Σάββατο, 10 Νοεμβρίου 2012

Staying Motivated While Learning a New Language

Learning a new language takes a lot of time and patience. Some people are wired to pick up languages quickly, but for the rest of us, it can take years or more to really feel confident in a new language. Unfortunately, most people want to learn a new language in a matter of weeks or months, and when it doesn’t happen, they give up.

You have to keep yourself motivated by setting realistic goals
and making sure that language learning stays fun,
and doesn’t start feeling like work.  

So how do you make the most out of the learning process and prevent failure? You have to keep yourself motivated by setting realistic goals and making sure that language learning stays fun, and doesn’t start feeling like work.


Setting Goals and having fun

Most people set the goal to “become fluent in a year”. While this might work if you move to a country where you’re forced to speak the language daily, most people aren’t immersed in their new language and therefore, a goal like this is almost certainly setting you up for failure.

Instead of setting such a huge, vague goal, try setting more specific, shorter term goals. For example, create a list of at least 20-30 new verbs and/or vocab words and set a goal to spend 10-15 minutes reviewing them daily with the ultimate goal to memorize them by the end of the week. Then once you’ve memorized them, add 10-20 more words to list. Keep adding and reviewing and before you know it, you’ll know 100s of new verbs!

Another manageable goal would be to read a chapter a day or week from a children’s book. Since we are currently learning French, we have been reading The Petit Prince. You can read it here in French or Spanish or you can order a copy in your new language! Then when you finish, re-read the book, but read it two or three chapters at a time. You’ll be impressed with how much easier it is the second time around.
Keeping it fun

We’ve all had moments (or weeks) during language learning when we feel overwhelmed and aggravated. Unfortunately learning a new language is going to be difficult at times, but keeping the process light and fun can help avoid a lot of frustration. Instead of just trying to plow through flashcards or vocab lists, incorporate pictures and mnemonic devices into your studying to break up the monotony and give yourself something fun to associate with words and phrases. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather see a picture of a horse or a coffee cup instead of plain old words. Google Images is great for finding pictures, or you can even bust out some colored pencils and create your own language learning masterpiece!

Another way I like to keep myself invested and interested is by creating sentences on my own. Instead of only studying the phrases and paragraphs in your textbook or workbook, try using your new words and concepts to make your own sentences. The best part about creating your own sentences? Your Great Aunt Gertrude can be the new subject, or even your dog or cat! You’ll also be forced to think critically, while staying focused and invested in the topic.

So what do you think? Do you have any fun tips for keeping language learning fun and interesting? If so, let us know in the comments! Thanks for reading and happy language learning!

http://blog.conversational.ly/staying-motivated-learning-language-setting-goals-fun/#comment-2

Would you like to have an italian online private lesson for free? E-mail info@italianonline.gr to schedule your free trial.
Μου φάνηκε...