2016: The year to learn a new language for free
January 20, 2016
Made some New Year’s resolutions that you are starting to wish you hadn’t? Losing motivation during the cold and dark January days? Running out of podcasts to keep you entertained on the commute to work?
Why not make a change, turn things around and set yourself the goal of learning a new language for free in 2016!
Here are a few quick tips on how you can get started:
• Download language learning podcasts for beginners to learn the basics. You can listen to them when you’re at the gym, commuting to and from work, during your lunchbreak – anytime you like! There are so many to choose from you will be able to swap and switch between them to find the one most suited to you.
• Make the most of the many free language lessons available online. These can also prove useful for keeping you occupied during the winter months when you are more inclined to stay inside and save money.
• Download an international radio app, do some research on popular radio stations in the desired language, one perhaps that plays your favourite kind of music, and get involved. Getting used to listening to the language often will allow you to pick out words and learn popular phrases within no time.
• Join meetup groups in your area with other bilingual people. Make friends with natives and plan further tandem language dates.
• Watch your favourite films and series in the language you wish to learn – with subtitles at first if needed, then without.
• Follow famous figures or celebrities on social media who post in the desired language. This is a good way of keeping up to date with current affairs in the target culture and you’ll get used to seeing the written language on a daily (or even more frequent) basis.
• Download a local news app and make the effort to read through the headlines once a day. Even if the language is too complex at first, after a while you’ll be able to pick up more than you think.
• Choose some traditional recipes in the target language and have a go at cooking them (maybe best to use a dictionary here!). In doing so you’ll learn the vocabulary for typical ingredients and cooking methods, while experiencing a taste of the culture at the same time.
• Plan a summer holiday to your target language destination and set yourself the goal of having a decent conversation with a local once you’re there. With something so nice to look forward to you are less likely to give up half way through the year.
So what are you waiting for? Set yourself the challenge, be vocal about it so you’re less likely to quit and maybe rope in a friend to do it with you for moral support. You’ll be surprised what you can achieve and how much you can learn in a short amount of time, and best of all, it’s free!
Louise, Senior Project Manager, Verboo