homelanguage news contents

Experts Reveal Their 2 Top Tips for Learning A Language - Part 4

  • Hoppler Team
  • 30/12/1899

Mais 6 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 more of these experts' advice.

Expert #19: Raffaele Terracciano | Rafter’s Languages

1) Use content that you like. You're not going to learn a language by just reading grammar books. Read and listen to content that is highly interesting for you, and everything will be easier.

Do you like sports? Then read the news about your favourite team in your target language or watch some Youtube videos

2) Do it everyday. Every day that you use your target language is a day you get better. Every day that you don't, is a day you stagnate, or even get worse.

The only way not to lose what you have learned is to keep studying everyday, even for just 10 minutes.

Expert # 20: Jan va der Aa | Language Boost

1) Have the right motivation.

Do you have enough reasons to learn a new language. Are you motivated? Without enough motivation we tend to give up more easily.

Think about how much better your life would be if you would speak that language fluently. Would it help you in your career?

Do you want to speak a new language for social reasons? Or do you want to have better experiences living or traveling abroad? No matter what reason you have, you should at least have a few very good ones in order to stay motivated!

2) Learn the most important things first! (80:20 rule)

Learning first things first is the key to quick progress in your new language.

The Pareto principle (also known as the 80:20 rule) basically states that you get 80% of the results from 20% of the work. This principle can be applicable in language learning as well.

Languages contain hundreds of thousands of words but only a fraction of them are used on a daily basis by native speakers and only a fraction of those are words that you need for your first conversations.

Expert #21: Josh Teeters | Language Geek

1) Don't be afraid of translation. The current in-vogue advice seems to be to never translate anything, to start using monolingual dictionaries as fast as possible, etc.

I've tried both paths, and I've found translating things (particularly in both directions) to be a very helpful learning exercise.

By translating something — particularly in a very literal way — it lets you see what each and every word in your target language is doing, especially when it is functioning differently from similar words in your native tongue.

2) In the age of digital everything, don't discount the effectiveness of "old fashioned" study methods. In particular, writing things out by hand has proven to be very helpful in getting things to stick in my memory.

Research has shown there is a connection between handwriting and memory, and I've found writing vocabulary out has helped me learn it better than cramming digital flashcards

Expert #22: Gabriel Wyner | Fluent Forever

1) Focus on mastering pronunciation as early as you possibly can. It will improve your ability to remember words and it’ll minimize the amount of time you’re practicing bad pronunciation habits.

Seek out teachers to help you with this; it’s really easy to tip into an American or British accent when students outnumber teachers.

2) Make flashcards that are 100% in your target language and involve pictures. You can do this using Fill-in-the-___ Sentences, either by hand or in a program like Hoppler. Flashcard tests like these are approximately five times more efficient for memorization than simply re-reading your notes.

Expert #23: Olle Linge | Hacking Chinese

1) Focus on breadth before depth. You don’t need to know everything about a word when you first learn it. Read and listen extensively as much as possible, preferably at a comfortable level.

Output and deeper understanding comes with time. Avoid advanced stuff until you actually need if for communication.

2) Follow your passion. If you like playing games, find ways to learn languages through games. If you love music, that’s a powerful way of learning as well. Anything that makes you spend more time with the language is good.

An okay method that you use gladly every day is much better than a supposedly awesome method that you never use.

Expert #24: Randy Hunt | Yearlyglot

1) Ignore the haters. People will always judge you by their own definition of fluency. Their opinions don't matter.

All that matters is whether you can perform the function required of you in your new language.

2) Get over your pride. Make mistakes. Make a fool of yourself early and often.

Pride prevents us from using a language in which we are imperfect. But humility allows us to learn more, and sooner.

That's it from our experts. We hope you have had some great ideas how to improve. You don't have to use all the tips. Just find the ones that work for you. Good luck and good studying...


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