About me

Seja bem-vindo! Eu sou Lauren, dona de Hacking Portuguese. I’m a norteamericana living in Califórnia, where I work as an environmental consultant. I began studying Portuguese in January 2010.

I’m slowly coming to terms with the realization that I might be an adult-onset linguaphile. I studied French for five years in school, and while I was a good student, I never got excited enough about French to continue speaking it as an adult. In 2009, I met Brazilian Portuguese and everything was different. I loved the sound of the language, and I had external reasons for wanting to learn it (more on that later).

This led to a realization: you don’t choose the language, the language chooses you.

Using the tools and resources on this site, I ended up speaking Portuguese much better after just two years that I ever spoke French after five years. The speed of my progress got me thinking about how languages are taught and how motivated students might go about accelerating their learning.

I saw that the internet was creating innovative new resources for language learning – tools like Linguee, Forvo, Lingro, Skype, LiveMocha, Corpus do Português, Google Translate, language blogs, podcasts, and youtube videos, plus traditional media easily available through Amazon. At the same time, the internet makes it harder to find these great resources by introducing an overwhelming amount of throwaway content related to language learning. I wanted to share what had worked for me and help people sort through this mess, while also sharing some ideas on how language hacking techniques might be applied to Portuguese specifically.

Besides languages, I enjoy making music. I don’t think this is a coincidence – the parallels between music study and language study are quite striking. In 2007 I became interested in bluegrass and American roots music and began studying the mandolin. That led me, at the 2009 Mandolin Symposium, to take some classes on Brazilian choro music from a couple of visiting Brazilian mandolinists. I completely fell in love with choro and began studying it seriously, which was the spark that got me started learning Portuguese.

At first it was just a few words out of curiosity, but before long I was hooked. I think it was the sound of the language that drew me in; then, as the sounds became less exotic, it was the excitement of being able to read, write and converse more and more that became addictive. What keeps me going now is the thrill of being conversant in a language that just three years ago was completely unintelligible to me, and having a whole new cultural world to explore that is suddenly accessible.

In June 2011 I visited Brazil for the first time in order to practice my Portuguese, study choro with some local bandolinistas, and explore the culture. I spent a month in Rio, staying at a beautiful hostel in Santa Teresa and going out to Lapa every night to hear live music – samba, choro, and forró. I took a cooking class in Copacabana where I learned to make feijoada completa, played with local musicians at the Sunday Choro na Feira choro jam, took a bandolim lesson with local player Luis Barcelos (entirely in Portuguese since he speaks no English, yikes!), biked around the lagoa, hiked to the top of Corcovado, visited Rocinha, spent long afternoons riding the bonde, watched the sunset from Ponto do Arpoador, got lost in o Centro, ordered suco de abacaxi com hortelã at every possible opportunity, and ate way too many salgadinhos. I tried to see as many neighborhoods in Zona Sul as possible. I also visited the colonial town of Paraty, where I did an incredible 3-day sea kayaking trip to the Saco do Mamanguá, a place that is practically a case study for the kind of socioenvironmental challenges I’m interested in.

I came back from Rio with the realization that I seriously needed to work on my listening comprehension, because people speak very fast and the carioca accent is tough to understand. I had no trouble asking questions and expressing my needs, but understanding the response from Brazilians was a whole other story. So lately I have been focusing on active listening practice.

I was incredibly lucky in that around the time I was becoming conversant in Portuguese, my company began doing environmental investigations in Brazil. My second trip to Brazil was a month-long cleanup project at a chemical plant near Salvador. On the weekends I read Jorge Amado on the beach at Itapuã, visited the Pelourinho, and ate moqueca, acarajé and vatapá at every opportunity. During the week I had the great privilege to work with a fantastic team of Brazilians at the plant and improve my language skills.

Right now I’m studying environmental management at the graduate level. I’m interested in ways that people can live more sustainably off of the land, striking a balance between unchecked development and hands-off preservation, and it happens that right now Brazil is a focal point for many of these issues. I’m especially interested in the link between climate change and forests, and I’ve been closely watching the progress of the Brazilian government in combating deforestation in Amazônia and the Mata Atlântica – it’s been a great way to study Portuguese and pursue my other interests at the same time. I eagerly followed Marina Silva’s 2010 presidential campaign, using her tv programs as listening practice. Recently, I’ve been following the debate over changes in the Código Florestal, and the discussions about how programs like REDD can be implemented in Brazil.

I’ve also made some recent forays into other languages – Welsh, German and Bulgarian. But I feel like when it comes to languages, serial monogamy is the rule, and I still want to go farther with Portuguese.

Anyway – For those who want to accelerate their learning even a little bit, I hope that Hacking Portuguese can provide a roadmap to reach your goals speaking this bela língua.

– Lauren


84 Responses to About me

  1. Raphael de Souza Camisão says:

    Muito bom que você esteja se interessando tanto assim por essa belíssima língua :) Continue o ótimo trabalho!

    • Lauren says:

      Obrigada Raphael pelo elogio, fico feliz que você gostou!

      • Lauren, acabei vc com um post analisando a Baby do Caetano cantada pela Gal. Você é uma “mina foda”, como estamos dizendo aqui no Brasil nesses tempos. Se me permite uma pequenininha correção… ” Fico feliz que você tenha gostado”, sounds better. Beijinhos !!!!

  2. David says:

    Thanks so much for making this site! It is extremely helpful! Muito obrigado!

  3. Hi Lauren,

    thank you so much for recommending our services.

    We are glad to hear Linguee has helped you learn Portuguese!

    Desejamos-lhe muito sucesso!

    Best Regards from our entire team!

    PS. We would like to be able to inform you about our news. If you are interested, please send us your email contact to: erica@linguee.com.br .

    • Lauren says:

      Muito obrigada pelo comentário Erica, you have all done a tremendous job making Linguee both useful and a pleasure to use. It’s truly one of the best resources for language learners on the web.

  4. Antonio says:

    Great site! You are very well organized. A good example to be followed. Thanks for the tips. I didn´t know about Anki. looks great! For those who have a hard time remembering words, like me!

    For typing I used the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator. Basically you create your own keyboad. The trick is that you would create it based on your normal layout, English, Spanish, etc. It was little bit hard to set up, but it works great afterwards. For instance, I set up ã as alt gr a, õ as alt gr o, ç as alt gr c, Ã alt gr+shift a, etc. So it’s very handy and natural. (Typing master is also a great tool for learning to type fast).

    There is also a tool to create audio-text syncronization, with potential for language learning. http://www.dinglabs.com/

    I created a sample for A Menina do Mar, with files from the web, https://sites.google.com/site/lookingforgoodthings/_/rsrc/1312832766228/01_A_Menina-w.jpg?height=248&width=320

    It’s open from creation, for those with time and will.

  5. Alessandro says:

    Olá, Lauren
    Estava pesquisando sobre o Anki e encontrei seu site. Sou brasileiro (moro em São Paulo) e também me interesso por idiomas (já me viro bem em inglês e agora estou me atrevendo a aprender francês por conta própria).
    Na verdade, estou escrevendo apenas para te parabenizar pela sua excelente fluência em português (aliás, você escreve melhor do que a imensa maioria das pessoas que eu conheço) e dizer que se você precisar de alguma ajuda ou dica, pode contar comigo (se bem que eu acho isso pouco provável, já que você escreve tão bem).

    • Lauren says:

      Olá Alessandro, mais uma evidência que os brasileiros são as pessoas mais simpáticas do mundo! Um monte de agradecimentos pelas palavras muito encorajadores. Era uma vez que eu conseguia falar o francês muito bem, mas já esqueci muito. Boa sorte em sua viagem pra aprender francês e obrigada por dar uma pula aqui.

  6. Laurena says:

    Hi Lauren (we have almost the same name :)…anyway I just found your site and I really liked your posts, it seems like you put a lot of work into this. I created a similar website for teaching Portuguese: Portugueseblog.org, maybe we could collaborate somehow. Email me if you are interested. Take care!

    • Lauren says:

      Hi Laurena, I’m already a fan of your blog and facebook posts. Your thematic lists of vocabulary are great and I would definitely recommend that portuguese learners go take a look at portugueseblog.org. And yes, I would love to collaborate – any thoughts on what that would look like?

  7. James Hall says:

    Hi Lauren,

    We of course *adoramos that you included Semantica on your list! We noticed that you’ve also made an Amazon list also and, we are in the Amazon store too now >> and the url is:


    Keep blogging!

    • Lauren says:

      Hey Jim, thanks for stopping by! Semántica is a fun and wonderful way to learn carioca Portuguese and I am eagerly awaiting the third installment of the videos. In the meantime, I’ve added Level 1 to my Amazon store so that my readers can purchase it there if they choose.

  8. Hi Lauren,

    I would appreciate it if you could recommend my website to your readers.


    Thanks and regards,

  9. Melanie says:

    Hey Lauren,
    Great site! I feel like you’re my twin – I started studying Portuguese about 2 and a half years ago (at 42 yrs old!) and nearly fluent now. I just visited Brasil for the first time and it was amazing – I didn’t speak English at all and felt great! I’m a singer/songwriter and perform Brazilian jazz and Portuguese Fado – I also write my own songs in Portuguese. Now I’m getting certified to teach ESL and want to teach English to Portuguese speakers. How cool to find your site here today! Abraço!

    • Lauren says:

      Prazer Melanie! I enjoyed watching your fado videos, you have a gorgeous voice and bring out the sounds of the language very beautifully. I play bandolim and I know a great Brazilian traditional/jazz guitarist here in LA named Fabio Nascimento who often gigs with vocalists, so let me know if you’re ever in town. Good luck with the ESL classes – I’ve thought about that too – do you think you will go to Brazil/Portugal or teach in the US?

      um abraço grande,

  10. T. Hill says:

    I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts. I have also found myself overwhelmed trying to find quality material and organizing study rituals.

  11. Ori says:

    Hi Lauren,

    I cannot even tell you how excited I am to discover your INCREDIBLE website. You have clearly invested so much thought and heart into!!

    I just wanted to sincerely thank you for all the time you have taken to put together this wonderful website and share your valuable journey with others. Like you, I have recently become obsessed with Portuguese/Brazilian culture even though I’ve never been there nor spoke the language.

    I am officially embarking on my language learning adventure today, August 11, and I will use your site as a resource along the way. Will definitely share my experiences/questions with you as I move forward.

    Thank you so much once again.



    • Lauren says:

      Olá Ori! Thank you so much for your wonderful comments about HP, it’s incredibly gratifying to share my passion for Portuguese and to hear from others with that same passion. One thing that’s missing from this site is more of a beginners perspective, so as you go along, I’d love to hear about your progress and what you are finding useful. And I definitely encourage you to find a Portuguese-speaking friend/tutor/activity group if you don’t already have one – it will make your progress so much faster if you are using the language as you learn it. Aproveite!


  12. Ori says:

    Olá Lauren!

    Muito obrigado pela sua resposta! I just downloaded yesterday all the Pimsleur audio lessons and have already listened to the first 3 and love them! I also got the Tá Falado grammar podcasts and signed up for LiveMocha . I’m also considering paying for the PortuguesePod101.com website today since they are running a 30% discount. Any thoughts on that? Do you think it’s worth it?

    My best friend is Brazilian and he said he’ll totally help me practice so I’m excited about that. Also – I’m considering signing up for a weekly course in September at a local community college.

    Anyways, I know I sound crazy but would love to hear if you have any other recommendations. Like you, I am very excited/obsessed/motivated so I want to try to mix as many methods as I can because I am totally committed and wanting a good learning plan. Please let me know if you think this is a good approach or if you would change anything.



  13. Fabio says:

    Dear Lauren,
    I would like to congratulate you for the initiative and for nice work. I would like to take this opportunity and put me available to help foreigners (english speakers) to learning the Portuguese language. In return, I would exercise the English language with them.

    PS.: Can contact (fpalves@outlook.com)

  14. Hi laurena
    I would like to say “Parabens” for your Blog. He look great, original and he well organized. Today you earn one new fan ;-)

    I am also a creator of website (It is not my first profession, I am mechanical engineer, during the week)


    Claude Martinet

  15. Hello Lauren. Wow what an amazing website, i was just looking for english natives to have some conversation in english to practise it thru the Skype then i found HP and i’ve got so amazed to your story that i couldn’t stop reading, good job.
    I’m 20, from Rio de Janeiro, i’m studying english years by myself, guess my written english is alright, isn’t it? Imao. now my objective is to get fluency in (that’s the reason i was looking for english natives early to have conversation thru Skype).
    That’s it, stoped by just to congratulate you for your great job, you’re so like me in some ways, love english and the North American people. Hope you enjoy our Country and hopefully i’m gonna read more about your “adventure” all over Brazil.
    If you or any other english native want to practise Portuguese conver sation just hit me up on my Facebook page (Rinaldo Aleixo) i’d be so glad to help you out by the way it’s gonna be good for me too to practice my spoken english.

    Good night everyone. Take care Lauren!

    • Lauren says:

      Hey Rinaldo, thank you so much for writing! I always love hearing from Brazilians who stumble onto this site, and I have a special place in my heart for cariocas. Your written English is great, especially for having studied it on your own.

      If you’re looking for English speakers to Skype with, I suggest you join the StreetSmart Brazil group and the Learn Brazilian Portuguese group on Facebook and then introduce yourself to folks over there. I’ve found that the “language exchange” thing works best with two people of roughly similar abilities in their target languages, so maybe you can find someone who’s been studying Portuguese for a few years. I’ll friend you too and hopefully we can Skype sometime.


  16. Ana Wal says:

    I’ve only made a short visit here today, yet have found many useful cues. Look forward to returning soon.
    Many thanks ,


  17. Luana says:

    Lauren, você é demais! Agora você vai falar português com o sotaque baiano!

  18. Oi, Lauren!
    Obrigada por adicionar a Brazil Ahead em sua lista de escolas em NYC.
    Temos muitos alunos que, assim como voce, se tornaram fluentes no Portugues e ate’ fazem videos para mostrar o quanto aprenderam :)
    Gostariamos de oferecer 10% de desconto para quem nos contatar atraves do seu blog, o que voce acha?
    Continue esse trabalho maravilhoso! Seu blog eh nota 10!

    • Lauren says:

      Oi Cris, obrigada pelas suas amáveis palavras, é muito encorajador receber feedback de educadores como você. Eu acho o descontinho uma ideia maravilhosa, e vou fazer um blog post e uma anotação naquela página pra informar meus leitores do acordo. Destaco a viagem “Rio Immersion” também, que legal. Obrigada e boas aulas!

  19. Josh says:

    Hey Lauren,

    I think its incredible what you’ve assembled here. Your site is a huge resource to anyone learning Portuguese, and I’m definitely going to recommend it on my site BrazilianGringo.com

    Incidentally, I’m launching the site soon and I’d love to get a quick quote from you.

    I couldn’t find a contact form on your site, so if you could get in touch with me that would be otimo.


  20. Alyssa says:

    Hi Lauren!
    I’m a typical broke college student and don’t really have the funds to buy helpful programs. I did, however, learn about a website called Duolingo and have been using it for a few weeks. Are you familiar with this website? What are your opinions? Is there any other way I could receive free help?

    Also, your blog is amazing and extremely informative, especially for a beginner like me. Keep up the good work!

    Thank you,

  21. Hello
    I would like to discuss a possible partnership with your website but I didn’t find a contact form. Could you contact me at affiliate@languagecoursecentre.com ?
    Very nice blog

    Gabrielle Lopes

  22. caterina says:

    Any recommendations for learning “European” (Portugal) Portuguese? In aprticular in terms of grammar books? I’m moving there and speak fluent Italian and French and some Spanish, but want to understand Portuguese grammar (from Portugal). I don’t know if there is that much difference between the language from the two countries, but I only find information on Brazilian portuguese…..

    • john says:

      I’m interested in EU Portuguese as well. It’s difficult to find good resources. This sites discusses Pimsleur (which has 10 units for European vs. 90 for Brazilian). Any help on this would be appreciated! Thanks.

      • Lauren says:

        Hi John – I didn’t know that Pimsleur’s European Portuguese only has 10 lessons! That’s really too bad. Have you looked into the Michel Thomas courses? They don’t say they’re explicitly for EP but the teacher speaks in European dialect. The format is very similar to Pimsleur, though I’m not sure how advanced it gets. There is a beginner and an advanced version, though the advanced version is not reviewed well.

        I’ve been getting a lot of requests for EP material, and since I learned the Brazilian dialect I don’t know where to point people (other than books like Ponto de Encontro). If you find anything good, let me know and I’ll start a page for EP.

      • Lauren says:

        Check this site out too – I just discovered it today…audio clips and lessons in European dialect:

  23. Ernei Ribeiro says:

    Muito bom seu site. A lista dos verbos mais frequentes é muito útil.
    Admiro muito seu interesse pelo Português Brasileiro.
    Tenho vontade de propagar mais o conhecimento do Português Brasileiro aqui no Japão.

    • Lauren says:

      Oi Ernei, obrigada pelo seu comentário. Acho maravilhoso que os vínculos entre o Brasil e o Japão continuam fortes. É o centenário do início da emigração grande, não é? Tem muitos brasileiros morando no Japão?

      • Ernei Ribeiro says:

        Olá Lauren,
        Na verdade, creio que a expressão “imigração” é mais apropriada.
        O centenário da imigração foi em 2008. Os brasileiros são o terceiro maior grupo de estrangeiros no Japão, atrás apenas de chineses e coreanos. Porém, a maioria deles são trabalhadores desqualificados, que foram empregados por empresas apenas por serem descendentes de japoneses. Dessa maneira, os brasileiros estudantes ou que trabalham na área educacional/cultural são poucos. Por isso, os japoneses continuam sabendo pouco sobre o Brasil e o português brasileiro.

        • Lauren says:

          É fascinante, Ernei, obrigada. Não sabia que os brasileiros de ascendência japonesa são o terceiro maior grupo de extrangeiros no Japão. Desejo-lhe sorte em ajudar a espalhar o conhecimento do português aí.

  24. Filip says:

    Hi Lauren,

    I’ve decided to learn Brazilian Portuguese and your site is very helpful, thank you so much for taking your time to provide us with so much good and interesting information. I’m an absolute beginner so I will be listening to the Pimsleur language program while I’m at work, but I’m looking for a good textbook.

    I was looking through your recommendations of textbooks but I couldn’t find a book for an absolute beginner. Do you have any book recommendations for someone that is an absolute beginner?

    Manuel Cooks’ “Teach Yourself Portuguese” has received good reviews from Amazon users. Is it a book you would recommend for a beginner?

    Best Regards,

    • Lauren says:

      Oi Filip,

      Thanks for your nice comment! I do think Teach Yourself will be a good supplement to the Pimsleur course. But! Get the Portuguese version by Sue Tyson-Ward instead. It is specifically for the Brazilian dialect. Manuela Cook’s version attempts to teach both dialects, which is confusing.


  25. Parabéns, seu português é lindo, sua iniciativa é magnifica!
    Gostei muito do seu blog. Ainda não falo inglês, mas entendo bem algumas coisas, e estou gostando de ler em inglês, como se falar o português, rs
    Se precisar de alguma coisa, qualquer coisa, pode me contatar, estarei ao seu dispor naquilo que puder e souber, e se eu não souber de alguma coisa, esteja certa de que procurarei aprender para poder lhe ajudar. Fico feliz em saber que gosta do Brasil e da nossa cultura, saiba que a recíproca é verdadeira. Beijos

  26. Great to come across your website, Lauren :) Muito bom trabalho!

    I added Hacking Portuguese to Free Language’s Free and Open Language Learning Database:


    Please keep up the great work, and let me know if there is anything more I can do to get the word out there to Portuguese learners about Hacking Portuguese.


    • Lauren says:

      Hi Chapman, thanks very much for the writeup. And great website by the way! I’ll point my readers to Free Language as well. I learned about a few new things like Babbel that I’d like to take a closer look at.

      um abraço,

      • Cool! Glad I could actually point you to something new :)

        Babbel is not free – it used to be but they changed their Freemium model and now you have to pay to play. That said, it is quite good, perhaps more for so for beginners given their excellent multimedia flashcard material.

        Busuu is free to get started with, and has a very vibrant community which is great for finding people to practice with and generally engaging in the social learning style.

        I’ll let you know if anything new pops up on my radar for Portuguese.


  27. Patricia Heyworth says:

    Hi Lauren,

    You website is a wonderful resource and thanks for sharing your knowledge and insight into learning Portuguese. I did a cultural exchange over 10 years ago in Brazil and stayed with the kindest, most wonderful Brazilian family who I am still in contact with now. I wish to return to Brazil and have a proper conversation with my family there but my portuguese is pretty bad now. I can read pretty well and understand the jist of most conversations- it’s expressing myself clearly that I struggle with. I am having problems getting a private tutor where I live (the north of England). I have purchased Ponto de Encontro but it has so many exercises with a partners that I find it frustrating! You mention ‘Portugues Via Brasil’ and I am wondering if that is more suited to self study? I would be very, very grateful for any of your advice.

    Kind Regards,

    Patricia Heyworth

    • Lauren says:

      Thanks for your comment Patricia. I am always surprised at how fast the language comes back after I go a few weeks or even months without speaking it, when I go to Brazil and am immersed in it suddenly. The adjustment happens very quickly. Hopefully it will be the same for you.

      I agree that Ponto de Encontro is not the best for self-study exercises. Portugues via Brasil is a more advanced text than PdE and starts out at a fairly high level. I would recommend Muito Prazer if you want a textbook that has more self-study exercises, but it’s not exactly cheap.

      If your main issue is speaking, the best thing is probably to look for a tutor to do Skype lessons with. The only tutor I know of is Fernando Nonohay in London, but maybe he will teach via Skype?

      In any case, I wish you a great time planning your return trip to Brazil!

    • Lauren says:

      Actually Patricia, let me amend my previous comment and suggest not Muito Prazer but either Falar, Ler, Escrever or Bem Vindo. These are older books but very good with WAY more self-study exercises than either PdE or MP. I used them quite a bit a few years ago. Hopefully being older, they are also cheaper.

  28. Ygor says:

    Boa noite/ Bom dia ( o q é q for ai no momento kkkk)
    Como brasileiro me sinto honrado em ter pessoas q querem aprender o nosso idioma, vc tem uma fluência enorme e tenho q te parabenizar pelo blog.

    Moro em bh (capital de minas gerais) e achei seu blog por engano mas me encantei kkk é estranho a principio ver alguem interessado em aprender o q pra vc é natural, mas percebi que nem eu sei tanto de português assim kkkk, continue com o trabalho bem feito q vc tem, e me desculpe o “mineires” e “internetes” kkkk

  29. James says:

    Hi Lauren,

    I *just noticed* that you are the author of this site while i was noticing some comments from folks seeking Semantica coupons etc. If this site is still active I would like to offer your followers some discounts. Also, if you are still doing reviews, I will set you up with an account so you can review the latest content we have. A lot has changed. Come to Rio and do you water work! The Bahia (and oh yes – the OCEAN) here desperately need some more engineers and scientists to work on rehab projects. ~James

  30. Brookee:) says:

    Oi Lauren:)
    Parabens e obrigada por seu site maravilhoso! O meu nome e Brooke e eu sou uma Norteamericana com interesses muito semelhantes aos seus, especialmente a lingua portugues e a protecao do meio ambiente. Eu estou muito feliz por ter encontrada seu site e eu sei que vai me ajudar um monte:) Alem do Portugues, eu estou interessada em trabalhar em direcao numa carreira de Protecao e educacao do preservacao Ambiental. A coisa e que, eu falto direcao e nao sei onde comecar. Voce poderia me dizer que tipo de empresa pagaria voce para trabalhar em projetos assim, pra ir ao Brasil e trabalhar e ajudar em projetos ambientais? Ou tal vez o que voce estudou na universidade pra levar voce a esta carreira? Eu sei que tal vez isso parece estranho e nao sei sim tem resposta mas eu tenho que comecar em algum lugar e perguntar a uma pessoa que ta fazendo o que eu quero, eu acho que e um bom lugar:)

  31. Abdalan da Gama says:

    Parabéns pelo blog. Adorei sua página — há aqui uma enorme quantidade de informações para os que desejam aprender português e dicas valiosíssimas para qualquer um que deseje aprender qualquer língua.

    Quando quiser bater um papo em português, não hesite em entrar em contato.

  32. Tarcisio Buriti says:

    Lauren, parabens pelo blog. Eu sou autor do livro Aquareal Portuguese for Foreigners e gostaria de introduzi-lo em seu site.
    Seria possivel conversarmos sobre o Aquarela e dar-lhe mais detalhes?
    Tarcisio Buriti

  33. Tarcisio Buriti says:

    Desculpe-me o nome correto do livro Aquarela

  34. Felipe says:

    Hi Laure, thanks a lot for your hard work.
    I recently created a channel on IRC, called #portuguese-br on the freenode network.
    I’d be glad if you can divulgue us on your blog.
    Our goal is divulge the portuguese brazilian language and give a support to those who want to learn it severely.
    Also, sorry for my mistakes in english, I’m not a native speaker, just trying to do my best to express me.

  35. Philippe G says:

    Hi Lauren,

    I love your site and have been recommending it to all my co-workers (retail environment in Miami with lots of Brazilian customers)

    I feel like I’m about to put together peanut butter and chocolate… I have found another excellent resource for people interested in living in or long term visiting Brazil. Its a site called expat-blog dot com. Their Brazil forum is moderated by an 11 year expat named James. He is an incredible wealth of knowledge about processes in Brazil (known for their bureaucratic ways) I strongly recommend you give it look and add it to your personal resources at least.


    Philippe – Miami Beach

    • Lauren says:

      Hi Phillipe, I’m trying to keep Hacking Portuguese strictly language-focused, but thanks for introducing me to expat-blog! I never heard so much Portuguese in the US as when I was transferring through Miami International — Brazilians everywhere!

  36. Michelle says:

    I’m loving your site, not only for your curation of all these awesome resources but also because your advice about how to approach language learning, generally, its right on. I think your right about the connection between languages and music. People who have or develop an ear for notes seem to be better imitators of native pronunciation, and really getting the cadence of a language is a lot like understanding the rhythm of a song. Plus, aside from all the kind people who simply conversed with me while I was learning Spanish, I credit music with how I learned vocabulary and especially grammar (mostly) painlessly. Can’t wait to get there with Portuguese. Parbens para este site!

  37. Eduardo says:

    Hey Lauren! How are you today?
    First of all, this is such an amazing website and idea, congratulations!
    I found it cause I’ve been searching for other benchmarks on Portuguese classes for foreigners as I started to teach it here in Curitiba, Parana.
    Please let me know if you want to make some kind of partnership, specially if you need someone to indicate for practical Portuguese here in Curitiba.
    I really want to hear from you..
    Many thanks!
    My best.

  38. Ivan P says:

    Hi, Lauren,

    Great blog! We (me and my wife) came across it when searching for some online resources for learning Portuguese. In fact we started to learn this nice language a year ago and still seem to be in the middle:-). What can be sure – we were “hacked” by Portuguese people and culture in 2011 and even married in Portugal 2 years ago…Unfortunately never been to Brazil – and this is probably the reason why Portugal is our No1 choice!

    We were very astonished to find you try to learn Bulgarian:-) – our native language! Should we can help you – let us know:-) Voce seja sempre bem-vindo em Bulgaria!

    Many thanks for the great site and keep on with it!

  39. Květa says:

    Hi Lauren,

    another source that could be helpful is http://www.dict.com/Portuguese-English

    Apart from large dictionary it also contains grammar overview and phrase book. It´s for free, online and I think it´s great source for students, travelers or anyone actually :)

    Check it… I would love to hear what you think!

  40. Shana says:

    Can’t help it, but after going over your blog I feel compelled to write and say thanks! I’m a Californian too, who recently fell for a Brazilian musician (Sertenejo) and am heading down to Sao Paulo for the first time in two weeks to immerse myself in the life, language and music!

    I’m also an active language language learner – I have an almost monogamous with German haha. It’s nice to benefit from someone else’s years of love for a language to weed out all of the overwhelming content. It’s wasted so much my time when I did Spanish and French;)

    If you happen to be in Sao Paulo anytime soon, please do let me know! I’m launching my language site there, Chatterplot (www.chatterplot.com), a site that allows you to find language partners and tutors near home:) Cheers, from Colombia! Shana

  41. Inge says:

    An outstanding share! I have just forwarded this onto a co-worker who has been conducting a little homework
    on this. And he in fact bought me breakfast
    because I found it for him… lol. So let
    me reword this…. Thanks for the meal!! But yeah,
    thanks for spending time to discuss this issue here on your
    internet site.

  42. Larry says:

    I have scoured the internet for clear explanations, quality examples, practice and other Portuguese resources. Your site is the most outstanding and understandable! I hope you never run out of steam for posting new and interesting things. I am so enjoying it!!!

  43. Glen says:

    Just to let you know, the LiveMocha community is permanently shut down.

  44. Marlon says:

    Hey there, I must say, what a great resource for Portuguese learners. It is especially interesting for me you haven’t neglected the European Portuguese, about which there isn’t that much online for folks to explore.

    Anyway, thanks for adding my wife’s website to that list of PT (EU) online resources. We’re just starting out but we really appreciate your acknowledgment.

    Btw, we’ve just starting doing a free podcast. Have a look and If you feel it’s worth the mention, we’re love to spread the word. Here’s an episode example:

  45. Boz says:

    Hi Lauren,

    Just want to thank you for the article on Rhotics.

    Your writing is very polished. Well thought out, well laid out — quality stuff. I am just passing through myself. Based on a quick look around it seems the whole site is up to the same standard.


  46. michelle says:

    I very much appreciate that you offer some advice on European Portuguese. As we all know those resources are hard to find. Here is a YouTube channel I Stumbled upon that is quite awesome. You may like to check it out and add it to your European resources. Great Job by the way on such a great site. Thumbs up all the way. I also put the link below where you have a website block.

  47. Zhang Hong says:

    Hello from China! There is an Android app in Google Play, Learn Portuguese in 10 Days, an introductory (Brazilian) Portuguese course for Chinese autodidacts, I’m the author of the app. In China, most people learn English, and Lusophones are extremely rare. I accidentally found your site, I like it.

  48. Patrick Daniel says:

    Hi Lauren, I just found your site. After 3 years of spending a lot of time in the Sao Paulo area (and learning an incredibly small amount of Portuguese since my then girl friend is an English teacher and almost all her friends and family speak English) I moved here as a permanent resident 4 months ago after getting married. So now it’s time to get serious about my language learning. I’ve been using Pimsleur and like it. I’m looking forward to exploring this site and picking up any tips that can help me speed up my learning.
    Oh yeah, I was living in the Sacramento area so we were neighbors. I pick a little guitar so send a note if you ever get close to SP! Tchau, Patrick

    • Patrick says:

      Interesting, I had a girlfriend in Santos for 4 years that would only speak English with me because I couldn’t understand her. Now after studying 4.5 years and going to Brasil 14 times I still can’t understand people when they speak which prevents me from conversing. It’s frustrating. I study every day and practice speaking and writing with a Brasilian for 1-3 hours every day too. Good luck! Patrick O

    • Mick O' Leary says:

      Pimsleur is great. It is how I learned Portuguese!

  49. Celisa Canto says:

    Oi Lauren,

    espero que esteja bem.
    Fazendo uma pesquisa na internet, vi um link onde você diz que fez 2 meses de aula comigo.
    Peço-lhe mil desculpas, mas não estou lembrada disso.
    Você poderia me refrescar a memória?
    Adorei seu site.

    Abração e até,
    Celisa Canto

  50. Masoud says:

    Hi there,

    One of my friend want to buy a dictionary from Portuguese to English from USA. Here in lran we can not find. Which one is complete?



    • Paul M says:


      I have had good luck with the Larousse dictionary for a travel-friendly resource. In my study I like more thorough dictionaries – so I have the Oxford hardbound.

      Otherwise, for online resources between Linguee and Wordreference and just plain google (for slang/girias), I have had good results.

      Um abraço,


  51. Kent C. Dillon says:

    Your site is wonderful. You are an excellent writer and very insightful. However, as I was looking at your site, I see it is not HTTPS secure. You might want to convert it to a secure format. Thanks. Kent Dillon

  52. Paul M says:

    Hi Lauren,

    Do you keep up with this site? Several years back when I began my journey with Portuguese from Spanish your work was absolutely instrumental with getting a plan and resources together. I’ve since gained fluency, travelled throughout worked, and will now betting married in Brazil.

    Obrigado pelo successo! Um abraço desde Michigan.


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