Learning a new language may be an overwhelming process. However, there are steps you can follow to make the whole experience easier.
Many motivations drive people to learn foreign languages. Some want to learn it for fun because they love the way of life associated with the people who speak that language. Some people have job opportunities that they need to take up in new territories, and they have to learn their language to find it easy to interact with the natives.
Whatever, the intentions you have in learning the language, the goal is that you want to grasp as much content as possible within the shortest time available to you. Learning a language that you are unfamiliar with from scratch is an idea that most people fear. You have to do several things:
- Learning the basics
- Getting the meaning of familiar words
- Constructing simple sentences
- Learning more vocabularies to spice your speech
The whole process does not have to be that hard. There are strategies that you can apply to make the whole learning process manageable and meaningful:
Have a Roadmap of What You Intend to Achieve
You cannot just learn blindly. You need to have the learning objectives. Have a proper record of the language objectives that you intend to achieve after a specific period. There is no way you can tell how much ground you have covered if you did not have goals in the first place.
Languages are complex, and there are different words, phrases, and sentences that you need to learn. However, you cannot understand them all at once. When you set goals, you know what to deal with within a given time limit. When you set measurable language goals, it is easier for you to achieve them and end up as a language expert with consistent learning.
As you set the goals, your main agenda should be on the specific concepts you intend to learn rather than the amount of time you intend to use. Remember that you aim to learn a language and not to make time move. For instance, your specific goals can be to acquire 30 vocabularies associated with games in French. However, do not put pressure on yourself. Pick on a goal that you can manage to achieve adequate effort. That way, you learn and motivate yourself to move on to the next language goal.
Evaluate Your Progress
Assess if you are achieving your goals or not. Where you find that you have achieved your goal for the week, set a bigger goal next time. If you fail to meet the objective, you have to look at strategies that can help you learn better. However, do not be too hard on yourself. Reward yourself where you note that there is progress. For example, if you have an interest in learning the Hmong language, you can use translate.com/English-Hmong to speed up your learning process. When translating, it would be a direct practice on how to read and write in Hmong. It would be less stressful compared to listening and speaking. Furthermore, you will get to expand your Hmong vocabulary and improve spelling.
Use the Right Language Learning Method
There are cases where your memory may fail you in the process of learning a new language. However, that can only happen if you take long before you learn again. For instance, if you learn once a week, you may forget what you learned the previous week as you proceed to the current one. Practice speaking the language daily to learn more quickly.
Begin with Familiar Words
Some words may have a similar meaning to a language that you already know. For example, a word like “Paraiso,” which is Spanish is the same in meaning with “Paradise” in English. Since such words are easier to memorize, you can start with them. Additionally, they give you the motivation to begin learning other words.
Learn the Common Words
In every language, you find that there are thousands of words that can be used. However, not all these words are used in daily conversations. As a learner, you need to prioritize on the words that are useful in normal conversations. For example, a person learning English should begin focusing on normal day words used in greeting and borrowing things rather than the vocabularies used in engineering. After you have learned the basics and you are confident of how to use them’ you can then move on to the other complicated vocabularies.
Focus on Relevant Words
After you know the basics, it is now advisable to focus on words that are specific to the field that you are interested in. For a person taking up a job as a doctor intends to take a job in a hospital job in a foreign country, the focus should be on how they call the common hospital tools such as beds, syringes, needles and the diseases depending on your specialization
Note and Use Vocabularies You Come Across
When you are exposed to a language, there are those vocabularies that you may come across in the process of interaction that may not be familiar to you. The trick is to note them down, find their meaning, and try to use them in conversations. With time, you know how to use them effectively.
Use Every Opportunity to Speak the Language
If you can get access to the native speakers of the language, converse with them. You can meet face-to-face or talk through applications such as Skype. You can also listen to audios and learn how specific words are pronounced.
Opting for a group learning experience is a good idea. Here, you have the opportunity to talk to people who are also learning. As you interact, you discover that there are things they know that you were unaware of. It becomes an opportunity to share.
When you apply these tips, your chances of comprehending the target language are enhanced. Moreover, it becomes easier to understand vocabularies. With time, you can begin speaking as if you are a native speaker.