Learning A New Language Can Be FREE!

Learning a new language can be as difficult or as simple as you make it. When moving abroad and not knowing a single word can make your life more than complicated. I have been asked my opinion more than once on what program I would reccomend for learning a new language, and my personal expierence is if you are trying to learn a new language you will never go far by learning it on your own and living in your home country.

I know people can learn a new language and not have to live in a region where the language is being spoken but you have to have so much contact with a certain language before you can really get the flow of it. In America we are surrounded my English, you can't drive 6 hours in one direction and find a different language being spoken. We have Spanish and as a South Florida girl for my whole life I was surrounded by Spanish and had contact with it everyday but I had no drive to learn it. So my spanish is so small you could say it is nonexistant.

Keys to REALLY learning a new language:

What almost determines how well you will be or learn a new language is your first contact with it. When I mean first contact I am not talking about the first hello and how nice that person was but rather when you start to know the basics of a language. When you know the Hello's, Thank you's, Please's, May I have's, Where is...and a few other key phrases enough where you feel like you can finally break your silence and talk to another native speaker. If you learn who to say that you are just begining learning most people will be more willing to help and tend not to be so harsh naturally. But there are moments when someone can just be rude and nasty and when that is your first time trying to speak it will pull you back into a silence and puts up a mental wall on learning. 


Reading as simple as picking up free newspaper or gossip magazines helps improve the speed of reading, and helps leaps and bounds when learning grammer. I personally think you have to find an article with more than 1 photo and which looks interesting to you and with that you will learn much more than something with no photos and something not that interesting.
When you first get into a new language it is best to have a good thick two language Wordbook, so you can look up each and every word and with pen write the word in your language over the new language and with that you will grow a very large vocabulary quickly.
Using the internet is a faster way of translating but translating whole sentences is a bad idea because it can cause more confusion and can translate it poorly. It is also good to have an actual book to carry with you and for cross refrencing.
Reading Childrens Books that you know by heart helps since you know the storys and I think most everybody can recite "Little Red Riding Hood" "Green Eggs and Ham" it actually is a great foundation.


For improving grocery vocabulary and for avoiding those awkward situations of what you thought was butter was really lard, what you think is canned food is dog or cat food. Go shopping! Go to all the grocery stores you can find. Not only will you learn where is the cheaper place to buy your food but it will help you also learn new vocabulary. If you see a carrot and there is no other sign to confuse you, it will be simple to learn. Still bring your Wordbook so you know what meats, or what cuts of meat you want and what you are looking at. When I first arrive in any country that I know I will have to learn the language the first thing I do is go to the grocery store and walk through it, to get an idea of what I could buy and to also learn what it is I am looking at. For me food is the first vocabulary that grows quickly and fast.


I don't know about everybody but I know that I personally have more than a few favorite movies. I also reccomend going to the movies, or renting a movie and watching it in your desired language. Since you can understand what is going on through the video, and or you know the movie so well you can recite the lines in the film so you can hear more of the language. It will also get your ears intuned to the flow, and how it is supposed to sound like. If you go to the movies and do not know the film before hand, word of advice when learning do not go to a movie with a lot of dialouge. Then you will really get lost, it is better to keep it kid friendly, or action packed, so talking is either more on a lower level or not much talking since there are more action.


Once you start feeling more comfortable with the language it is always best to use it all the time and as much as you can. It is also a good if you can find either a private tudor to help with speaking, or a new friend that is willing to help with practicing speaking with you. There are always classes out there to take for learning more grammer and vocabulary, but if you never actually try to put it to good use you will certainly see that you will loose it or it will never get any better but rather stagnate.

There is always Berlitz, Rosetta Stone, some Universities offer lanugage classes for beginners as well.
Another program that is totaly free for everyone and has a wide variety of languages there is Live Mocha.
Live Mocha is a site with other people trying to learn and you can also use it to practice talking in a comfortable setting and it is FREE!


For those wanting to learn German Deutsche Welle is a great website since they have up-to-date news but for people learning and also has a news radio station that has the option of a slower speed so it is easier to understand and they also will give you the vocabulary they have used. I personally use it myself, and it is FREE!
        
This blog post was inspired by blogger Sarah whose blog Move Me Abroad has great information!

Comments

  1. Hi! I only just yesterday noticed your comment on my blog. I totally ignored writing in it when I made it to Austria... and now I am back in Canada. :(

    Otherwise I would have loved to meet up in Wien!

    I will read your blog though, since my heart is still overseas...

    Also, good post! I've attempted a few languages so far (French, Spanish, German), but haven't put in a true effort. My next attempt: Finnish!

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