Just shut your eyes for a minute and imagine you can speak one other language fluently. You can order a meal, discover your way around town, go into business conferences, and reply questions on the job interview, all in a language that is not your mother tongue. A wonderful thought and it definitely would be wonderful if that would happen overnight or in our ‘minute of dreaming’. However as the saying goes, ‘It takes years to turn out to be an overnight success’. Maybe not years in the case of language learning however it just wants a little hard work, practice and dedication.
Once you have been or three years old, you soaked up language. You heard an necessary word like ‘Mum’ or ‘Dad’ or higher nonetheless ‘tractor’ or ‘cat’ and you liked or beloved these things so much that you needed their attention and therefore you labelled them and tried to say the word as greatest you could. Different individuals strengthened this for you by repeating it so many instances that you simply lastly ‘obtained it’. The human need for food and drink meant that language was vital for survival. You had to study ‘milk’ and ‘dinner’ etc. quite than just cry! The need to be cherished, to have consideration, to outlive provided the perfect motivation to be taught a language. So the place does that leave us poor adults? You could have to improve your English, for example, so as to ‘survive’ in your new posting in Europe or you’ll begin a course at university in Britain or America. Ask yourself, how much do I want this and why do I would like the language?
Firstly, the most important factor is motivation, just as our 12 months old was motivated to learn the word ‘cat’, because they needed to stroke the cat, you must want this language, because you need to reach out to the world. Write down the three most necessary motivating factors for you, keep them safe and if you find yourself finding your learning hard, take them out and remind your self of your reasons. Simple, however it works!
Secondly, make the learning enjoyable for yourself. If it is going to be a bore and a slog you’ll always discover an excuse to do something else instead. There are all sorts of strategies: write down your new words on ‘Post it’ stickers and dot them round your room, ‘label’ your furniture and objects within the room, jot down new words on scraps of paper with the interpretation on the back and drop them in a box and from time to time empty the box and test yourself, document yourself on your mobile and play it back, watch films within the language or put the subtitles on, listen to songs… music is a great way of getting linking words to memory.
Thirdly, get your self some structure and in language learning terms this means grammar and it doesn’t must be frightening. Grammar is just a series of patterns which permits you fit words into sentences. Newbies in English usually begin with the verb ‘to be’ within the present tense: write it out, chant it over to your self, and set it a tune or rhythm. Set yourself an goal of one new grammar level a week.
With these three strategies in mind, you might be halfway there already. You have to organisational skills and practice and of course loads more learning tips. I will probably be adding to the ideas and tips each week that can assist you build up a bank of great ideas. Remember – observe makes perfect.
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