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Learning a New Language: 9 Ways to Learn Foreign Languages

If you want to learn a foreign language, you may know that it will be no joyride. However, there are some tips and tricks that will make learning easier for you and you will be speaking a new language in no time.

Learn a new language

Learning a language… who has time for that?
You get a bonus point because you decided to learn a new language. However, this might not be enough for you to succeed. In order to achieve your goal, you may be interested in best way to learn a new language. The truth is that the people who speak several languages all have a secret and they swear by it. You may find out their secret, but chances are it won't work for you. You will have to find a method that works for you and that will keep you going.


Ways to learn a new language

1. Be motivated

2. Partner up with a friend

3. Listen

4. Start with languages close to your mother tongue

5. Talk to a native speaker

6. Find free learning material

7. Don't make excuses

8. Use mnemonics

9. Ask someone

Best Way to Learn a New Language as an Adult Speaking One Language: Tips and Tricks to Learn a New Foreign Language Even if You Are an Adult and You Thought You Could Never Do It

So how can you learn a foreign language? Here are some ideas that will get you started so you will know you are on the right track:

1. You have to be motivated

woman in cafe reading book looking out window
Define why you want to learn a new language so bad

Why are you thinking about learning a second language? You might say that you simply want to speak another language. Although this might be enough at the beginning, it won't keep you motivated for long. However, if you would like to get to know a person in their own language, that is an entirely different story. It is easier to learn a language if you know exactly why you're doing it (and in this case "just because" won't cut it). For instance, you might be thinking about going on vacation to Spain. In that case you would be motivated to learn Spanish so that you will be able to get around.
Some people are more motivated than others to learn a second or even third language, and thus put in more time studying. Make no mistake: time is required to learn a second language and there really are no shortcuts in becoming fluent in a new language. Without the time required to retain the information, you will constantly forget things you have already learned. You need time to learn and time to review vocabulary and grammar. In order to set aside enough time to learn the language you must be motivated enough to plan and effectively prioritize your time. Rome wasn't built in a day. Learning a new language is a slow and steady process and you don't start noticing the results of your work immediately.

You could be the most motivated person in the world trying to add a foreign language to your resume but without friends you might as well be talking to yourself. Who else are you going to practice on?

2. Find a friend

three friends in the middle of a field jogging together
Push each other through it

In case you have friends who share the same interests, most probably you will find someone who wishes to learn the same language. The best way to learn a language is to have someone constantly pushing you to get better. In case you have someone else who wants to learn the same language, you will challenge each other and this will keep you motivated. Even though you might not admit it, there will be some rivalry as to who will manage to learn the language faster — and this is exactly what you need. Having someone around is even more important if you are on a schedule.
Having a best friend or a partner interested in learning the same language as you motivates both of you more to learn the language because you share the same goal. You will both push each other towards that goal and it is a lot more rewarding because you will both start seeing the results in each other and the accomplishment will be something you will both remember for a long time. Memories are better when shared, and learning new language certainly is a life experience worth having and stored in your mind for the rest of your life.

A good friend will listen to whatever you have to say even though they don't know what you are talking about. Now it's your turn.

3. Listen to the language

person with backpack in foriegn land
Train your ears

If you are asking how to learn a foreign language, you have to remember that you have to interact with the language in question on a daily basis. You may have friends from foreign countries who speak that given language and you could practice with them. If this is not the case, you could listen to the radio in a particular language or watch movies in that language. In case you would like to learn French, there are numerous French movies worth to be seen in French. There is also a vast selection of French radios you could listen to.
Immersion language learning is very helpful, which is why constant exposure to listening to the language is essential in learning a new language. In order to retain the information better you must have enough practice listening and speaking in order for the language to stick with you. Otherwise all of that studying from books will go to waste because our minds work better when actively involved doing something rather than sitting all day at a desk. If you don't have the privilege of being in the country of your target language, there are many resources available to help you with your listening practice.

4. Cognates are your friends

Learning languages from scratch is quite difficult. This is why, in case you would like to learn a foreign language, you should think about those that have something in common with your mother tongue. For instance, the Romance languages have a lot in common. As an example, in the English language there are numerous words ending with "-tion". The Spanish version of this is "-cion". Aside from this, English has numerous borrowed words from other languages that will help you learn the given language. Just think of the German language. Since you already know English, learning German will be a breeze.

5. Talk to native speakers

The people who want to learn another language have to understand that there is nothing better than talking to a native speaker. This is why the majority of language schools are trying to get native speakers to teach their language. No other teacher will ever be able to speak a language like a native. You could be thinking about taking a course of this kind or simply find a native friend. You could speak to them on a daily basis without having a huge phone bill using free online programs.
There are certain nuances of any language that cannot be mastered unless learning from a native speaker that has mastered the language. Perhaps language mastery is not important to you. But imagine the possibilities of being able to speak another language so well that the native speakers of that country can't even tell you are a foreigner? The possibilities of not only learning a new language, but mastering that language, is astounding. A native speaker teaching you is the best way to take your fluency of a new language to the next level.

6. Find free resources

As it has been mentioned before, second language learning is easy if you attend a course. However, you shouldn't worry is you don't have the budget for it. There are plenty of free tools available. You just have to do a quick search on the internet and you will find thousands of hits. Searching could help you with learning foreign language. It offers a huge dictionary and it also gives the option of text-to-speech. Beginners usually find understanding written text a lot easier than understanding the spoken language.
If the resources are free and easily available, why not take advantage? There's many tools out there that can help you in your language acquisition. Many people fail to utilize even half of what's available to them, thus making their study twice more difficult than it needs to be. You don't need to pay exorbitant amounts in order to learn a language. You just need to be crafty and ask around what language resources are available in your community near you, and online.

7. Being an adult is no disadvantage

A lot of people might think that adults have a harder time learning a new language than children. Well, the truth is that, according to the research done in the field, adults are actually better at learning languages than children. When it comes to learning foreign languages, in many cases adults have an intuition or a feeling for grammar rules that children don't have. Aside from this, no study has ever proven the existence of a direct link between the skill of learning languages and age. If you say you're too old to become fluent, you are just looking for an excuse.

8. Use mnemonics

In case you are interested in how to learn another language, you should know that one of the easiest ways out there to learn a new language is through mnemonics. Although it is true that if you repeat a word many times, it will be engraved in your memory, the process is quite boring. If you want to memorize a given word, you should come up with a funny story for it. Maybe you won't always remember the word in question, but most probably you will remember the story and it will remind you of the word as well.

9. Ask someone who knows

People are your most valuable resource while learning a new language.
If there were anyone who knows how to learn a language that someone is a person who in the past was the same position as you are in now but now has acquired the language in question to a respectable level. First off, I'll just say that these people are rare to have in your inner circle; though if you just happen to know someone who's been where you stand before, just ask. You are bound to receive a helpful answer no matter what they say. Trust me; they know.

What do you get out of learning a language?

The more languages you speak, the more valuable you become as a person. One should never stop learning. Asides from this, learning languages is also good for your health; it keeps your brain "fit". Actually, learning languages for the brain is just like workout is for muscles.

By Abie Giles

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