7 Simple Tips to Learn a New Language

Language learning has a huge number of benefits from improved concentration and memory to improved problem-solving skills. However, learning a new language is not easy and you may be confused as to where to start. Whether you want to learn for work, travel or simple curiosity it is essential to start on the right path with a good plan.

One of the key aspects of an effective plan is to make sure that your goals are realistic from the start and that they are aligned with your attitude so that you can maintain the same effort and consistency throughout.

Don't waste too much time looking for that perfect way to learn when real progress is made by putting in consistent effort over a long period of time. And with time and consistent effort, you will gradually find what works best for you anyway. This article will provide you with seven simple tips to learn a new language.

1. Decide What Motivates You

Staying motivated is not easy after starting a task. However, if you know the purpose of doing a particular task, then the motivation to stay on track will come from within. You have to ask yourself and be clear with the purpose behind learning a language.

You may want to learn a language to help ascend the ladder of a career. You may want to work as an interpreter. You may want to learn a language in order to understand a culture or just to get out of your comfort zone. Whatever the reason is, be clear and honest with yourself.

2. Make Language Learning a Lifestyle

If you want to master a language, then it is important to practice it consistently. Hence, you need to grow the habit of practicing a language regularly and habit is made of three components.

  • Cue: It sets a behavior into action. For example, you may set daily reminders for a task using an alarm or an online calendar.
  • Routine: This is your behavior in response to the cue. You have to develop an easy routine in the beginning in order to avoid failure, such as practicing a few words from the last lesson or opening a language app. It is easier to follow such routines and you may end up longing for more than the initial tasks.
  • Reward: It is important to reward yourself once you develop and follow a routine. This will work as positive reinforcement and increases the possibility of success. You may reward yourself with a treat or you may feel rewarded already after seeing progress.

3. What is Your Method of Learning?

If you want to stay motivated when learning a language, then you have to find the right method based on your unique needs or demands. You also have to pay attention to the choice of content.

Possible methods of learning a language

  • Visual content will be better if you are visually driven.
  • Podcasts will be good if you can learn whilst listening to audio.
  • You may focus on the written word if you enjoy reading.
  • You can benefit most from the training of a language coach if you enjoy conversation.

It is important to choose topics that you enjoy or listen to in your native language otherwise you will lose motivation.

4. Learn the Technique to Memorize the Right Words

If you do not want to forget a newly learned language, then the following tips will help you.

  • Learn Cognates

Cognates are words with a common etymological origin. Hence, they will sound similar to the words in your native language. For example, the word ‘gratitud’ in Spanish sounds similar to the word ‘gratitude’ in English and also has a similar meaning.

  • Learn Commonly Used Words

In every language, smaller sets of words make up the majority of the spoken language. It is easier to remember 2000-3000 commonly used words instead of memorizing 50,000 words. You will remember more words over the years with practice.

  • Learn Relevant Words

You have to focus on the topics that are related to your personal or professional life or the topics that interest you. It is easier to remember the words that you use in your life.

  • Create Flashcards

You may create numerous flashcards using the vocabulary from your lessons. It is an effective way to memorize words. You may even use a ‘flashcard’ app that uses spaced repetition.

  • Carry Notebook

It is helpful if you carry a notebook in order to write down the recently learnt words. Many research-based studies have established that the ability to recall improves with writing, as it is slower than typing and requires a higher level of mental processing.

5. Use All Available Free Resources

These days, you can access numerous resources over the internet to learn a language. When selecting a reading resource, you have to select a material that is one level above your skill level. Audio resources (radio or podcasts) are ideal for individuals with an intermediate or higher level of skill. Video resources can be suitable for all levels. Listening to international news can be helpful as the newsreaders often have a clear accent.

Additional Read

Learning a language – 10 things you need to know

6. Practices with People!

It is essential to converse with other people (preferably with a native speaker) if you want to be a fluent speaker and you have three options available.

  • You can meet with a native speaker at a language exchange meeting that is arranged via a website. In such meetings, both participants have to help one another in learning their native language.
  • You may join in group classes. In this scenario, you have to wait for your turn to start a conversation.
  • You can take 1-on-1 lessons from a native tutor. This type of learning option may be costlier than the aforementioned options.

7. Immersion

The most effective way to learn is by spending time in a foreign country surrounded by native speakers. Taking language classes in a language school and living with a local family or other students is highly effective. Whether it is a short fun 1 week holiday taken once a year or an extended multi-city multi-school language travel experience.

Ready to learn a new language?

Linguistr connects learners with tutors and schools near and far. We also organize language travel experiences. Explore our language learning courses and enrol yourself to learn the language you need.

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