What are some good tips for learning a new language?

Not that I am very fluent and really not a polyglot, but this is the procedure that I used: I get the Pimsleur audio language course for the target language on CD ROM and install it in my car. I fixed the player so that it came on whenever the ignition was on. I repeated the target language words, phrases, and sentences OUT LOUD!

It was about a 40 minute drive to and from work. I did not listen to news or music on this drive, just Pimsleur program. And, of course I repeated everything out loud. I am sure, in slow traffic, the people in the next car thought I was some sort of a nut.

There was a night school for my target language being taught nearby so I signed up. Due to my use of the audio program, I found I was one of the better students, even among those whose grandparents spoke the target language.

If the target language is available on the internet, such as Duolingo, use it.

Try to practice the language at every opportunity. In my case, for some languages it means eating at an ethnic restaurant. If you have a friend or neighbor who speaks the language, try to do so with him.

Anytime I see someone who I think might speak one of the languages that I have studied, I am not afraid to go up to them and at least see if I know their language. I have done this while shopping, at the gym where I work out, and even while standing in line at the DMV.

Good luck!


I originally wrote my 13 tips for Learning French but they apply to any language:

Gruff Davies's answer to What are the best ways to learn foreign languages?

They turned out to be very popular - the article in various forms has been sharing more than a million times now so I guess they work!

Hope that's useful.


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