Welcome to this Glossika review. It is the main resources I am using for my 90 Day Mandarin Challenge.
I am constantly talking to people about Glossika and how effective it has been for me personally that I have decided to do a review to put all my thoughts down.
What is Glossika?
Sadly his old youtube channel got taken down by youtube despite it being a gold mine of information for language learners. On that channel he documented his challenges and showed some of his methods to do multiple languages at one time.
To say I was impressed is an understatement. Later he came out with Glossika GMS and GSR. This allowed normal people like ourselves to use his method to supercharge our language learning.
To answer what is Glossika. You can see Mikes own description of the method here.
But in my own words it is a mass sentence method allowing us to be exposed to massive amounts of new words in context every day.
Really the way we get better is exposure to the language, we then make little discoveries and ‘aha’ moments as we connect the dots in daily life.
In my opinion Glossika speeds up this process. Instead of naturally this happening over months or years in a random way the Glossika method actually exposes you to 1000 sentences per book.
It speeds up this natural process of exposure and allows our ears and our ‘mouths’ to become accustomed to the language.
Mouths? Yes the muscle memory of saying the words is also employed to push this exposure from short to longterm memory in a very natural way.
We can now hear the words, recognize patterns and naturally pick up the rhythm of the language.
The aim of each Fluency course 1-3 is to take the learner gradually from A1 to B2 Level (CEFR).
Again to get the details you see the full explanation here on the Glossika site.
Who Should Use it?
First I would like to let Mike himself introduce Glossika and language learning from zero in this video.
Personally I believe Glossika is perfect for those who already have an exposure to a language.
Even if you are already quite accomplished in the language using Glossika can hep with pronunciation, rhythm and flow of speaking sentences rather than singular words.
It is also great listening practice as the speed of the recordings is that of a native speaker.
This I see as a massive plus point to the recordings as I think we need to get used to real life speed as soon as possible.
Perfecting understanding using recordings in slow motion only serves to create more language shock when speaking to native speakers in real life.
But this does also mean that if you are a beginner, a true beginner with no experience of your chosen language then Glossika should not be your first tool or at least not your only tool.
How To Use It?
Glossika has two official methods, GMS (Glossika Mass Sentence) and GSR (Glossika Spaced Repetition).
You can use one or both depending upon your available time and learning style.
Though I have enough time for GMS, I never use it I only ever use GSR. It works as follows.
GSR- Glossika Spaced Repetition
20 minutes per day, 3 months per book
- Listen.Use the MP3 files from the folder ‘GLOSSIKA-XX-GSR’. Keep going and don’t worry if you miss something on the first day, you will hear each sentence more than a dozen times over the next 5 days.
GMS – Glossika Mass Sentence
1-2 hours per day, 1 month per book
Step 0 is optional and good for students with very little or no experience in the target language. We’ve also included a handy chart for you to keep track of Steps 1-4 listed below.
- Prepare. (GMS-A)Follow the text as you listen to the GMS-A files (in ‘GLOSSIKA-XX-GMS-A’). Listen to as many sentences as you can, and keep going even when you miss a sentence or two. Try to focus on the sounds and matching them to the text.
- Listen. (GMS-A)Try to repeat the target sentence with the speaker the second time you hear it.
- Write. (GMS-C)Write down the sentences as quickly as you can, but hit pause when you need to. Check your answers against the text.
- Record. (GMS-C)Listen to each sentence and record it yourself. Record from what you hear, not from reading the text. You can use your mobile phone or computer to do the recording. Play it back, and try to find the differences between the original and your recording.
- Interpret. (GMS-B)Try to recall the target sentence in the gap after you hear it in English. Try to say it out loud, and pause if necessary.
As you can see GMS is a lot more involved and I found myself spending too much time preparing rather than listening and speaking.
So early on I changed to the GSR method and simply repeat multiple days rather than doing just 20 mins.
What Do You Get?
You get an Ebook and MP3 files for both GMS and GSR (They are structured differently) with each purchase.
If you like the feel of a real book in your hand or think you will be using the GMS method then getting a printed book is helpful.
If you prefer to use the GSR method then there is no need for the printed book as you already have the Ebook as a reference.
If you are buying for the first time then I would suggest only to get the Ebook and MP3 package to see how you get on with the method as this is the cheapest option.
Each book consists of 1000 sentences, so the Fluency 1-3 package (3 books) aims to get you fluent in 3000 sentences over the course of 10 months if following GSR, far quicker if using GMS.
Personally I have very little negative to say about Glossika. It is by far the most important tool I use.
But as you can read here I used Pimsleur, Assimil and lots of public humiliation before starting Glossika.
So I had a foundation, it wasn’t much like I knew the numbers, Hello, Goodbye, I want, I don’t want and that is about it.
This very thin foundation was enough to allow me to start Glossika.
Not because I had lots of vocab but mostly because the sound of the language was familiar to me despite not being able to understand it.
So yes if you are a true beginner it might be a bit of a shock beginning Glossika, but don’t be too daunted by it. Stick with it and you will be fine.
Also some of the sentences are a little strange and I would never use them, this is mentioned on line sometimes by other Glossika users
But honestly I think this is no big deal as we are not aiming to be a parrot.
These sentences are a means to an end to widen what we know and what is usable for us through mass input.
To give us big exposure to the language from many different angles.
There are so many but one of the biggest things for me is that you get mass exposure at native speaker speed.
People might see this as a negative but I believe it is a false confidence practicing at half speed for any longer than absolutely necessary.
Also there is no need to remember word lists. Simply listen and speak out the sentences and you will find them all starting to stick and will be able to recall whole sentences very easily.
This is very refreshing as I hate remembering vocabulary.
There are so many more but I think best discovered as you use the method and to be honest the price of the base Ebook and MP3 is so reasonable it’s worth just diving in.
What Languages Are Offered?
This is something you don’t have to worry about with Glossika. They have languages you have never heard of and tribal languages not generally be taught anywhere.
More and more are being added every month. You can see what is available now here.
Another great idea from Glossika is triangulation. This means if you are learning several languages you can learn a 3rd language through your 2nd language and in the process improve both. Just contact Glossika to inquire about this.
Will It Help You Become Fluent?
Yes it absolutely will. But it is a tool and it should be used as such. It is not magic.
You will need to put a lot of effort in.
You will need to seek out language partners to practice with.
You will need to practice everyday.
You will need to commit to learning until…..you get the results you want.
Like anything in life you get out what you put in.
When I found Glossika I made more progress than with other methods I have tried.
It is the main resource for my 90 Day Mandarin Challenge and a real confidence booster in the way understanding intuitively develops through the mass listening.
I think if you are passionate about learning languages and are very focused on making real progress then you will love Glossika.
It is intense. But intense is what we need to breakdown barriers and make progress.
If you are more of a hobbyist in your language learning then get ready!, Start with the GSR and hang on tight.
Lastly Glossika gives us a chance to learn some very exotic languages that just are not easily available elsewhere.
So it gets a big thumbs up from me.