9 Tips to Learn a New Language
Want to learn a new language but struggle to find good ways to compliment the learning process?
We’ve put together 9 tips to give you a helping hand.
1. Set concrete tasks for yourself
Learning a new language requires a high degree of self-discipline. Set learning targets for yourself, whether it is learning 3 new vocabularies every day or spending 30 mins a day practising pronunciation. To make sure the tasks are achievable, after creating the tasks, ask yourself — Can I really manage them? Fully commit to them if you think you can. If not, moderate the tasks until you are confident enough to say that you can fulfill them. The tasks act as learning assignments to help you progress in the learning journey.
2. Read, read and read
Learn new vocabularies, expressions and sentence patterns through reading. Reading is an easy approach to practice, considering that the pace of learning can be adjusted of your own free will. You can spend time studying a particular phrase for as long as you want. Pick a book in the language you are learning, ideally a book that you have already read in your native language, so you have an idea of the overall gist already, making it easier for you to focus on the use of language. If you’re a beginner, starting with children books might be a good idea as the simple language inside suits your language level.
3. Talk with native speakers
Seize chances to have conversations with native speakers. Casual language is something you learn mostly through real life interactions, most of which are not taught inside classrooms. A wide variety of slang expressions are used in casual conversations. There are numerous ways to meet native speakers, with an online platform being the most accessible way. Social media is a convenient medium to meet friends from other countries.
4. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, learn from them
Mistakes mean room for improvement so embrace them! Whenever you discover a mistake, correct it and mark it down to remind yourself not to make the same mistake again. By identifying your mistakes, you know which area you should work on to minimize your errors gradually. It’s all about getting better by learning from your mistakes.
5. Apply what you have learnt in daily life
Both acquisition and application are essential for achieving an effective learning experience. Even if you have memorised a whole dictionary, the words would slip your memory easily without application. Right after you’ve learnt a new word, use them a few times, whether it is including it in a conversation or writing a few sentences with it. This strengthens your memory so the word will stick with you longer. Associating words with your social experiences can link the word with your emotions, which reinforces the impression of a word in your mind.
6. Expose yourself to the language every day
Living in a city where the common language isn’t the language you’re studying should not be a barrier to getting enough exposure. Among abundant online resources, you can find a great deal of learning material with just a few clicks. YouTube videos, movies and songs are some options to learn in a more entertaining way. If you want to speed up your learning, joining a language course online is an even better choice as it provides diverse learning material that is best for your language learning.
7. Keep a language notebook
Language learning requires frequent repetition and revision. Regularly reviewing what you’ve learnt helps memorization. Yes, you might be able to remember the word you’ve just learnt a few minutes ago, yet the memory of that word is weak. To intensify the memory, you should write the word down onto a notebook and review it once in awhile. Go through the notebook over and over again until you’ve stored that word into your brain. Whenever you have to write something, you can apply the words stored in the notebook.
8. Read aloud every day
Pick an interesting article from the newspaper, focus on a short passage, read it out loud and listen to your pronunciation. When it comes to oral language, precision always comes before pace so don’t neglect the accuracy of your pronunciation to scramble your speech. Record yourself reading it and listen to it afterwards. This way, you could check your pronunciation and compare it with the way native speakers speak. Keep practising to strive towards a more native-like pronunciation.
9.Find the language school that’s best for you
Rich resources provided in language courses save you time of having to look for learning material by yourself. Finding the right learning material that suits your language level would no longer be a concern since the language course package has done the job for you. Not to mention that you can even get the opportunity to study abroad, learning the language in the country where it is widely spoken. FluentUp provides an online platform for you to find top language schools from around the world so you can compare different language courses, identify your language level and choose the course that’s suitable for you.