I stumbled upon METRO club before it launched and have participated since Day 1. At the time I felt I was at a high A2, low B1 level and METRO club was exactly what I needed. It required some extra work  on my part to maximize the usefulness of the materials presented but it has been well worth it. I like the multiple tiered approach – Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing. The weekly podcasts provide an insight into not just the language but the culture. As someone that lives and works in Moscow, I’ve noticed myself immediately using a concept I learned from the lessons.

I’ve also been doing private lessons with Marina for over half a year. The private lessons have helped to fill in my knowledge gap about cases, while the podcasts provide a more general knowledge base. I’ve noticed an improvement in my listening and speaking, as well as reading and understanding. The writing is still a work in progress but its also not the focus of this course. 

The program is very unique. All of the materials are created by Marina which means she knows how to teach/explain the materials. She isn’t using someone else’s textbook and just doing boring exercises with you. Most importantly, the podcasts truly train your ear to pick up the language the way natives talk and that is very important. 

Marina also clearly explains how to use the materials. First to listen to the podcasts before even looking at the text, to see how much you can understand. The podcasts are presented at two speeds, one normal and one slower. I listen to the same weekly podcasts daily during breakfast and can understand how my brain is trained by the end of the week. The quick native speech from Monday seems normal speed by Friday and the slower speech from Monday seems like a turtle by the end of the week. But the slower speech is very useful for understanding where the stress is in the word.

Overall, Marina is easily the best teacher I have ever had with Russian. She knows the language inside and out and can answer any questions I have regarding history or context of certain words. She also focuses on the stress in the word, as well as government forms (which words/grammar come after certain verbs) and that is not something most teachers even discuss. She wants you to understand and speak the language as a native from the outset of your studies. 

I would recommend METRO Club to anyone that has a general foundation of vocabulary, a cursory understanding of the grammar, and is ready for the next step. But even if you aren’t ready for the next step, private lessons with Marina will help you up your level quickly to understand the podcasts. 

Marina gives you all the tools to be successful and it is up to you to use them wisely. I could be far more advanced if I would spend more time with the materials than I do, but I am very satisfied with my current progress and would recommend Marina and her METRO club to anyone interested in learning the language.