May was a big month for Hacking Portuguese as we hit 10,000 monthly visitors for the first time. That’s not very many as the webby world goes, but it’s a long way from where we started in November 2011. What began as a blog for me to share my accomplishments and frustrations has become a clearinghouse for those who love the Portuguese language and want to speak it better.
Now that it’s the summer for us norteamericanos and I have some more time, there are some changes in store. First of all:
You can now get HP posts delivered straight to your news feed on Facebook. Click the Like button on the upper-right side of the sidebar, or just visit our Facebook page.
I already follow StreetSmart Brazil and Learn Brazilian Portuguese on FB, and I think it’s a marvelous way to engage with the language in small doses everyday, not to mention an un-intimidating way to do some writing (in the comments). This means you can now also ask a question or make a suggestion on FB instead of in the comments.
I’m also planning a refresh to the entire site, including:
- updated design
- less wordy posts and more advice for beginners
- a comprehensive video series that will teach Brazilian pronunciation
- interviews with Second Language Acquisition experts
- a new page for European Portuguese resources
Most importantly, I’ll be rewriting and reorganizing the most popular pages with a focus on how to use all these new resources together. The landscape of language learning on the web has changed quite a bit since 2011, and although I’ve made updates here and there to stay current, students need a better guide through the confusing clutter of sites that are out there. Here’s just some of the new resources that have appeared recently that I plan to review:
One of the things that happens when you learn Portuguese is that you fall down the deep rabbit hole of Brazilian culture. I’ve been indulging this side of myself (and practicing my Portuguese writing skills) with posts about Tropicália music and travel, but they don’t really belong here. All of these posts will be moved to a sister site, Brazil Made Me Smart, so that we can stay focused on the language.
Also going up on the new site will be a travelogue about my time in Rio, provisionally titled Deriva: Rio for musicians, introverts and flâneurs which will uncover a more intimate side of Rio. You will learn such things as how to ascend Corcovado on foot (both the sanctioned and unsanctioned routes), how to enjoy the views from the Morro da Urca without waiting in line for the tram, how to get lost in the alleys of O Centro, and how to stumble into impromptu rodas de capoeira in the becos of Lapa. We’ll talk about the neighborhoods that reward undirected exploration, the hidden stairways and museums of Santa Teresa, the winding mountain road that is a biker’s paradise, and the park full of creepy ruins in the forest that is hands down more exciting than the Jardim Botânico. We’ll consider the ethics of favela tourism, and whether it is really wise for a solo gringa to be doing all these things.
So, fique atenado (stay tuned)!