Learning a foreign language can be one of the most rewarding things that you can do. Just the thought of speaking and conversing with a person in a completely different language can seem next to impossible however it is completely possible with a little hard work, dedication and a little motivation to see it through.
There are always points in any language learning process where it all seems hopeless and that nothing is going in. However, just by following these three steps you will be well on your way to enjoying having another language under your belt.
Travel there and immerse yourself
They say that the best way to learn a language is by actually spending time in a place where that language is spoken and really immersing yourself with the local people and the local culture. Just being around the language that you are learning for hours at a time is the best way for you to be surrounding yourself with the sounds of the language and to build up the vocabulary for your chosen language.
If you have chosen Italy for example why not arrange for your next holiday to be somewhere over there? If you have more than a couple of weeks you may even fancy signing yourself up for a language course. Where you can go to a school for a couple of hours in the morning and then spend the rest of the day exploring and putting your new language skills to go use.
A balanced learning approach
One reason why a lot of people start learning a language, only for it to dwindle off over the weeks until it is a completely abandoned project, is because they don’t create a language learning program with enough diversity or that is fun enough. Just buying one language book and going through it page by page is just not going to cut the mustard.
Lots of people strive to improve English by listening to TV series, films, podcasts and local radio stations. We should learn from this technique and try to find movies and radio stations in our chosen language where we can surround ourselves with the sound of the language for a least a couple of hours a week.
Mix it up
The best way to approach learning a language is to create a varied, interesting and stimulating learning programme. You will want to find the learning techniques that you really enjoy that will make you want to really stick at it.
That might be by combining an interactive learning programme on your computer, with learning five new words a day and writing two shorts articles each week. Or that might be by setting yourself the goal of watching 2 movies, in your chosen language a week or reading a very simple book and studying the language alongside a grammar book.
Or perhaps it might even be finding someone of that nationality in your local area and meeting that person to exchange language skills for a coffee or two a week.
Final words on learning a foreign language
The point is is that everyone is motivated by different ways of learning so find the combination of ways that you enjoy the most to ensure you stick to it and enjoying the rewarding feeling of building up your knowledge of a foreign language.
46 thoughts on “Learning a foreign language in 3 steps”
Audio books, DVDs and flash cards are great! And so much is free online. I have a post about using audio books, for example.
Always with a majuscule pleasance. I’m trying to study German on my ain and am trying to bump some movies, TV shows, cartoons, etc.
Wishing you all the best in learning a foreign language! Yes, popular culture mediums, such as TV, is a great way to learn common ways of speaking.
Great post! I’m trying to learn German on my own and am trying to find some movies, TV shows, cartoons, etc. to watch. However, would you recommend watching with subtitles or none? I have heard arguments for both, but not sure which way to go.
Personally, subtitles help me. I am a visual learner though so that could be why. It depends on your learning habits. I wish you all the best with your German studies!
Since I’m just starting the language, I think I’ll try both and see which helps me the most. Thanks for the reply!
Sounds like a great plan :)
You should read my latest post about learning a new language while doing your hobby!
Thank you Christy! Hope yours will also be fine. ;-) Michael
Always with a great pleasure. Thx for the informative postings, and have a nice sunday. ;-) Michael
Nice info !!
Thanks for taking time at these posts!
Another helpful thought is that when abroad, use Google to translate – signs, questions, etc. Good way to learn.:) xx
Interesting post. I started four years ago with French. I’m using apps and books, and can now hold conversations in German and French, and just about get by in Russian. I think diversity is the key.
Great tips…. watching TV and series in a second foreign language does help a lot… I watch Netflix in English with English subtitles, which is a good strategy as you listen & read at the same time…. Duolingo is a wonderful app when you want to learn from zero, I´d say… Sending love xxoo ;)
You are a prime example of learning another language so well, Aqui! I started with Duolingo for learning Spanish and need to get back to it. Wonderful to see you back, sweetie :) I feel the love and send mine to you xo
Thank you my lovely!!!!! <3 So glad to talk with you again! xxoo
Me too, me too!! <3
Conversing in a second language is exhilarating! As a Canadian, I knew this from a young age. Spanish was my next wonderment.
Whatever languages one chooses to learn, the true teacher and reality, is being in a country of that language. After all, we all need to go to the bathroom, need to know how much something costs and need to know where the train is.
Really useful indeed. Thanks for sharing
I want to learn Japanese really bad this could definitely help
I really like to pick up a bit more Spanish having recently been to Salou, and returning soon. I wonder if I can use these tips and learn enough within 28 days..? :)
Ohhhh I say go for it :D
Learning languages is so difficult for me! I agree with mixing it up so it remains interesting!
Just nominated you for the Liebster award. Details on the blog :)
Being in the country long enough to listen to the people speaking it was helpful to me when I accompanied my husband to Germany for several years. I still love the sound of German and can catch meanings. Speaking it is a whole different ball game.
I have a few friends who speak German (family roots) and wish I knew more of it. Thanks for sharing your memories, sweet Ina
Thanks for liking my post nice one at least am not wasting my time you like thanku
thank you so much dear Kristy for sharing very interessant post
I rally I wish I could
I’ve tried learning French a few times – at school and since. I think immersion is probably the best way to learn.
Perfect approach! :D You get an A+ from me ;)
Very useful post. I followed these steps when I learnt foreign languages. A very strong determination is needed because this process is very challenging time-consuming and sometimes boring. Furthermore, the beginning is marked with failures. Although you make small steps towards the goal, you can experience your overwhelming shortcomings when wanting to structure a sentence. But at the end it is very rewarding.
Yes and your comment reminds me that at the start of learning most things we experience failures (which are really learning experiences). Great comment!
Every new day, learn a new word. Long and tedious it may sound but the days add up and before you know it, you have an entire vocabulary.
Another tip, I chat to my German friend. I try and add one word to the conversation. Its empowering and fun too… if we err, we can be corrected and have a good laugh as well!
I am very fluent in that I can swear and order a drink in several languages but that is it….
Haha Shey ;) You’re also fluent in hamstah-vocabulary!
Good points and ideas, Christy! Would mind learning another language!
Cool! If you could learn any language, which one would you choose, Syl?
French, sound interesting. How about you?
Great! I’d choose Spanish :)
Ooh, that’s a good choice 🙂
:) and more :)
Learning a new language is a challenge . I found this post to be very useful.:)
As usual informative. You are doing great job. Thanks
Oh I wish I could!