Go There!

by Jim

I cannot speak for everyone, but I know that I personally learn auditorially. I learn by hearing things, not by reading them. Therefore, my greatest language-learning tip would have to be Surround yourself with native speakers, or Go to the place where the language is spoken. It's a good idea to learn a few basics before you leave, organize an exchange, or bring a friend to translate so that you can communicate better if the need arise, and also to help you pick up on the language. Spend time listening to people, even though it sounds unintelligable. Pay attention to hand gestures, these are clues as to what they are talking about. Play games with yourself. Say 'I wont eat anything unless I can say it in this language.' As you begin to understand more and more, try to guess what people are saying before it is explained to you. Not only can it be fun, it helps force you to learn the language!

During a trip like this, it is helpful to bring along some sort of learning material to couple with it. Do a bit of it every day, because it will help you with the grammar side of things. Then, practice practice practice once you get home again! The best people to learn a language from are the native speakers!

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