HOW TO LEARN A FOREIGN LANGUAGE SUCCESSFULLY?

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Sun Aug 1, 2021

Say Yes to New Adventures

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Two of the most frequent questions we get at Sam's Lingua Centre are: Can you really learn a language proficiently from scratch in a Month? And, how do I maintain and continue to improve my language skills?

The answer to the first question is ‘no'. Even kids, who are the most intuitive language learners, need years of constant practice and of making mistakes to become proficient. Admittedly, learning a language as a kid is different from learning it as an adult. However, like any other skill, such as playing the guitar, it takes years of practice: ideally about 10,000 hours to become really good at something.
So, what can you do to become successful at learning a Foreign language?

Create a routine:
Just like doing sport, it’s easier if you have a routine for learning. Set aside sometime every day, preferably at the beginning of the day, so you get it out of the way.

Learn in short intervals:
Linked to the previous principle, learn in short intervals of 20-30 minutes. A 20-30 minute routine is psychologically easier to deal with than studying a whole hour without a break.

Passion: Have fun in what you do
Motivation is the key to learning anything. One way to stay motivated is to have fun and be passionate about what you are learning. So read and listen to items that you are interested in or are relevant to you. Changing language won’t make it more interesting.

Persist and work hard:
Like anything in life, you have to persist through self-doubt and criticism. Continue working on your skill at regular intervals.

Make silly stories or associations:
The Human brain tends to remember more in terms of associations.

Be willing to make mistakes several times and possibly feel like an idiot:
Everybody makes mistakes. Learn to accept that you will make mistakes, that you may offend people when trying to master the language, but remember to learn from them without beating yourself up about making them. Nobody was born speaking perfect English – not even native speakers.

Patric Sujay
A California-based travel writer, lover of food, oceans, and nature.

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