There is no shortcut to learn and master a language. It takes many years to learn a real language. The good news is that in much less time, you can gain conversational fluency. Fluency in speech or conversation means the ability to communicate about everyday things at regular conversational length with a native speaker.
In this post, we will explain how you can learn a language faster than others. Follow these tips and principles to learn a language at a much faster pace than you are doing it already.
Make a daily habit of learning
People complain that they cannot learn a language because it’s too hard, and they are not excelling in this learning process. The biggest reason for the failure, in fact, is that people do not regularly learn the language.
You have to build daily routines to achieve consistency. Habits are essential to behavior change because you don’t need to count on desire or encouragement when you adopt them. There are three main components to a habit: a reminder, a routine, and a return.
The reminder triggers the action. We recommend that you just use daily reminders in your online calendar for language learning. The routine is what you do in response to the reminder. Make it easy when you start – like to open your language app or to replay your previous language lesson for five times. Those routines might not sound good, but you will almost not miss, because they are so simple, and eventually, you want to do much more than your initial mission. Ultimately, somehow reward yourself for increasing your chance of success with positive reinforcement. It may mean treating yourself to something, but that is enough to strengthen the habit for people to notice their progress.
To make progress, you only need 15 minutes a day. For example, during your everyday travel, you can use technology to revise or listen to international podcasts. So stop excusing and begin to build some daily routines.
Learn the vocabulary first
The most common reason people give about learning languages is that they have a terrible memory. The question, however, is less about their mind and more about their approach to learning something.
Cognates are words that, in another language, are almost precisely the same. Learn them. In Spanish, for example, gratitude is the same as in English. There are many languages that have shared words with English. Lists of these cognates are readily available online. You can see a difference in pronunciation, so check it with an online service and learn the right pronunciation too.
Learn the words that are most often used. Usually, you need to know at least 50,000 words to attain fluency natively in any language. But you need only 2000 words to get the conversational fluency.
Since there are a minority of words that make up most of the spoken language in all languages, however, when you speak and listen to the language, you will also come across them automatically. Write down and learn the words you use, while avoiding the sophisticated words that you often don’t use. Learn the spellings in different ways. For example, play word games, or fill in the blanks, flip words and use backward text generator to make things experimental.
Learn the words you are interested in. Do this by focusing on issues that are of your concern or that happen in your daily life. These may be linked to your leisure activity or job. By focusing on the correct vocabulary, you can use words in real life more often. Also, these words can be easier to remember.
Use free resources to learn a language
Without going to a country where they speak your target language, learning that language has never been simpler. It is because you are now able to access tons of free language learning resources online. Using them to dive into the language each day.
You should preferably use language tools which are only one step above your level. Resources are regarded as comprehensible input at this point in linguistics. Simply put: this means that anything you read or hear you should be able to understand. You should not be in the comfort zone, but you should just learn enough language to understand and perceive a new language.
When you have an intermediate level, at least, Podcasts and radio are fine, but TV and movies are preferred in the beginning. The pictures provide the context for the interpretation of the language. We will suggest you watch international movies and TV shows mainly. News presenters talk really plainly, so you’re going to get a better interpretation of the language.
The good thing with podcasts and radio is that you can listen while you’re traveling. If you’re a novice, you can hear Podcasts, for example, Radio Sweden has a super-daily podcast to learn Swedish, where they talk softly and provide transcripts too.
Start speaking right now
You need only access to the internet to develop reading and listening skills, as stated in the last section. On the other hand, communicating with another human being is always a better practice.
You might read this section if you are a beginner, but don’t wait a few months to start speaking. Trying to speak a new language takes confidence. But you should start practicing on the first day if your goal is to talk at a conversational level. You will improve faster if you make more mistakes. You should also talk to yourself in the new language you are learning. This technique will give you the maximum benefit in achieving fluency in conversation.
Enjoy the journey of language learning
We emphasized earlier why it is always vital to concentrate on conversational fluency rather than fluency at the native level. Because it is everything needed by most people and can be achieved in only 12 months by immersive learning. Either 12 months or longer, it will be a path that needs constant inspiration, if you want to reach conversational fluency.
Individuals all too often abandon the learning of a language as they read dull texts and seek to focus on their will to continue. You cannot rely on willingness alone for language learning. You should be enjoying the process of learning a language to keep it going. You just want to practice every day if you have fun.
We hope this guide will benefit you. Start building certain regular activities related to language learning. Every day, you should know that your goal is near, but you also enjoy the journey. Consider talking with a native speaker via Skype if you are serious about improving your conversational fluency in any language.