprah Winfrey chat show transcripts to lingq you will find the first 50 episodes can quickly take you to 80-85% known. Another 100-150 episodes will take you to about 85-90% (consistently). Then another 250+ episodes are required to take you to 95%+ (consistently). Such that each gain requires a (relatively) exponential increase in volume of input.

You will also find that the first step (the first 50 episodes) are no fun, and it is just a lot easier to use simpler, shorter material (or at least “mix” these in). Further, the second step (episodes 50-200) is not always a lot of fun either (even, if you really like Oprah). Even at 15% unknown, it is a real slog to listen and read, no matter how you go about it.

But, this is where the real magic of interesting transcribed audio comes in - being able to listen and read to the same material - it helps a lot to get through the process, I think. The brain seems to latch onto and focus on different things (between listening and reading), plugging gaps, and reinforcing words. You just have to stay with it. Choosing material that you are really interested in helps a lot to keep you with the journey.

Q - " should I solely listen and read for the whole 2-3 hours?"

Do what you like to do - but listening and reading will give you highest ROI, imo.

Q - “Is there ever so much as too much LingQing?”

I don’t think so. However, your long term memory will only filter at around 5-10 words a day. And often even less than this. But forgetting and relearning is part of the natural process so going above this level is never really a problem, and the way to go , imo.

Q - “Is it possible with 2-3+ hours a day of learning German, that achieving I’ll be able to achieve a B1 level in 6 months?”

This is do-able no matter what the language.

Woah, thanks for the detailed reply - I really appreciate it! Would you perhaps recommend that I choose lessons which are around the 20-40% unknown word range rather than 50-60%, so I can truly nail the basic vocabulary? I might decide to alternative between easier and more complex material. The reason why I’m choosing lessons with a high % of unknown words is because I feel like the more words I get familiar with earlier on, the easier it will be to remember them in the future. Although, I do count words that I’ve already LingQed as unknown, but the amount of blue words is still around 40%.

I do hope I can achieve a B1 level in 6 months. Right now, I’m probably at an A1 level, or very near… I would like to get to an A2 level by late October, then A2 → B1 by January/February time. However, I understand that life might get in the way and I might not be able to study so much. I’m looking forward to the days, when I can finally understand the gist of German radio/TV and news articles!