Wondering how to learn a language fast without the need for expensive courses and language learning programs? There really are no secrets or shortcuts – you just have to be committed to the new language, willing to work hard, and not be afraid of making mistakes. In this article, we will tell you how to learn a new language to help you.
Tips For Learning a New Language
- Connect with a native speaker of the language that you want to learn.
Without a doubt, the best way to learn a new language is to speak it. Sometimes, people spend all of their time studying grammar and memorizing word lists rather than going out and putting what they’ve learned into practice. Talking to a real and lively person will motivate you to learn more than you look at a book or computer screen.
Try to find a friend or colleague who speaks the language you want to learn and who is willing to sit down and practice with you. Alternatively, you can post in local newspapers or forums to find someone to teach you or exchange languages.
If you can’t find someone speaking your language nearby, try contacting someone on Skype. People in foreign countries are usually willing to speak their mother tongue for half an hour, compared to half an hour of Turkish.
- Study the language you want to learn every day
People often claim that they have studied a language for “five years” but are still not fluent. But by five years, they probably mean that they only studied language for a few hours a week all that time. Let’s get one thing straight – if you want to learn a new language quickly – that is, within a few weeks or months – you have to devote a few hours each day to studying it.
Language learning is based on repetition – it means scratching something into your brain over and over again until you remember it. If you put too long between study sessions, you will be more likely to forget what you learned last and waste valuable study time by going back to what you have learned before.
You can reduce this wasted time by working every day. There are no miraculous shortcuts when it comes to language learning – you just need to be committed.
- Always have a dictionary with you.
Carrying a dictionary with you will save you time and frustration, so get a dictionary as soon as possible!
This fact can be a physical dictionary or a dictionary app on your phone – the important thing is that you can quickly refer to the word whenever you need it.
Carrying a dictionary allows you to quickly find the word you need. This is especially important when conversing with a native speaker of the language you want to learn when you have trouble remembering a word and don’t want to disrupt the flow of the conversation. Also, finding a word in a dictionary and immediately using it in a sentence will help you write that word into your memory.
You can also review the dictionary at random moments during the day – waiting in line at the grocery store, taking a coffee break at work, or waiting in traffic. By doing this, you can learn 20 or 30 extra words a day.
- Watch movies, listen songs, read books and write in your chosen language
Immersion means doing all the activities you normally do in your native language, be it reading, writing or listening, in your new language.
Probably the easiest thing you can do is to watch TV shows or movies in the language you’re trying to learn. Try not to use subtitles as they will tend to rely on them. To make things even easier, try to watch programs or movies with which you are familiar with the plot, such as dubbed versions of Turkish movies or cartoons watched by children. Knowing the subject will help you solve words and expressions. You should also try to read and write in your new language. Try to read an article every day by grabbing a newspaper or magazine and looking at words you don’t understand in a dictionary. You should also try writing a few simple things in your new language – be it a fake postcard or a shopping list.
Download Podcasts or listen to radio channels in your new language. This is a great way to soak while you’re on the go. This not only helps you understand what you are listening to, but also allows you to hear the correct pronunciation of common words and phrases. Change the language option of all your electronic devices to learn the words that you know Turkish but don’t know their equivalent in the new language.
Listen to the songs in that language. Find out the lyrics and see what they mean. That way, the next time you hear the phrases in the song, you can understand what the conversation is about.
- Visit a country where your chosen language is spoken.
Obviously, going to a country where your new language is used and spending some time there greatly increases your language learning ability.
Force yourself to contact the locals – whether by asking for an address, paying in a store, or simply saying hello – and you’ll have a new perspective on that language and its speakers.
No matter how simple your verbal skills are, as you push yourself to speak, you’ll soon see a tremendous improvement in your vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation.
- Don’t worry too much about grammar.
The reason most people spend their years forgetting almost all of the language they learn in school is because the school curriculum tends to spend too much time on grammar learning and too little time. It’s actually supposed to be the other way around – if you want to learn a language fast, you have to learn how to speak first. Features of grammar will come later.
The importance of grammar is undeniable – you need to learn how to conjugate basic verbs used daily and have some idea of the correct sequence of words in a sentence.
The point is that you shouldn’t spend hours memorizing verb tables or worry about the specific conditions required to use a particular preposition. You will learn these as you progress.
- Practice pronunciation.
Another area where you should focus your energy is pronunciation. There’s no point in memorizing hundreds of words and phrases if you pronounce the words too strange to understand. That’s why it’s important to learn a new word and learn its pronunciation at the same time.
Learning pronunciation from a book can be difficult – chatting with native speakers (or using interactive software programs and apps) is just here. To learn the correct pronunciation of the word, you have to say it out loud.
If you’re practicing with a real person, make sure you don’t hesitate to correct you when you mispronounce a word or you may never learn it fully. Remember – pronunciation can be the difference between speaking a language well and speaking a language fluently.
- Don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
When learning a new language, you shouldn’t be afraid of making mistakes or you won’t go too far.
It is inevitable that you will find yourself in a few embarrassing situations, but what is there to grow? Native speakers may chuckle, but they will still appreciate your effort and try to help.
You are not aiming for perfection here, you are aiming for progress. Making mistakes (and learning from them) will help you move forward.
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