Learning a new language with a tailor made course, based on your needs and with a dedicated teacher, is, obviously, the best choice you can make, and it lays solid foundations. However, if the desire of learning is strong, there are some methods that can help you learn a new language, when starting from scratch or even when consolidating the results you’re obtaining, if you’re following a course. Here’s what you can do!
1. A first step consists in looking for all the available alternatives to school’s textbooks and audiovisual materials. You can read newspapers or magazines of the country whose language you want to learn; this way you can also approach its up-to-date news, trends and culture. Even gossip, of course! Reading contents related to real facts can be a strong motivational driver, since they can stimulate your curiosity. If you’re starting from scratch, a good idea is also to begin by listening to children’s songs or watching kids’ TV programs, where the words are pronounced clearly; finding these materials on the internet is really easy.
2. A second tip is to focus on your hobbies and learn the basic grammar and vocabulary related to this area. A great way to start a conversation is actually to talk about what we like! So if you love music, you could learn music instruments’ names, listen to the music you like and translate the lyrics. If you love sport, start by learning words related to matches and competitions. Whatever it is, a hobby or a sport, a basic grammar textbook could be useful to use the language in other contexts.
3. A third point concerns the “exposition” to the language. The easiest way to assimilate a new language is to deal with it as much as possible. It could be funny to write the words we want to learn on labels and stick them on the relative objects in the house. There’s no limit to this, since you can include colors, weekdays, numbers, nations and so on. The only limit is your immagination!
4. Another way to dive in a new language, is to watch movies or TV series in the original version. You could start by putting subtitles in your language and after a while in the original language. If you’re at home working or doing chores, you can also tune into foreign radio stations online.
5. The previous tips are great, however, they are just a passive method of learning a language. So, here’s the fifth tip: you need to talk, talk, and talk! To learn to speak a new language you need to talk as much as you can. The more you talk, the more you gain confidence in your talk! If you have native speaker’ friends or if they are learning the same language, why not try to communicate like that?
6. Last but not least. There is a sixth tip which is just one word: travel! If you can, travel and visit the countries where the language is spoken, so that you can practice it straight at its source!
We were inspired by: 5 tips to learn a language in 2019 (BBC.com)