Here are some tips for learning languages! I really think that these help me remember and put my knowledge to practice!!
1. Immerse yourself. Know the culture really well! Don’t let others calling you a “weeb” or “otaku” get in the way. I know it may be discouraging, but you’ve got to understand their culture to really understand what you’re learning! There are going to be different onomatopoeia words, conversational slang, words of endearment, etc. You’re not going to understand it through the textbook. Rather, you’ll only understand it through hearing it and understanding it. Witness the culture. - Watch movies/dramas/commercials in that language. - Read books in that language. - Listen to music. - Read conversations. (Huh? Refer to Step 7.) - Last but not least, travel there!
2. (If there is a different script) Practice the alphabet! If you know how to read the language, you will be able to pick up on pronunciations. Knowing how to speak properly is vital to your language learning, as you can only get better this way. Listen to conversations and try to imitate the way they speak, the inflections they add, etc. If they roll their “r” and you cannot, practice and substitute. Lots of people will add a soft “d” sound to their words where a rolled “r” is. Try it! (I can roll my “r” so I don’t know exactly how to do this without actually rolling my “r” lol.) Reading allows you to learn much more vocabulary (if you look it up). This is great for conversation!
3. Speak. Huh? How do you do that if no one speaks it around you? Speak with yourself, literally. If you’re doing something, going somewhere, or thinking something, try translating your actions in that language.Narrate everything you’re going in your language! This way, if you stumble on a word, you can look it up and use it in your sentence. You learn more vocabulary this way and also get familiar with the sentence structure and the grammar. If you speak to a pet, speak it in your learning language. Or just have a conversation with yourself. Stand in front of the mirror and pretend that you’re talking to someone. Answer any questions you ask the mirror you so you get comfortable with hearing the answers.
4. Practice. Regular practice is how you get better. Read a word, define words, write them, and say them out loud. This is the best way to remember what you’re learning. Associating sounds with pictures (alphabet) and vice versa is the best way to remember, and practice is the only way you can do this. If you’re sitting on the bus or have idle time, think about what you learned and recap everything you know so far. Reviewing your already learned knowledge is also a way of practice. Practice with others, if you have co-learners or people who already know that certain language.
5. Listen. Listen to the language. This is not in movies or dramas, but in regular youtube videos of interviews. Look for “interviews in ____” and listen to the ways they talk. Search for conversational videos and listen. You can learn the formal and informal ways of speech and any slang. 6. Download audio. I have mp3 of lessons that I listen to. I literally learn on the go. If you travel, if you’re sitting with headphones in, start listening to the lesson. Most lessons will repeat the word/phrase/concept more than once, so you usually remember the topic quickly. This is just like being in a class! Take notes if you can so you can go back to them.
7. Read conversations. What the hell does this mean!? Type in “conversation transcripts in ____” and you will often get conversations with the sentences underneath that you can read along to. FIRST, listen to it without reading it and try to understand as much as you can. THEN, read the text, but keep the audio off. Anything you might have missed from the audio will stick out. LASTLY, listen and read. This will match sounds with the words, which will make you remember so much easier! Reading conversations will get you better at understanding and speaking!
8. Share your knowledge. If you can teach it, you definitely know it! Share what you know with people who are curious. Explain the basics and translate everything, making sure you are 100% correct. Or you can resort to explaining to yourself, which is just as good! Explain what you have learned and go through any exceptions! 9. Keep track. Keeping track of what you have learned will let REVIEW be easier. You will be much more motivated when you see how much you have progressed. Tracking your knowledge will remind you of how much more you have to learn, too. Knowing what you know and knowing what you don’t know are really important! You can learn much more faster this way! Use notebooks, blogs (like these) or little cards! - Separate what you have learned by topic. (Colours, grammar, etc.) - Keep track of phrases based on formality so that you can differentiate where to use what. - Alphabets that you learn should be a separate category! Especially for languages with lots and lots of letters/characters!
That’s about it! I’ve gotten lots of questions on how I’m good at languages, so I wanted to share what makes me better! Happy studying and good luck!
hey here’s something a little different! these are…covers? medley covers?? the products of me haphazardly riffing on the gravity falls OST using character leitmotifs as bases??? you tell me!!!! all i know is i had a good time putting them together