Today, proficiency in other languages is a real-world skill that opens up a world of job opportunities and helps you travel with comfort and confidence. It’s a process that improves your memory and makes you more open-minded. There are many great reasons to learn a new language no matter your age, but a lot of people just don’t know how to start.
While learning a new language takes time, patience, and a lot of practice, it’s not impossible. You just need to follow the right tips so you can stay motivated and organized.
The following tips will help you start learning a foreign language and keep your learning process in the right direction.
9 Useful Tips To Learn A New Language
Hard work, practice, and effort are essential when learning a new language. But, the whole process can be a lot easier and faster if you follow the right tips. After all, it’s the journey that matters, not the destination.
Start With Simple, Realistic Goals
How to learn a new language from scratch? Well, you need to start by setting small, attainable goals. This will prevent you from feeling overwhelmed and help you focus and get down to business.
Your goals should be short-term and specific at the beginning so you can easily accomplish them. This will keep you motivated to set more goals and continue learning the language.
For example, your goal can be learning 20 to 40 new words this week to achieve fluency in business English. The first number makes the goal realistic, while the second one helps you to push yourself.
Learn Common Words And Phrases
Knowing the most common words and phrases in your target language will help you start making basic conversations. Picking the words and phrases to learn first can be difficult, so we’ve gathered the ones that will provide you with a jumping point for communication:
- My name is/I am/ What’s your name?
- Please/Thank you/ Thanks
- I don’t speak your language well
- Excuse me/I’m sorry/Sorry
- Can you please repeat that?
- I need help/Help
- Where’s the bathroom/restroom?
- How much is…?
Of course, you can change or add phrases based on your needs and preferences. Include ones you think you’d need or want to use more. Making your own vocabulary or phrase list will help you build your understanding in the everyday setting and start your learning language journey on the right track.
Immerse Yourself In The New Language
The more surrounded you are by your target language, the more you’ll engage with it. Even though the best option is to travel to a country that speaks the language you want to learn, thanks to the internet and technology, there are other options as well.
You can watch movies, videos, or TV series in the language you’re learning. This way, you’ll improve your listening comprehension, boost your vocabulary, and have fun while you learn.
You can also listen to radio or podcasts on a topic of your interest. Listening to music is a fun way to learn words and common expressions. Reading the news in the language you’re learning can be a great way to increase your knowledge of the country and culture that speaks your target language. You can also read books, magazines, comic books, and forums in that language.
Playing a video game in your target language, especially online multiplayer games will give you a chance to play and communicate with native players.
Using these immersion strategies will help you learn a second language effectively a lot faster than you’ve imagined.
You may know hundreds of words and phrases and all the grammar rules in a foreign language, but they won’t matter if you don’t use them. Although writing and reading are important aspects of learning a language, speaking is essential if you want to achieve fluency.
Therefore, try to make speaking part of your daily life. You can imitate the speech you’re listening to, find the lyrics of your favorite songs and sing along, find a language-learning buddy, and the most important of all – talk to a native speaker. Hence the need for 1-on-1 lessons online with a native tutor.
One-On-One Language Tutoring Online
Today, there are many great language learning platforms that will help you find the right online tutor for your language skills and needs. One-on-one lessons online with a native speaker or certified private tutor will help you pick up the language faster and easier.
Connecting with them gives you a chance to speak naturally every day, get feedback, boost your confidence, immerse yourself in the foreign language and culture, and get expert help when needed.
You can choose an online tutor based on your needs and budget and take lessons at a time that’s convenient for you. The private tutor will adjust the lessons according to your language skills and goals and help you to achieve them effectively.
Have Fun With It
Try to think of a creative way to use the new language. It can be drawing a comic strip, writing a poem, making a radio play with a friend, or talking to your family even if they don’t understand the language.
This way, you get to practice everything you’ve learned and have fun with it.
Flashcards are incredibly useful when learning a foreign language. They help you to memorize new words and test your knowledge. You can use both paper and electronic flashcards, but the latter gives you a chance to carry hundreds of them on your phone and practice anywhere.
Planning to test yourself is an effective way to motivate yourself to learn better and faster. You can do this by taking various online tests or playing online games. After a few months or a year of actively learning a new language, take a standardized test to prove your language level to yourself and potential employers.
Don’t Focus On Your Mistakes
The fear of making mistakes is one of the biggest barriers to speaking or using another language. You have to understand that making mistakes is part of the learning process. Instead of focusing on them, just be aware of them. That will help you learn from your mistakes without affecting your confidence.
Remember, a native speaker doesn’t bother your grammar or pronunciation mistakes, as long as they understand what you’re trying to say. They will appreciate your effort and even if they do correct you, it’ll be only to help you.
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