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Best Ways To Learn A New Language

Best Ways To Learn A New Language

January 15, 2020 / Patrick Zavorskas

Learning a new language is easier than you may think! Whether you want to learn a new language for your career, to talk to locals on your next planned trip, or just simply want to learn a new language as a new hobby, finding ways to learn a new language has become more efficient than ever. Here are some practical and efficient tips for those who want to start learning fast!

Get Over The Initial Fear and Doubt

Learning a new language can be tedious - there are limitless vocabulary that needs to be learned, an array of challenging grammar rules, and numerous expressions all involved with advancing within your learning. As stressful as that may seem, it is important to remember that learning does take time, and it is important to take it one step at a time. Know that is will be hard at first, but practice will pay off in the end!

Set Goals

As in with learning any new skill, setting practical goals can help focus what you want to achieve. Starting off with smaller, more tangible goals such as, "I want to learn ten new vocabulary words every week" is more effective than simply stating you are going to learn a new language. In setting goals such as these, we recommend these tips:

  1. Keep A Language Journal: Simply being by writing down a list of your top ten goals in learning a new language - these can be anything from learning how to say basic phrases like "hello" or "how are you doing today", to learning basic grammar such as the past tense. Clearly outlining and visually seeing these goals can help keep you organized and focused. 
  2. Set Practical Challenging Goals: Setting challenging goals can help motivate you within your practices. Providing yourself an incentive in achieving these goals can help make the challenge more fun, while allowing you to push yourself and your skills further. 
  3. Set Goals Around Your Schedule: Setting goals that focus on your day and schedule is way to bring your "learning a new language" goals into real-life. Create a goal such as, "I want to use 15 new food-based vocabulary words I learned at the grocery store". In doing so can you help provide more of a visual to the word while also bring a different environment to your learning experience.

Find A Teacher or Opt For An App

In trying to build a new skill like learning a new language, finding a teacher is one of the most effective ways within development. Being able to interact with someone who has mastered the dialect and language can help build real-life practical skills in developing the language. Your teacher can aid in pronunciation of words, help build your accent, and will be able to provide conversations for you which is a lot more helpful than learning a language on your own. However, if your schedule doesn't allow time for language tutoring, there are many language apps that have shown to be just as effective. These are the ones we have found: 

  1. Babbel: Babbel is an online language school that focuses heavily on conversation building rather than vocabulary building through repetition. Each lesson is built based on the users native language and interests, and designs real-life conversations for you with native speakers of the languages you want to learn. It uses human voice recognition to ensure that you are speaking confidently and will also provide you with curated review sessions to reinforce what you have learned. 
  2. Duolingo: Duolingo is one of the most well-known language-learning apps! Duolingo allows you to learn multiple languages at once, providing you with colorful visuals and fun exercises to ensure you are building your skills. They rely more on repetition-based learning, with every exercise building off the last. They even offer a test before you start learning the language to see if you know any basic grammar or vocabulary to ensure you are repeating things you already know. 
  3. Memrise: Memrise is similar to Babbel in which it is built around conversational learning. The user will watch and interact with videos from native speakers engaging in conversations, which helps in understanding authentic native voices and accents. Memrise also provides a more cultural approach to learning a new language, allowing the user to learn the history and cultural impact behind the words and conversations they are learning. 

In The End, Have Fun

In learning a new skill, we tend to learn it best while we are having fun. Try bringing your new skills into your hobbies! If you enjoy being outside and going on hikes, try practicing vocabulary words that associate with your surroundings. If you like cooking, try reading and preparing a recipe in the language you are learning. Simple ideas like these can make learning a new skill more enjoyable while also allowing you to keep on practicing. 

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-Patrick