5 fun ways to learn a new language

  • January 28, 2016 / Queenie Kawabe / 0 Comment

We always dream of communicating seamlessly with locals during the trip or impressing our friends with newfound lifelong skills. However, most of the time, we often caught up with work and life plans get shelved. After all, it is just a dream.

Learning a new language can be horrifying, especially Japanese or Mandarin(Chinese). You were told that Japanese and Mandarin(Chinese) are ranked to be the hardest language to learn in the world due to the fact of memorising the thousands of characters and a complex writing system.

From a teaching perspective, I have to agree to that but the truth is, language learning shouldn’t be a chore. There are many fun ways to learn a new language and you have to change your mindset not to be terrified by the fact.

If you are approaching in a new fun way, here’s my 5 guides for you to learn a new language in a fun and effective way.

  • Listening to podcast. I’ve often told my busy and mature students to listen to podcasts when they are travelling or driving because they spend most of their time in the car or on the plane. The fact that podcasts are free and valuable, and you can download them in your IPhone and listen to them whenever you like. In addition to that, it helps you to build up your listening skills, and it opens your eyes to the sound of the language, though you can’t speak the language yet.
  • Watching movies. I love movies and I personally learn 4 languages with movies because it entertains me and I understood better how real Japanese and Mandarin (Chinese) is spoken. With this method, you will not end up sounding like a robot like those who only listen to audio-lessons, but speaking it fluently. You can always switch on the subtitles to help you while you are watching it.
  • Using language apps. I encourage my students to use language apps to learn a new language or practice their vocabulary because you learn better while you are playing. So, put down your books if you are not a book person. You can experience the better learning “fun” during the game. Some people learn better through fun, take online games as an example, playing an online game is just another way of learning. The fact is the apps are free to start off, so you can play it before purchase them in your phone.
  • Going to Karaoke. We all love music. If you love to sing in your language, try karaoke! I remembered a friend of mine spoke no Chinese, but she sang in Chinese when we were in the karaoke. So, don’t let embarrassment stop you from having fun and learning with a group of friends at the karaoke session. Besides, gong to karaoke is one of the outing we do during the weekdays or the weekends.
  • Visiting and travelling throughout China, Taiwan, Japan or South East Asia. I love travelling and I think it is absolutely fun and a spectacular experience to go backpacking through Asia. We know English is an international language, but most locals don’t speak English even if they knew, they are too shy or too busy to respond to you. However, if you speak their language, they feel warmed.

Never, ever stop learning and don’t be terrified by the fact. The moment you stop believing in yourself, the language died too. A small change in a day is good enough, so be consistent in your language learning adventure!

I believe in you, you can do it!

Happy Learning Chinese & Japanese, and leave a comment below and let me know – what other fun ways to learn a new language or you have been using it since you started? 

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