Practical Tips: Language Learning
We’re back with another exciting episode of PRACTICAL TIPS, the fantastic educational series where we take a quick look at helping you reach your fullest potential! Today we’re talking about all the ways you can improve your language learning abilities.
It All Comes Down to Practice
Let’s be real: learning a language is no easy task. It’s something that takes a lot of concentration and willpower to achieve. Nevermind fluency, but getting to a proficient level in any language besides your native one is an incredible feat. That’s why we’re going through some proven strategies to help you learn faster! Let’s begin.
A really awesome method you can try is using audio, text, and recordings all at once! Listen to a segment in another language while reading along. Then, record yourself saying the segment and play it back. This method of specialized reading helps you get a feel for how to speak and hear the language!
Language is all about communication; the sooner you start conversing with others, the faster you’ll learn! So, one of the best things you can do after you learn the language basics is to spark a conversation. Even if you don’t have a partner to practice with, you can always talk to yourself in the mirror! Though this isn’t as good as a native speaker or tutor who can help you along the way, any practice is good practice!
Movies with closed captions on
Part of learning a language involves immersing yourself in the native culture. Media is an exceptionally important facet of any culture, and it’ll teach you things in your target language that textbooks just can’t. Think of all the slang we use in music and TV shows that someone might not understand without proper context. Not only that, but learning the cadence of a language is equally important. It answers the question: how do people converse in real life? YouTube is an amazing resource for this too!
Join / start a meetup group
Who says you need to go to a foreign country to immerse yourself in a language and culture? There’s plenty of culture around you, if you know where to look. The internet has in many ways changed the way we communicate; there are dozens of meetup groups that will bolster your language abilities, even if you aren’t abroad! If you don’t live in a highly populated area, why not join or start meetup groups online? With video services, fostering a community is easier than ever!
As we said before, the internet is changing the way we communicate. That means apps like Tandem and FactSumo are bringing language learning right to your smartphone. The traditional methods of classrooms and tutors are still viable, but when no one has the time after work to attend class, they turn to apps! Find a language partner, brush up on basic language skills, and study all in one place! We’d list specific apps for you, but it can vary depending on the language you’re trying to learn.
Break Words Down
Phonetics is a super useful aspect to learning any language. This methodological approach breaks words down to their core elements and sounds. This tactic is especially useful in languages that use compounds to form words, like German. It’s also great for languages that use characters, like Japanese, as some characters will give you clues to the meaning of the word or phrase. Guess what? This even works in English, as all words have some sort of root or origin. Many learners choose to make up a story associated with the roots, so they are better able to remember a tricky word!
Similar to breaking words down, over-pronunciation is a good way to remember certain words you’re struggling with. Here’s how it works: stretch the syllables of a word so it sounds like you’re saying it sarcastically or in a dramatic fashion. Every time the word comes up in your study, say it in a ridiculous and over-the-top accent. That way, you’ll find yourself remembering the word not for its meaning, but for the way you’re saying it! This is also useful for words that you find are difficult to pronounce.
Everything is Better by Practicing with FactSumo
What’s better than learning through FactSumo? Our customized decks mean you can learn the basics at your own pace! These are just a few tips to help you on your way to master a language. We here at FactSumo believe in the potential of everyone! Join us next time on our series PRACTICAL TIPS for great ways to continue your learning path and achieve your goals!