Learning A New Language – Ideas And Methods To Help You Succeed

Most people are capable of successfully learning a new language. Most can accomplish this process in a reasonable period of time, especially if learning with an effective method. Although it is true that a few people may not be as skilled as they wish when learning a new idiom, a good method and a strong commitment can generally result in the successful acquisition of this new language. It is important to note that successful methods differ from person to person. What works well for one particular individual may not work as well for another. Each student must experiment with alternate approaches until one discovers what works best personally.

The goal of this article is to suggest ideas and methods that will put students of any new language on the road to success. Good luck!

Tip 1. Increase your interest in learning the language.

Positive interest is the most effective motivation when learning a new language. Reflect back on your first time learning to ride a bike, swimming, or playing a new computer game. We learned these skills because they were interesting to us. We believed we would have fun engaging in them and we were interested in the results and benefits of acquiring these new skills. Even though we may have met difficulties, skinned our knees, or swallowed a bit of water from the swimming pool (yuck!), we continued to practice, trying our best to conquer any difficulties. When something holds the promise of being interesting and enjoyable, we devote ourselves to overcome any obstacles in our way. We might have fallen off our bicycle and scraped our knees, but we still got back on the bike and kept on pedaling. Perhaps, the most important aspect of learning a new language is sustaining your interest and keeping the experience enjoyable. The following tips will assist you in discovering techniques to ensure learning a new language is an agreeable and successful process.

Embrace the culture of the language

If you simply attempt to memorize the vocabulary of a new language without understanding its context, the learning experience will soon prove to be a dry and boring undertaking. Most who simply study the new language’s vocabulary fail to reach their goal.

We gain an understanding of the new language and the people who speak it by incorporating anecdotes from their culture and manner of speaking. This understanding not only retains our interest, but also provides a deeper level of appreciation of the people who use the new language.

Incorporating culture into language studies heightens our interest along with expanding our own cultural knowledge.


Everybody loves music, despite its many different classifications. Find the type of music you like in the new language you are trying to learn. Take one song you really like, listen to it, and then study it until you understand it thoroughly. Going over a list of words is boring, but we all love to sing our favorite songs. Learn to sing your new song. When accompanied by people of most cultures, it is amazing how many opportunities there are to sing. People will be impressed that you took the time and the interest to learn some songs in their language. Being able to sing a song or two in another language is a great way to make friends. And is not that making friends and getting to know people a large part of what learning a new language is all about? If a new friend compliments you on your new song, you will be encouraged to learn another. Your language skills will thus continue to progress.


What types of movies do you like? Action? Romance? Comedy? Pick a DVD you like and watch it. Consider the body language and the facial expressions you see while you are watching. What happens in a movie is usually never based in reality, but the body language, the expressions, and the way they talk represent the language’s typical culture. The movie “Terminator” was all fiction, but its catch phrase, “I’ll be back”, is certainly part of everyday life.


Many people also find the television (TV) entertaining. Watching a foreign program may prove a better fit for some people when learning a new language. There is a wide variety of shows available in many languages. Often, the serial nature of some programs makes the experience more interesting because we can become involved and immersed in the characters and ongoing story lines. TV shows usually mirror real life situations. Certainly, TV shows can provide excellent examples of daily life in a culture, and can thus become accurate tools for studying and understanding a new language. With many TV series now available on DVD, we can watch any episode repeatedly until we understand it thoroughly.

Internet Chat Rooms

The Internet is a great instrument towards improving new language skills. Take something you are truly interested in – movies, music, stamp collecting, science fiction books – whatever it may be. Then look for a chat room in your new language populated by people with similar interests. Tell the members you are learning their language and that if you “say” something linguistically incorrect to please let you know. Then, start chatting.

Books for Young Readers

This idea may be a bit different but has worked for some people. Find books for young readers in your new language and practice reading. These books have the benefit of being fairly simple in their language level, yet interesting in story lines. They are often written with the aim of improving the reading skills of their young audience in mind.

Comic Books

Similar to books for young readers, comic books provide alternative methods towards increasing your knowledge of the new language. They usually have a language level target for learners, pictures to help explain the story line, and a story that helps retain interest.


There are numerous alternate methods to assist in learning retention. The key is finding activities that appeal to you and integrating your learning of the new language into these activities.

Tip 2. Accept that you will make mistakes.

It is natural to make mistakes during the course of learning. In a language course, it is the mode of communication itself that is the focus of instruction. For this reason, a language course differs from other courses. Not understanding and committing mistakes – things that are negative learning indicators in other courses – are a very natural part of the language-learning process. Accept the fact that you will not understand everything. In fact, at the very beginning, prepare not to understand much at all.

Remember that during the initial period of adaptation, your ear and your mind are adjusting to the sounds and the rhythm of the language. Although you will not understand all of what is being said, you will be amazed at your increasing ability to make sense of the language. The only way to learn the language is through practice, practice, and more practice. Again, during the course of practicing, you will make many errors – and you will learn from them. Just correct them and keep going.


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