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Schools to learn Polish in Warsaw

9 Dec 2006 /  #1
Hi you all just wondering if any one had some tips on any schools in warsaw that teach polish for outsiders like myself !!!! I will be heading over to see how hard is to learn the lingo and how cold the place can be then if all go's right might stay around for longer ...

thanks me the crazy Brazilian
Maati 1 | 178  
9 Dec 2006 /  #2

storm80 - | 4  
25 Apr 2008 /  #3
i am looking for a language school in warsaw. i am hoping to do a 4 week intensive course so prob 60 hours.
i've found these:
Klub Dialogu: Europejski Hotel, 13 Krakowskie Przedmieście St., room 160
IKO, 3 Kopernika St.
Schola Polonica, 3 Jaracza St.
Academia Polonica, 55 Jerozolimskie Ave., apt. 15
anybody know anything about them or can recommend any others?
gracie 1 | 7  
29 Apr 2008 /  #4

Do you want to lern English or Polish? I know a very good school if its English.
storm80 - | 4  
30 Apr 2008 /  #5
its polish i want to study
db1874 7 | 227  
30 Apr 2008 /  #6
you could try 'Centrum Jezyka Polskiego'
ksanjay 1 | 22  
28 Jul 2008 /  #7
[Moved from]: Polish language school near Centrum, Warsaw (to sign up for a language course)

Can anybody provide some information on some good polish language school near Centrum, Warshaw?
I will be here for 3 months and would like to join some weekend polish language course.
sobieski 107 | 2,128  
30 Jul 2008 /  #8
IKO is a good one (or used to be good when I was there a few years ago) Courses run for 66 hours / 3 months.
You can find them close to Foksal and on
dondonf - | 14  
1 Aug 2008 /  #9

General course (60 lesson units)

The classes are in the morning or in the afternoon (2 x 2 lesson units). Each lesson unit equals 45 minutes.

WarsawNoob 14 | 24  
1 Aug 2008 /  #10
How much are the lesson?
Do you have "survival" Polish?
20 Apr 2009 /  #11
Or you can try here:
12 Jul 2009 /  #12
Ready! Steady! Polish! is a good one. Run by expats but with all native Polish teachers.
Check out w w

Good luck!
12 Jul 2009 /  #13
Anyone studied at IKO?
livalg - | 3  
26 Sep 2009 /  #14
Sep 26, 09, 14:05 - Thread attached on merging:
Language schools in Warsaw

Could anyone recommend any good (and not very expensive) language schools in town? I'm interested in Polish and German.
What are their usual fees and how many hours per module do they offer?

IrishinPoland 1 | 22  
27 Sep 2009 /  #15
Klub Dialogu was 90 zł for one on one lessons 3 years ago (I don't think they do groups). If you had a partner it was 50 zł. Overpriced and crap quality of teaching. I think they hired a lot of philology students and the teachers I had were poor quality.

I did four courses in IKO ( and I think they are really good up to B1 level. I didn't find the B2 course so good cause I guess I wanted more communication at this stage.

They produce their own text books ( designed not to be self-study, for obvious reasons, i.e. so people like me who have done the course can't pass on the texts and cds to you for free:-) The teachers are very good but I could never get my head around why they photocopied page after page from the book for every student for every class despite the fact that everyone had a course book (it's included in the fee). From others who have studies in Warsaw I can say it is probably the best school. I'm pretty sure it's cheaper than CJP too, but just go online as IKO's prices and course dates are all clear. Do it quick though cause I think they are due to start new courses at the end of Sept./start of Oct. If you want any more info. don't hesitate to ask. Browse the forum threads cause others have made enquiries about good text books to use. I used Hurra A2 but you really need a good teacher for it. I found the texts in the workbook pretty weird, as did the Polish teachers and friends I showed. They old me that the articles in the workbook especially had a lot of language that is not used much in everyday Polish.

As a reference book get Polish grammar by Dana Bielec (I think that's her name).

Check out lessons on youtube, especially the ones by this guy:

And most importantly, refuse to speak English as much as possible when you meet Polish people. If you are completely stuck and it's a life and death situation, then consider getting your point across in some foreign language. But I gotta say, after being here on and off for 3 years (and being away altogether for the past 14 months), the last few weeks here since I arrived back have been really great because I just tell everybody 'Nie rozumiem' when they speak English too me. After a couple of hardcore weeks at this your communication skills will improve rapidly. Don't let anybody do anything for you - buy your own tickets, go shopping and ask for spuds, broccoli in the local bazaar. Just force yourself to do it and believe me you will be rewarded.

Polish is such a challenging but beautiful language and despite it being obviously difficult don't let anybody convince you that it is impossible to learn. The only person who can stop you from picking up enough to communicate well in most situations is your own lack of self-belief. So peg that out the window and get cracking at it, don't guilt-trip yourself for making slow progress and if you feel you are regressing. Keep plucking away, whether it be through courses, chit-chatting with your local shop owner about what ever comes into your head or asking people for the time at bus stops (just hide your watch and mobile phone cause they'll think you are trying to pick them up).

Livalg, email the schools if you don't get the info you want on their websites, which I expect you will. Tell them what you want and they will tell you what they have. Or even better, go there in person and try to practice your Polish. Rehearse with someone first so you feel confident.
vndunne 43 | 279  
28 Sep 2009 /  #16
I did 2 courses (A0 and A1) in IKO, and i found them good. totally agree with Irishinpoland about the photcopies..but that is just a minor point. I would have continued on there, but i live in poznan so it was not practical.

In relation to grammar books, i would recommend 'Polish in 4 weeks'. Ignore the claim of the wont happen. But it is a very good grammar book and explains it very simply. They essentially have 28 chapters hitting bits of grammar in each chapter along with a conversation. They have the polsih converstaion and also the english transalation. Very user friendly.

Just read the rest of mail from Irishinpoland and totally agree with Irishinpoland advice on learning polish(i just have to adopt it...). Starting off is the hardest bit but doing the course in IKO got me over the hump/fear at looking at the huge task of learning polish. After the course, i was surprised that, even though you dont know that many words, how much you can then pick up when listeneing to people talk.
IrishinPoland 1 | 22  
28 Sep 2009 /  #17
'Polish in 4 weeks' is a good basic book alright. I noticed recently that there are a lot of books available for Polish language learning a few years ago. I think them youtube videos by Magauchsein are a great resource to have. Władysław Miodunka has some interesting books. I did the A0/A1 'Cześć, jak się masz?' and although I wasn't very disciplined I'd recommend it. There is a whole series of books by him up to B2 level, I think.
LondonChick 31 | 1,133  
28 Sep 2009 /  #18
Have you seen these gusy who offer Polish classes via Skype? I'm considering them...
vndunne 43 | 279  
28 Sep 2009 /  #19
No. Any good?

Not sure if you saw it but there is a link on their 'Links' page to an article in a magazine. It does read well, taking into consideration that they are promoting themselves. Might look them up at some stage. Would definitely be interested in sitting down with someone for that amount of time on certain subjects...Need to try and get back into it.

IrishinPoland 1 | 22  
28 Sep 2009 /  #20
Somebody on another thread recommended them already although I find 60 zł an hour for skype or 75zł for one on one very steep. I did Polish lessons with a Polish teacher of English from my school. She had a great grasp of grammar structures and I knew she was a nice, punctual, organised and dedicated teacher. She charged 50 zł an hour which I think was fair price. That was 2 years ago.

LondonChick, if you are in Warsaw I'd contact IKO on ul. Chmielna. I'm pretty sure they also conduct individual lessons and my experiences with their teachers are very good. They also facilitate certified exams in Polish. What's more, threads on this site and dave's esl cafe have Poles looking for language exchange classes one to one or via skype. Of course some guys might prefer to have a girl as a language exchangee for a whole host of reasons but I'm pretty sure if you shop around you would get good and free skype lessons with a Polish person.

Not trying to dissuade you from this but it does seem like a new set up so I would ask for contact with other students they have to see if you can get some feedback about them. I'll have a look for that thread where the guy wrote he took classes with them. Will let you know if I find it.

That article on ReadySteadyPolish self-promoting can be found here.

They sound genuine and it's an interesting business concept. I would not sign up for a full course without having a demo lesson. Too risky as they do not give any info. about the qualifications or experience of their teachers.

They mention that their experiences with language schools here have been bad but as I've written I found the teachers and staff at IKO very friendly and helpful when I studied there.

Iko used to organise or aid in organising free social evenings where a teacher would go out with students for a drink and everybody would speak in Polish. I was only at it twice, didn't drink and yet found it great fun.

Is there any conversation club like that which can be found here, for example through public libraries or ?????

yeah, it's good. I did 3 courses there. Klub Dialogu was not good 3 years ago. Try language exhange for free via skype or just meet somebody in town a few times a week. Cost you less money and will be more effective if you combine this with a one on one teacher to do intense grammar work. I'd pay no more than 50 zł an hour.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,322  
28 Sep 2009 /  #21
They mention that their experiences with language schools here have been bad

In my opinion, it's quite a common marketing tactic to claim that the people setting up the business were 'dissatisfied' with the competition - leading gullible readers to assume that they must somehow be better than the rest.

Somebody on another thread recommended them already although I find 60 zł an hour for skype or 75zł for one on one very steep.

60zl an hour for Skype is a ripoff, plain and simple. You can get Polish lessons at my school (with an invoice, blah blah) for 65zl an hour - and bearing in mind the dreadful quality of Skype, it doesn't seem like a good deal at all. 75zl face to face isn't bad, but I'd expect the classes to be held in a school and not at the individuals home for that price.

I'm not convinced that the quality of Skype (or indeed the phone!) is conductive for learning.
IrishinPoland 1 | 22  
29 Sep 2009 /  #22
I'd agree with you re. Skype. The most pressing issue for me as regards readysteadypolish is who are their teachers and what qualifications do they have. I couldn't care 2 lumps of sugar whether the receptionist licked my h*** which is what the founders are complaining of - poor customer service. They mentioned lessons cancelled at the last minute. I never had that experience. The other way round is a 100 times more common in my opinion, flaky students ringing at the last minute to cancel. Thankfully my fixed contract with the school I work with pays me for no shows by the students and of course they don't get an additional lesson or anything. If they cancel 24 hours before then a new lesson is arranged.

For 75zł I'd expect the teacher to come to my home with a nice box of biscuits, make the tea and do the laundry. If they would only provide the lesson, 50 zł max. unless they have good qualifications and they know their stuff inside out.
livalg - | 3  
29 Sep 2009 /  #23
Thanks for the info, IrishinPoland! :) How good are you now at speaking Polish, on a scale from 1 to 10?
30 Sep 2009 /  #24
Do any affordable full year courses? I'm very interested. I've spent six weeks in Krakow, and I spent entirely way to much.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,322  
30 Sep 2009 /  #25
I'd agree with you re. Skype. The most pressing issue for me as regards readysteadypolish is who are their teachers and what qualifications do they have.

More importantly, they don't appear to actually have any physical premises. I'd be very hesitant to hand over any money to such an operation upfront, particularly if they want 1125PLN for 15 hours of face to face teaching at a location that isn't theirs.

I've had a look on their site and they're offering group lessons from January - 30 hours for 750zl. That's 25zl an hour - why would you bother, when you could get a decently trained Polish teacher for 40zl an hour maximum for private lessons? More to the point, for someone just starting out, you can easily get a student of English philology to teach you basic Polish for 20-30zl an hour.

There's also this -

We select teachers with:

Excellent communication skills in English and Polish

1st class customer service awareness


What about qualifications?

To be honest, my opinion is that it looks like they've set up a language school to gouge gullible expats willing to pay for something on expenses. But anyone can do what they're doing - it certainly doesn't look like anything special.
IrishinPoland 1 | 22  
30 Sep 2009 /  #26
delphiandomine has made some very good points above. I think the main thing is to shop around and not just sign up for something 'to force yourself' to learn the language. I definitely think language exchange with someone you find here or on gumtree is good for starters. Ok, people might not show up, etc. but if you read carefully into what people are looking for such free language exchanges then you'll easily rule out the tossers. For example, ex-pat guys seeking girls only to have a language exchange with may not have learning or teaching a language as their main priority. Look out for people who are doing Matura, FCE, CAE, CPE courses - they will be serious about improving their fluency in English and will have a sufficiently good grasp of grammar structures to explain the basics in Polish.

Livalg, on a scale from 1 to 10 I dunno. In terms of official language levels I did A1 (Elementary), A2 (Pre-Intermediate), B1 (Intermediate) and B2 (Upper Intermediate) with IKO. I did A2 with Klub Dialogu using Hurra A2 book. I found them classes a waste of money. Before I came to Poland in Dec. 2005 I did maybe 30 hours of AO (Beginners) in Dublin's Trinity College. I spent the summer of 2006 and 2007 out of Poland and left again in July 2008 returning to Warsaw after a 14 month break just recently.

If you know about language levels, then B2 is about FCE standard in English. Though most of the students I have in FCE are way better in English than I am at Polish.

So I guess I am about Intermediate stage. The news is too hard for me too understand alhough I can pick up what they say in soap operas here. Radio discussions that involve more than 2 people are hard for me to follow. It really depends on who I am talking to and the subject matter. Sometimes I feel like I'm flying it, other times like I am 'glupi jak boot!'

Quite plain and simple, if you get to A2/B1 level refuse to speak English unless of course your house is burning down and you have to explain something something to a fireman who understands English.

Necessity is the mother of all invention. My fiancee went to the Urzad to enquire about the formalities of us getting married. She was told I would need an official translator in my dealings with them at their office and for me to say my vows unless they could communicate with me in Polish. I'm thinking, 'no bloody way', so gotta get cracking. I'm getting married here next year and don't want our kids to be better than their Da at Polish when they are 3 years old.

Sometimes I even think our cat is better than me sometimes!

There is no shortage of Polish language resources online either for those who like to self-learn or don't have the cash to get a tutor.

Check this out:

I hope I don't come across on this thread as someone who is promoting free, self-learning over receiving tuition from a trained professional. I think doing courses are good once you can find a reputable school with qualified teachers or a private tutor.

It's nice to meet other people also learning Polish and I really enjoyed my time at IKO.

I'm not a disciplined learner and can go for ages without picking up a book but I guess the key is to appreciate tv, radio, newspaper browsing, advertisement/flyer reading and spoken interactions, no matter how short, as part of the language development process.

I'd suggest bringing round a pocket size Polish-English, English-Polish dictionary with you and a small notebook wherever you go. When you see 'that word' (let's say it's' 'zapach') for the fourth time this week on the metro news screen you can just quickly look it up and note it down so it sticks in your head, rather than travelling on the metro again the following week, seeing 'that word' (zapach) and still not know what the hell it means!
vndunne 43 | 279  
1 Oct 2009 /  #27
Irishinpoland...words of wishdom about carrying around a pocket book. I have finally picked up my teach yourself books again...and was listening to a few conversations from 'Polish in 4 weeks' CD this morning on my way to work on the tram.

ONe of the most important things is, to actually listen. I tended to switch off when a conversation in polish is going on. But now i am trying to listen in to converstaion even to get a few words. With time, i hope it will get better.....
db1874 7 | 227  
1 Oct 2009 /  #28
I tried both the IKO and CJP schools, both were good but I much preferred the smaller class sizes at CJP.
Amy - | 2  
21 Oct 2009 /  #29
Friend of mine studied at the Centre for Polish Studies at Świętokrzyska ( and he was satisfied. Groups are small and teachers are qualified. Of course, sometimes it's individual if you like your teacher or you don't, so the best way is to go and check.

And I totally agree with IrishinPoland as far as the dictionary is concerned! Sometimes people want to learn quickly without any efford and think it's teachers fault when we don't make any progres. But taking classes is one thing and the other is what we do to learn it!

Good luck with your Polish!

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