Sprint Five – Complete

This sprint was probably the most boring as most of it involved mass data entry in Anki. My objective for this sprint was to have up to 1000 flash cards fully loaded with sound, Arabic text, sound clip, an image and a personal connection to remember the card. I managed to get just over 900 as some cards had bad sound clips. Taking this mass amount of data was a painful experience but now I have all these cards I can work on memorising them.
The main challenge of this sprint was entering all the data on my laptop whilst looking after my daughter who constantly wants to play with the laptop and my son who needs lots of food and cuddles.

906 cards! After creating all the cards I had to review them. This meant reviewing over a 100 cards a day.


I planned to go through all the Kallimni audio files and filter out the most useful ones. After going through them I found they are all useful. So I am going to use them all for immersion.

I managed to review all 100 cards every day. I believe this is helping alot as alot of words are sticking in my memory.
Although having these cards are very useful I should point out that this isn’t the main priority over all. I still want to focus on speaking but for the meam time I need to build up my Anki cards list. Once I have done it I can go back to focusing on speaking whilst practicing with my amazing cards.


Fluent Forever – how to learn any language fast and never forget by Gabriel Wyner – My thoughts


I originally pre ordered this book as it looked interesting. Once it came out I really didn’t have the time to read it but made the time.

I can say that this is a fantastic book written by someone who has learnt languages successfully. His book and methods are very similar to Benny Lewis. Both books are great I recommend buying both.

The book has high emphasis on using a flash card system such as Anki. The book offers a great amount of detail into how you can learn a language using his system learning high frequency words, grammar and much more. The author also has a great website providing even more detail. The book can be bought from amazon for a very cheap price,  it’s definitely worth it.

Sprint five

Jerash in Jordan

13th until 27th of October

Ok, the baby has been born, my paternity is over and it’s time to go to work and crack on with my Arabic studies.
So far I have over 500 flash cards on Anki and have been practicing for over thirty minutes a day. Using methods from the “Fluent Forever” book I can now breeze through many cards without problems remembering the meanings of a word.
As my wife and I are still getting settled into a routine of having two babies this sprint will be focused around increasing my flash card count, the more the better! I don’t think I’m going to get any time to practice speaking as my routine at the moment is go to work then come home, feed the kids then go to sleep. However, any progress is good progress!

My tasks for this sprint are:

1. Kallimni recordings – go through all the recordings from the book and pick out the most useful by chapter. I will use this for daily immersion in my car to and from work and any where in between. The recordings are very good and have lots of great vocabulary and conversations broken down.

2. Anki cards – I am aiming to reach a total of 1000 cards fully loaded with sound, images and personal connection. The cards will use words from the high frequency list dictionary. I didn’t want to spend a fortune on this book and found a free one on Memrise!

3. Anki reviewing – I’m aiming to carry on with thirty minutes of reviewing every day.

4. Kallimni cards – as I mentioned previously I have over 100 cards for this book. But as they are in the Egyptian dialect I can’t find single recordings on Forvo. I’m going to find someone who will kindly record all these words…for a price 🙂 Once I have the recordings I can make flash cards for each word and add them to Anki.

For my high frequency words list I will be using the words from the high frequency list on Memrise. This is using the book “a frequency dictionary of Arabic. I didn’t want to pay the price for the book so I just take the words from memrise and add them to anki. I used my software development skills to loop through the lists and add them to files, all for free! I’ll add the files and script sometime.

Sprint four – Complete

I have over 500 cards loaded with sound, an image, text and a personal connection

This sprint was very loose time scale wise as my wife was due to go into labour at any moment.
I managed to create over 500 Anki flash cards fully loaded with sound, text, an image and a personal connection.
As the “Fluent Forever” book mentions it’s best to add these as it will make words stick in your brain. I think the technical term is Mnemonics.
I initially created the cards without the personal connection and found it difficult to memorise words. I was reviewing them over and over with little sticking in my memory. One morning I thought I’ll give it a shot and noticed I can remember alot using simple personal connections to a word or something funny. Benny Lewis has a great example of this with his Garfield card in French and Spanish word for beach.
It sounds like a lot of work but it really isn’t and is worth it in the long run.

I have been reviewing over 100 cards a day in Anki and find that this is helping me immensely.

I haven’t done much immersion as creating the cards has been taking up alot of my time. However, I have copies of the dubbed Arabic series Fatima ready for when I get the time to watch it.

Overall it has been an ok sprint considering all the new changes going on in my life.