Whether you learn Spanish or another foreign language, there are several ways you can build onto what you learn in the classroom in order to optimize your language learning process.
Here are our 10 tips for language learning that have helped us and our students over the years.
- Watch series and movies in the target language. Netflix, Youtube and other streaming services are a great resource. Try to watch an episode or a movie at least twice a week, and you will see the difference. Many language schools or language learning providers offer playlists on Youtube with short lessons and learning tips. Check out our Youtube playlist for Spanish mini-classes.
- Read children’s and teen books then move onto easy adult books (order them online if your local stores don’t carry them). Keep the book somwhere you can pick it up easily. Even if you only read a few minutes a day, the key is to keep at it. Don’t look up every word while you are Reading, but rather mark them and look them up at the end so as not to interrupt continuity.
- Find someone to practice the language with (a conversation partner, someone from your class, etc).
- Read out loud! This will help you correct and practice your pronunciation, and help you internalize grammatical structures.
- Label everything in your house with post-its. This helps build vocabulary, an essential part of the language learning process.
- Speak! Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. We all sound like 4 year olds when we start, but try and laugh at your mistakes instead of getting frustrated!
- Listen to the radio (music, talk shows, podcasts, newshours… all of these help with your grasp of the language, especially your oral comprehension skills). SIgn up for a podcast you can listen to in the car or on the train every day on your way to school or work.
- Put on a song, write out the words and sing along. It works!
- Cook a food from the target country, written in the target language. This teaches both, cultural aspects and gramar/vocabulary.
- Immerse yourself in the target country. If you have the chance, travel to the country the language is spoken in, and participate in an immersion experience. This can mean taking intensive classes, staying with a local homestay family, or just renting a room from an Airbnb host that speaks the language.
You may also be interested in reading our 6 reasons why learn a language online!