4 Ways to Make Language Learning Easier and Faster
Language learning nowadays is more important than ever. Traveling, international business, a foreign partner, ancestral roots, or simply sheer curiosity are among many reasons why we decide to learn languages.
But when you start, especially when it is a very different language from your own, you notice that it is not easy and you realize it can take a lot of time to get fluent.
Here are my few tips on how to make language learning more pleasant, easier and faster, and how to tackle issues you can possibly encounter while studying a foreign language, some places to learn online, and a lot more.
1. True Interest and Motivation
The first and most important thing is to have enough motivation. You need to truly feel interested in the language you are planning to study. Even if you know all the reasons for learning a certain language, unless you have the inner drive for your chosen language, the process of language learning will be long, strenuous, the knowledge you acquire may be forgotten more easily and the progress lost.
Believe it or not, it is indeed true that you do not choose which languages are more interesting to you. For example, one language may sound interesting and beautiful to you, which can make you attracted to it and naturally interested to learn it, while others might not.
This is not to say that if you, for example, wish to learn a language that you know will be useful for your travels, but to which you do not feel attracted to naturally, it does not mean you should not learn it. You can learn to like it by listening to it more, practicing it more, until you get used to the way this language works.
If there is no drive, you cannot really learn a language, so it is important to stay motivated. Further down below you will see how to find the needed motivation.
2. Learning and a Lot of Practice
This is another extremely important part of learning a language. Once you have the motivation and desire, you need to devote the needed hours in order to reach your desired proficiency level. The more you wish to advance in a language, the more time you need to invest into learning and practicing.
While you may already know this, I still cannot continue without reminding about getting a proper textbook to assist you through the rules. Additionally, get an exercise book to put the learned rules into practice. Always have a dictionary so you can learn new words. These are important for learning vocabulary and grammar, which is what you need in every language.
If you cannot learn on your own, find a teacher who can help you, but remember that no matter how many teachers try to help you, if you do not have true desire, their assistance would not be of much use. So, if you have the needed desire, their help would be a great addition. If you do not wish to go and take courses in your local area, you can simply find tutors online, such as on Italki. Here you can get lessons from native tutors from around the world.
How to find motivation when it sounds like there is so much work to be done in order to acquire a skill such as knowing a foreign language?
The next step will show you how to both find the needed motivation, while practicing and learning faster.
3. Having Fun
Finding motivation is important for learning a language. But it is sometimes easy to lose it, especially when you see difficulties and no matter how hard you try, you just cannot memorize something or learn the logic of a grammatical rule. Have you thought that you probably cannot learn because it is not interesting and your brain does not wish to take in the information you are forcing yourself to learn? May be it is time to make your studying more fun.
Entertainment will make learning more pleasurable, faster and less exhausting. This will also increase your motivation naturally, which, as previously mentioned, is the beginning and most essential part.
Having fun means different things to different people. Some enjoy playing language games, others watch foreign movies in their native languages, there are those who simply prefer to stick with reading just from their language textbooks and attend their courses, even if this is not considered very fun by most of us.
I personally believe it is most beneficial mixing different learning methods. While I cannot go without textbooks that thoroughly explain language rules, it is always better to add some fun to it. For example, this can happen by listening to music in the language that I am learning, or making friends with natives and practicing with them.
There are so many fun ways to learn a language. Another method is watching foreign YouTube channels of topics you are interested in, while the videos being spoken in the language you are aiming to learn. Think about your hobbies or interests in your personal life and search content on YouTube that aligns with what you like. You can both learn more about your topic of interest, while simultaneously learning a new language.
A very popular platform you probably already knew about is Duolingo. It uses games as a way to help you learn and it has a wide variety of languages. It is great for learning the basics of a language and there are many rewards to keep you motivated.
At the end, these are just my ideas, but you are the one who knows best about what activities make your learning more enjoyable. If you do not know them yet, test out the above mentioned ideas and even if nothing works to spark your interest for language learning, be creative and you will soon discover that learning language can be quite a pleasurable activity.
4. Speaking With Natives
Trying to speak with natives is one of the best ways to learn. It is also probably one of the most exciting parts of learning a new language. This is a great way to combine both learning and practicing in real situations at the same time. Native speakers will show you the most correct way of speaking, even if they themselves do not fully understand why their languages work the way they do. They can even help you with learning slang local to their region, which even your teacher might not know.
If you have the desire to practice, but you have no friends or people in your local area that speak the language you wish to learn, you can find language exchange partners online. This is free and very beneficial as well. They can teach you the basics of a language if you are starting from zero. I use Conversation Exchange where I help people learn English and Bulgarian. In exchange, they help me learn their languages. There is a very wide variety of languages to choose from, which is one of the benefits of using this website. There are other websites such as, My Language Exchange or Interpals that you could also test out.
Learning a language is something that takes time, devotion and continual practice. There is no way you can learn a language in one day or instantly.
The purpose of writing this article is not to reveal to you a secret trick of how to magically learn a language on the moment but, rather, to give you ideas that you can possibly use to make your language learning more enjoyable and easy.
It is important to test a variety of different methods of language learning and to see which one works for you personally. Remember that we are individuals who learn differently from one another. What works for one may not work for you and vice versa. So try a variety of methods to learn your desired language.
© 2019 Tory Peta