My 8 Secrets to Learning a Language

Hello. Marhaba. Hola. Bonjour. Buongiorno. As you can see, I’m a real culture vulture and a lover of languages. If you are the same, here’s my all time top secret tips that I’ve picked up over the years.

So here we go.

Secret Number 1

Meet up with friends who speak the language! One of the hardest things when starting out in a new language is of feeling silly. Even the most extrovert of us may suddenly be overcome with a crippling shyness. Talking to friends is a fantastic way of trying out a few words in an informal way, and they are usually really excited to help. And even if they do laugh, that’s what friends are for! After all, language are all about being sociable.

Secret Number 2

Make it part of your routine. It’s so important to learn as you go, and keeping on top of vocabulay and grammar really helps. Language uses building blocks. If you can’t remember the numbers, you are going to find telling the time tough. With language, little and often really works.

Secret Number 3

Carry a little notebook of your vocabulary with you wherever you go, or take pictures on your phone. It doesn’t matter how good your grammar is, if you don’t know what any of the words mean. Language is about communication. In the metro, on the car, waiting for a friend/colleague to arrive — all these minutes can by used to get ahead and gain a few more words.

Secret Number 4

Play with the language. It’s supposed to be fun! Create post-its for around the house to label nouns, try word searches, record words/rules on your phone and play them when you go to bed. Whatever floats your boat and interests you. Make it a part of your life.

Secret Number 5

Remember that mistakes are part of learning a new language.

Better to have a go and use the language as much as possible, than hold back because you are afraid of making a mistake. Even native speakers make mistakes. It’s how we learn. If you say I goed to the cinema instead of I went to the cinema, it means you have learned that regular past verbs end in ed. Great news! Now it’s time to learn about the irregular verb patterns.

Secret Number 6

Listen up!

It’s 100% better to hear a word before you see it, so that you get the pronunciation right. Trust me, you can end up saying some very strange things otherwise. For example, Wednesday with its silent “d” is a classic example. Getting used to the way a language sounds and its stress and intonation is part of learning how to produce it yourself.

Songs and movies are both are a fantastic way to see hear and then see the language, using subtitles.

Secret Number 7

Keep it simple at first.

Learn simple words and common phrases before you start diving into grammar. Try out the language and take it for a test drive. Make sure it is the language for you and you love the way it sounds and how it makes you feel. Speaking a new language is like slipping on a new coat — you need to love it if you are going to wear it.

Secret Number 8

Make the language part of your lifestyle

We are all different people with different ways of learning and different interests. If you are into social media, then follow networks that promote languages or download language apps such as Eton Institute’s langu.ag. Try a language for free at cudoo.com, online video learning. If you love eating out, find restaurants for that culture or country and try to use a few words. If you are a news buff, then check out the online news sites in that language. You get the idea. Learn a language the way you live your life and you are going to stick with it.

So, it’s time for me to say merci, XieXie, danke, gracias, shukran and thank you for joining me for today’s session about secrets tips about earning a language. If you know of any others, please share.

What’s your next language?

Please like and share this, as I would love to get your secret tips too!