Learning a new language

Travel Forums General Talk Learning a new language

1. Posted by applegirl (Full Member 144 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

I want to learn Spanish and was thinking of different ways how to learn a new language...

I remember my English/German and French classes at school and how awfully uninspiring they were; an endless string of words to memorize and then the grammatical rules on top of that, sort of . This is not the way I see myself learning Spanish.

Which is the best/easiest way to learn a new language?
I guess I'm taking more about what type of learning techinques there are (rather than being told to move to Spain - I can't at the moment)

We all have different ways of learning, personally the best way for me is to listen and talk as much as possible (not so much write and read, that comes at a later stage)
So any tips about suitable courses (on cd/the web/classes...) would be greatly appreciated.

2. Posted by samsara_ (Travel Guru 5353 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

Hi Apple

Well, I think learning from a native speaker is the biggest advantage in my book (aside from actually living where the langauge is spoken for a period of time).

I'm learning Italian at the moment. When I was living in Galway, Ireland last year I was taking classes given by a young Italian guy from Milan. He insisted on talking in Italian 90% of the time - his classes were great fun...I never missed them.

I've since had to relocate and I signed up with an Italian course in my local university which was far more expensive but it not a patch on the one in Galway! it's given by an aging professor who just makes us listen to tape-recordings and watch videos...we are never given the opportunity to speak to each other....I am learning very little...and I've started to skip the classes....(the money is non-refundable as well!

So basically after that big long rant...i think if you could put up an ad locally or in a nearby university looking for someone to meet with s few times a week to practice - that's the best way! (and much less expensive!);)

3. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

I agree. Find people to talk to - it makes the whole learning process more "real" and it can certainly be interesting. At least it won't feel like you're studying for an exam!

Be diligent with yourself, too. It can be tempting to slip back into your native language, and your comfort zone, when you know the other person understands. And sometimes people switch to make it easier for you, without realizing they're taking away your opportunity to practice. Just plow on with a smile!

4. Posted by summer910 (Respected Member 1342 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

Agree with tway and samsara. If you can't find a native speaker to help you out, keep in touch with the language via films, audiocassettes, books, newspapers, etc. Check out the libraries in your area. They might have some useful stuff on brushing up your language skills.

I suck at speaking Italian now, but can still read some sections of a few Italian newspapers.

All best!

5. Posted by applegirl (Full Member 144 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

Cheers all for the tips so far ;)

I posted on another forum aswell and got the advise to look up http://www.michelthomas.com/ He seem to have a new and very interesting way of teaching (it's prob far too expensive to do his courses tho, but it's possible to buy/download lessons)
Also someone told me about BBC Language Section.

I'm going to put up ads in my local area today if someones's interested in a Spanish/English language exchange, let's say there are Spanish speaking people in my area who wants to improve their English (hopefully!) They could practise their English with me and the man and then they can teach us the basics in Spanish. I think the best thing is if both get out something of it, because thing is I have a couple of friends from South America and Spain but they're fluent in English and I know just how easy it will be to fall back into talking English with them. On the other hand when I know some, it would be excellent to practice with them.

Good luck with learning (remembering) Italian!

6. Posted by NiuMei84 (Full Member 113 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

I started studying spanish in college 4 weeks ago and it's pretty easy language to learn I must say!And + if you are motivated and interested about it then you'll learn it even faster!I just love that language and I'm excited to go to spain someday and try my skills.;)