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How Much Time?

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(Photo credit: bigpresh)

When we talk about how much time you spend on learning foreign language, we may need to look into your schedule. How did you manage your learning schedule? 30 minutes of reading per day? 1 hour of speaking per day? Do you think that you have done much to be better? In fact, you need more than that to excel in the language.

If you say that you attend 1 month of Spanish class at school that does not really mean you have learned Spanish for 1 month. Perhaps, it could be just 8 hours of learning if your class is 2 hours per week and there are 4 weeks in a month.

Methods

One of my methods to learn languages is by "living" in it. I imagine myself living in the country where the language is spoken, which means that I could get frequent contact with the language.

Three of many activities that you can do in the foreign language are as the following:

1. Watch online TV

Don't need to care too much or feel bad to yourself if you cannot understand much while watching. Just sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. You would, at least, pick up the accent or word emphasis by listening. Moreover, you could also learn the facial expression while saying a phrase.

In Watch Listen Online article, I recap a list of online TV of various languages. If you cannot find the language you want or you want to try more languages, go to one of my favorite websites, Internet TV.

2. Learn another language 

The more language that you know, the easier it could be to learn another language. Languages have been evolving around this world for thousands of years, influencing each other, and growing as our society changes. You can find several similar languages in Language Groups article to help you choose another language based on the similarities.

If you have a sufficient level in a language, you might want to use it to learn another language to maintain or improve its level. In Learn in a Foreign Language article, I wrote about using my first foreign language, English, to learn languages through reading and writing. Another article, Learn a Foreign Language in a Foreign Language is about how I use my third and fourth foreign languages to learn more languages. This language-crossing activity is quite fun!

3. Use language websites and apps

There are many language websites and apps. If you use smartphone or tablets, download the apps so you can use it while waiting for public transportation. Use your time efficiently.

Most of the websites and apps are created to be as interesting as possible to capture the users' attention and to engage with them more. So, it is common to see language learning through games.

In 3 Websites That Make Language Learning More Fun article, I wrote about 3 of my most favorite website and you can find more resources about podcast, video channels, etc. in Language Learning Links article.

No Internet, No Problem

You might say that you do not have much time surfing on the Internet. That would not be a problem. In fact, I get tired of using Internet too. What about people who live in a country where the Internet connection is still slow? We cannot rely too much on the Internet although it has made our language learning way easier than before.

1. Read free stuffs

The solution is reading in foreign language. I like reading and I read a lot! 

Where to get the book?

I usually search on Google for PDF file with the keyword "X filetype:pdf", where X is what you want to read. It is not necessary to be a book, it could be brochure too. The point is you can have a learning material that you can print out or use without the Internet. Another way is to find the downloadable magazine from ISSUU, one of my favorite websites.

If necessary, prepare a dictionary to help yourself while reading so you can enrich your vocabulary at the same time.

2. Join language group

It is a good idea to join language group around you, however, the availability of the language is sometimes limited to only popular languages, such as English, French, or Spanish. So, I find it less effective if the language that you are learning is not available.


I know that there are many ways to learn languages. What work for me might work or might not work for you. The key here is to spend your time as often as possible with the language.

Hopefully you find my article useful and share it if you like this article. Together we create a better world through foreign language learning. Leave a comment if you have any opinions or send me a private message. Subscribe this blog if you enjoyed reading it.

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