Did you know? Nearly 50 million people speak Ukrainian. The language is the second-most popular Slavic language following Russian and it’s the 26th most widespread language on the planet. So, if you’re looking to learn Ukrainian, you definitely wouldn’t be alone.
Whether you’d like to learn Ukrainian as part of your higher education or for work, if you’re taking a Ukrainian language-learning class either in person or online, then you might find yourself in need of a little extra help. That’s where language-learning podcasts come in.
Language-learning podcasts are a great complement to any online or in-person language course. They’re easy to access from anywhere, any time, and teach you a huge array of language-related concepts, from vocabulary words to grammar to culture and history.
We’ve compiled eight recommended Ukrainian podcasts that can help you in your endeavor to learn this amazing language.
Podcasts for Beginners
If you have absolutely no prior experience with Ukrainian, then you’re going to want to start with some of these podcasts aimed at beginner learners. They take you right through some of the most basic concepts, so you can build a strong and comprehensive Ukrainian foundation.
The Ukrainian Lessons podcast is a great option for beginners, as it takes you through more than 100 episodes, starting with learning the most common 100 Ukrainian words and then leading you through more advanced vocabulary, grammar, and even songs.
The podcast is hosted by a Ukrainian teacher and educational resources developer, and she’s added lots of extra resources on her website to enable learners to further their progress. You can find free vocabulary lists, flashcards, pronunciation guides and even a guide to the top 1,000 most useful Ukrainian words. The podcast is updated every week with a new episode and each episode is somewhere between 20 and 30 minutes in length.
Of course, you can’t really learn Ukrainian in one minute, but this podcast does provide you with short, quick hits of Ukrainian language lessons, so you can get in a little extra practice to complement your Ukrainian lessons elsewhere. While the podcast is no longer being updated, it does have a backlog of episodes that teach you basics such as useful travel phrases, numbers, conversational phrases and more.
Similarly, this simply named Ukrainian Podcast has nine lessons, all a few years old, but all offering a quick hit of language learning opportunities, covering the basics of vocabulary, grammar, and Ukrainian literature.
When you begin to further develop your Ukrainian language skills, you’ll find that you can understand a good bit of Ukrainian vocabulary words and even start to form entire sentences. As you get to this level, it’s wise to keep challenging yourself by adding more and more Ukrainian to your everyday life in place of English. One way to do this? Listening to podcasts that are fully or mostly in Ukrainian.
This podcast (not to be confused with the similarly named Ukrainian Podcast above) only has a few episodes, but each is a mix of Ukrainian and English, with speakers of both languages discussing Ukrainian topics of interest. You can compare and contrast the English and Ukrainian versions and read along to script when they’re available, to help you further comprehend Ukrainian as you’re hearing it in a common (ie, not instructional) setting.
Nasha Kasha is a similar podcast that features both English and Ukrainian audio (though less Ukrainian than you’ll hear in The Ukrainian Podcast above). It focuses on Ukrainian life, travel and events, as well as music on occasion. The podcast is updated every single week and episodes are about a half-hour each.
One thing you can also do at the intermediate stage of learning a language is to begin learning about that language’s culture, news, and history as well. The Made in Ukraine podcast is kept pretty up to date, with new episodes uploaded a few times each month. The podcast features interviews with Ukrainian entrepreneurs and leaders, so listeners can get a feel for Ukraine’s issues, economy, and concerns on a global scale.
When you’re ready to move into more advanced Ukrainian language concepts, you’ll want to begin listening to more and more Ukrainian audio — the same programming that many native Ukrainians listen to, to get their news, entertainment and more. This will help you know when you’re truly excelling in learning Ukrainian, and areas you might need more practice.
The Selector is a good fully Ukrainian podcast to start out listening to, because it has a separate version in English, meaning you could listen to one and then the other and make sure that you’re able to follow along. Each episode is rather lengthy, over an hour each, and episodes were regularly uploaded up until October 2019. There are more than 50 episodes in total.
This podcast focuses on international news, events, lifestyle stories, interviews, and features. Created by the Special Broadcasting Service, it’s spoken entirely in Ukrainian but focuses on issues and news stories that you should already be familiar with, making it easier for you to follow along.
Learning Ukrainian might not be that easy of an endeavor, but it’s certainly a worthwhile one. Podcasts can be a great way to continue your education, brush up on old skills and learn new ones, all while supporting Ukrainian media and podcasters, and learning more about Ukrainian culture and news.
Are there any great Ukrainian podcasts that we missed? Let us know about them!