If you want to learn a foreign language fast in a self-taught way, but with no experience in the field, or having experienced linguistic failures in the past. This article is not a language course or a miracle recipe, but rather a guide to guide the reader in the right direction by teaching him the basics that will help him to get the best results possible.
but before we start this article you can read our post about time management from here, be sure this will help you to learn a foreign language fast.
As Dr. Samuel Johnson has stated, “language is the dress of thought.” Indeed, languages, from the cradle of humanity, have served us to communicate, to interact, to exchange, to evolve. They allowed us to express our emotions, our desires, our needs, our ambitions, our dreams, our philosophy, our values, our beliefs, our fears, our thoughts.
The language has opened doors to cultures and peoples. The human brain is the only one of all living beings to possess the faculty of speaking. It has developed to understand and to repeat, the intricate grammatical patterns of languages.
Today, learning a foreign language is seen as an achievement, as a complicated achievement to reach and reserved only for talented people in the field.
The false beliefs and myths that surround the subject discourage more than one, preventing them from going to meet themselves and discover the feeling of accomplishment, pride in this “feat”, but especially in the face of new encounters, to new friends that languages allow to know. The key is to know the steps to follow and effective ways to learn.
Before all things, it is essential to be well prepared mentally, to reset our way of thinking and apprehending the learning of a language. To do this, we will begin by talking about the prerequisites. Carefully read all that follows, because the following points are the necessary ingredients to have in hand throughout the learning process.
The success of your learning depends directly on how you think about it. If you are convinced that it will be long, monotonous, and painful, you will likely have a bad time. On the other hand, if you believe your learning will be interesting motivating, and comfortable, this one will prove much more likely to be enjoyable. Learning by your self is very different from the method used in schools around the world. Do not rely on your bad past experiences.
As an adult, it would be much more difficult and time-consuming to learn a foreign language than if I were a child
You must have heard this statement many times, well that you have come to believe it. Studies have been done on the subject and have shown that an adult learns faster than the child (Krashen, Long, and Scarcella, 1979). Where the child would be even having an advantage over the adult will be at the level of the pronunciation. The child will be able to reach a level of pronunciation closer to a native accent much more quickly than an adult.
However, the focus is far from being the most important thing to speak a language. Proper pronunciation is much more essential than a native accent.
I have no talent in language learning, so I will never succeed.
If talent were needed to learn a language, many people would not speak at all. Most human beings on our planet can communicate in their mother tongue, without having any particular aptitude. What people should reconsider is that having their mother tongue will have taken longer than it will take to learn a second.
It is useless to learn a foreign language, especially you considering living your entire life in your native country.
To learn a language is not only to learn to express your self differently, but it is also to be able to talk with new people, to immerse yourself in the culture of another country, to enrich your information. Moreover, according to several researches, the knowledge of two or more languages prevents several diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. Other studies have shown that the acquisition of a second language improves the mental abilities of human beings.
All the languages of the world are as complicated as each other to learn.
Not all languages are as easy or difficult to learn as each other. It all depends on the native language of the learner. The languages of the world are divided into several families. Each language will share several characteristics (grammar, vocabulary, morphology, pronunciation, etc.) with the languages that are part of the same set, for example, the French word “apprentissage”. It is closer to his Spanish translation “aprendizaje” than his English counterpart, “Learning.” It will, therefore, be easier for a unilingual francophone to learn Spanish or Italian than to learn Russian for example.
It is not possible to learn more than one language at a time.
It is quite possible to learn several languages simultaneously. The disadvantage is that it requires much more time, and it can sometimes be difficult not to confuse languages at the beginning of learning. Many polyglots advise, either learn them one at a time or have acquired some knowledge of a first language before starting a new one.
The motivation of an individual about an activity will have a significant impact on the success of the process. The decision to learn a language must be born out of a desire on your part. You must identify the reasons for this decision and remember it throughout your learning. Maybe you’ll need that language at work, or plan a trip somewhere. Do you own the family that speaks this language? Your girlfriend, does she talk about that language? Or do you show an interest in foreign languages? The reasons are numerous.
However, you must transform this desire to learn in need. You will have to study every day, to progress as quickly as possible. Just as eating and drinking are necessary for your survival, you will have to consider this new activity as a vital need. Your motivation is directly proportional to your success.
You will need to set short-term goals. It is useless to aim for the final result. Instead, it is better to divide it into smaller challenges such as;
- Go to a restaurant and order your food in the language you are learning.
- Chat with a native every week
- Finish the first chapter of a particular book within two weeks
- Learn the most vocabulary related to cinema in 15 minutes.
- Be able to write a text about yourself within one month.
- Watch a movie in the language studied each week.
So use your imagination. In this way, you are much more likely to pass these exams so that you can improve faster.
Time to learn a foreign language fast
It must be admitted, learn a foreign language fast requires time and involvement. Many people live a busy life where time is running out. However, without noticing it, they waste daily amounts of time that can sometimes be spread over several hours. These are minutes here and minutes that they let slip. Here is a list of times when most people waste time they could use.
- When traveling to work, school, supermarket, dog walking, jogging every day, rather than listening to music, why not listen to radio programs in the language that you study, or why not listen to music in the language itself. During traffic jams, enjoy them, they will look much less frustrating in the future!
- When you wait at the doctor, at the entrance of a bar, or when you wait for the bus
- Watch less TV in the evening, or rather, listen to it in the language you are studying.
- You could get up about thirty minutes early in the morning or go to sleep a little later in the evening.
It’s up to you to pay attention to all those little moments you could benefit from, rather than waste them doing nothing. It is essential to invest between 30 minutes and one hour a day, every day. Try never to “skip” a day under any circumstances. If some days are more busy than usual and you only have, say, 5 minutes of free time in your day, use them! Five minutes as little as it seems will always be better than nothing at all.
The choice of the language
The choice of the language studied is a crucial step in learning. A wrong choice can very quickly result from a failure. It is, therefore, necessary to decide the language studied according to various specific criteria for our situation.
Motivation and Interest
It is essential to the first approaches that the chosen language moves some interest in you. Ask yourself if the culture of this language attracts you, if this language amuses you, benefits you. If you decide to start learning a language of negligible interest to you, likely, you never get to the end.
You will need to determine in what contexts and how you will use the language. In some countries, such as the southern United States, although the national language is English, there is a strong Spanish-speaking presence. For an American, it might be useful to learn this language. Perhaps you have a German girlfriend or boyfriend with whom you can practice frequently.
Some languages are more accessible than others. Some have great literature, very vast music, a significantly developed cinema. For languages such as English, Spanish, German, or Japanese, it is easy to find a wide range of varied resources. However, some less-studied languages will require more research to find materials and resources to study them. In general, the availability of content will be a consequence of the population.
Depending on your mother tongue, some languages will be simpler and faster to master. French is one of the Romance languages. Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, or Catalan. For a unilingual Francophone, it will be easier to learn.
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