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Experts Reveal Their 2 Top Tips for Learning A Language - Part 1

  • Hoppler Team
  • 30/12/1899

Especialistas revelam as dicas mais importantes para aprender uma língua
(texto em inglês)


But mastering another language can open up a lot of opportunities. You can communicate with more people, learn about other cultures, and be exposed to job opportunities that were previously unavailable.

So how do you tackle such a large project from the start?

We asked for help from the top language experts in the world, who have mastered not just one other language, but several other world languages.

These polyglots have studied and mastered different languages from different language groups. They have been language beginners many times over and understand how intimidating and difficult learning a new language can be.

So, they graciously offered up their top two most valuable tips to help you learn a new language.

The following are 6 of these experts' advice.

Expert #1: Simon Ager| Omniglot

1) Don't worry about not understanding everything - try and guess the things you don't know from context, and ask about or look up words that come up frequently whose meaning you can't work out.

2) Try to use whatever language you know, without worrying about mistakes or looking foolish - play with the language, learn from your mistakes, and have fun.

Expert #2: Olly Richards | I Will Teach You A Language

1) The first thing to realise when taking on a new language is that regular, consistent study over time is the key to getting results. You'll go through periods where you lose motivation, or struggle to find the time to work on your language, and that's completely normal.
What's important is you stay consistent with your study, and try to carve out some time every single day. Stick with it, and time will do most of the work for you!

2) Secondly, don't wait too long before starting to speak with people in your new language. It's normal to feel apprehensive about speaking when you're still a relative beginner.

However, it's important to realise that you get good at speaking by speaking - not by waiting until you're ready, because that day never comes. Find a language partner or tutor - locally or online - and schedule regular sessions. I find 3-4 times a week is ideal.

By speaking regularly, you'll quickly build confidence, and that will catapult your progress forward!

Expert #3: Teddy Nee | Nee’s Language Blog

1) Learn phrases that you frequently use.

If you take a look at all language learning books, you will find many similar phrases, such as "How are you?", "Where is the station?", "I want a cup of coffee, please".

However, do you really use those phrases in your real life? I suggest you to learn ONLY phrases that you frequently use. In this way, you can start to have conversation at the very early stage of your learning journey.

I suggest you to learn the following first: the 6W1H (What, Why, Where, Who, When, Which, How) phrases, basic tenses (past, present, future), grammatical structure (SVO or SOV or VOS or others), numbers, day and time, frequently-use verbs, and pronouns (I, you, we, my, your, him, them, etc.)

2) Use the language as often as possible.

You may have heard the saying that living in the place where the language is spoken is best for your learning. The idea is that you will hear the target language every day, and probably, use it actively occasionally.

But this method has limitation, what if you don't have the time and money to move to other cities/ countries? Let me suggest you what you can do at your comfort and your own learning pace. It is best if you do these as often as possible.

a. Read articles and check dictionaries (this method improves your vocabulary and learn how a word is used in a sentence)

b. Listen radios/ TVs (it's best to listen to dialogues than songs, unless you want to learn to sing, because if you want to be able to talk, then learn how people talk)

c. Talk to anyone in any possible opportunity (because language is for communication).

Expert #4: John Fotheringham | Language Mastery

1) Define your "why" first. Similar to what Nietzsche said, with a strong enough why, a language learner can endure almost any how.

Why do you want to learn? How do you want to use the language? How will it improve your life?

2) Spend most of your time in the language, not learning about the language. We acquire languages at a subconscious level when we get sufficient input and practice.

This means actively listening to authentic content and communicating with native speakers as much as possible.

Expert #5: Kris Broholm | Actual Fluency


When you start, your mind will constantly doubt itself whether what you're about to say is correct, whether you even know the words or not. It's IMPERATIVE at these practical occasions to simply let loose and ignore that internal doubt.

Don't try to prepare a script internally for every sentence (that's not how we speak our native language.) instead simply use what you know, or find a way to speak around it. Don't wait for perfection! It might never happen.

Note: This is extremely difficult, but if you consider that all your fellow course participants are in the exact same boat, and you're doing it to learn languages it becomes somewhat easier. Don't worry if you make a mistake either, just shrug it off and keep going.

2) Trust the process and have fun!

Middlebury is a world-class language school, and you will definitely learn a lot if you just let go of your worries and trust the process.

Don't try to force yourself to remember things, or spend all evening running through flashcards.

If you speak and practice the language at every opportunity, and follow the excellent programme laid out, you will be successful, I have no doubt.

But, most importantly; Have fun!

Expert #6: Emily Liedel | The Babel Times

1) When you’re learning a new language, fall in love with both the language and the culture that speaks it.

2) Then create as many opportunities as possible to speak the language and interact with native speakers.

More next time. If you have someting to add, leave a commment below


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