I always enjoyed languages and decided that I wanted to learn to speak German. Most people chose French but I wanted to be different. German language classes at school are never that fun. At the time it seemed like hard work to learn completely new words and a completely new way of constructing sentences. When I was learning how to converse in my native language, English, we were not taught the rules or grammatical terms. All these new terms had to be learned to understand how languages work. After doing my exams at school, I decided that I wanted to study the German language at the degree level. I knew that the best way to learn how to speak German was to visit the country.
I arranged through a specialist agency to live and work as an au pair (like a live-in nanny). I lived with a German family who had 3 children. I had no choice but to speak German as the children were young and spoke no English. I was paid a nominal sum and the family paid for me to take German lessons. I went to a foreign language school every day for 4 hours where I learned the correct grammatical terms and extended my German vocabulary. I returned home to the family and put into practice what I had gained from the course. According to professional authors from essay writing help service, if you want to learn how to speak German the best way to learn the language is to live in Germany, take German language lessons and read and listen to as much German as you can. This is the conclusion that I have come to during my personal experiences of learning German.
Tip 1: Find a Native Speaker
At first, find a person who is a native speaker. If it is not possible at the moment, you can always search for a tutor who will talk to you a couple of times a week. It’s pretty easy to find tutors with affordable rates for weekly language tuition. Because no matter how detailed a textbook or language guide is, it will not be as effective as an explanation from a native speaker and real practice.
Besides that, in most languages, there are many nuances and for certain languages like Mandarin and Cantonese, a slight mispronunciation could lead to a vastly different meaning. With someone to correct you, this could be prevented. Another reason is that learning is also more fun when there are more people. If you can find others who are interested to learn the language, form a group with them. Then, you may even reduce your tuition costs.
Tip 2: Set Aside Time to Study
Similar to studying for other subjects, if you want to truly learn quickly, you need to be consistent in your studies. Set aside a certain time to study the foreign language which you have chosen and make sure that you stick to your schedule. If you are not a disciplined person, get someone to remind you and also stick your study timetable around your room.
Tip 3: Make Studying Fun!
To make things more enjoyable, use media to make your lessons more fun and engaging. If you are learning Spanish, watch some Spanish series with subtitles. If you are learning Korean, then catch up on the latest Korean dramas and learn as you enjoy!
Besides TV, you can also watch movies and sing along to foreign songs. Youtube is a great place to search for songs that have been subbed and which you can sing along to like in Karaoke.
Roleplay is another interesting method. Imagine you are in a particular situation and try to voice out the entire conversation you would have as if it is happening. This would be extremely useful if you have a friend who is an expert or native in the foreign language you are learning. If there is no such person near you, there are some online websites that will link you to people who have similar interests. However, be careful with the amount of information you reveal online!
Tip 4: Write in the language
To truly master a language, you need to learn how to write in the language too. Although it is fun to use the media to learn the spoken language, in the case of certain languages like Japanese, writing in the language is very different from speaking in the language. Thus, it is important to write to a friend who knows the language well. This person could be the person in tip #1 or it could be an online friend. In the past, people would write to penpals, now with the Internet, it allows messages to reach you instantly. Hence, there is no excuse to write to one another.
Tip 5: Practice! Practice! Practice!
Lastly, the advice of Practice makes Perfect is always true. So even after you have learned the language, do not slack. Continue to practice with friends so that you can keep what you have learned fresh in your mind.
Find out the best way that you can visit the country. Take a vacation, find out about exchange programs or even go to Germany as an au pair as I did. Completely emerge yourself in the language and culture and you will be fluent in no time.
I met other people who arrived in Germany without any knowledge of the language. One girl that I got to know well was from Bolivia and after 3 months she was completely fluent. This was only possible because she was living and breathing the language all day every day.
Start reading German magazines and newspapers
Choose short articles to start with. Take your time to read and highlight all the new words in the piece. This is a good way to increase your vocabulary. Invest in a good dictionary to help you on your way.
So, what are you waiting for? If you want to learn German, start learning today. Get the online course Rocket German, get your dictionary, and get yourself over to Germany as soon as you can. Viel Gluck!