If you devoted time to learning a language this year, now is the time to consider how you’ll keep that information fresh in your mind. There is a common saying about languages: “If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.” It’s also like starting an exercise program and then just stopping overnight. You must maintain your exercise regime even if you stop going to classes!
The good news is that once you have truly learned and comprehended something, you do not forget it. If you don’t use your knowledge daily, it may slip into a deeper part of your memory, but it won’t vanish.
The challenge is to ensure that your new information stays active in your brain and doesn’t get lost in hard-to-find parts of your memory. Seeking opportunities to hone your skills may require some effort, but this effort will pay off in spades.
By adhering to our list of tips for maintaining a language, you can improve your vocabulary and familiarity with the language outside the classroom. Just don’t forget to write down new words in a notebook!
1. Online Newspaper Reading
Most prominent newspapers have websites, and you can read most of them online for free. This may be a problem for advertisers, media oligarchs, and the future of journalism as a profession, but it’s fantastic news for language learners. One of the benefits of reading the news in a foreign language is that you will already be familiar with the context of international stories, either from your knowledge or from media in your native language. Local and national stories will provide you with a unique cultural perspective. Reading in a different language makes it possible to gain a new perspective on a story and acquire interesting vocabulary. Opinion pieces, for instance, are frequently helpful for learning idioms.
Here are a few of the major ones:
- EL Pas is a Spanish newspaper with an international focus.
- Le Monde, the leading French newspaper,
- Die Zeit is Germany’s most widely circulated newspaper (it can be a bit wordy).
- The BBC Online is Britain’s national broadcaster… This is an excellent resource for those who wish to practice English.
- Corriere della Serra—Probably Italy’s most reputable newspaper.
- China Daily-Available in French and English as well
- The Yomiuri Shimbun is the most widely read national newspaper in Japan.
2. Watch TV Series and Films
Especially if you can find versions with subtitles, watching movies is a great way to keep your language skills up to date and practice listening skills. Subscribe to Netflix or Prime TV, to name a few excellent streaming sources.
3. Get a Language Exchange Going
Numerous online sources offer “study buddy” programs through which you can connect with a native speaker of another language who wishes to improve their command of your native tongue. You divide your time during a study session between teaching and learning. Even outside of a formal setting, you may find private advertisements for a study partner in the local newspaper or on local message boards. Why not place one yourself if not?
In the past, finding a pen pal could be challenging. Where to search? How long should a letter take? Then followed the wait for a response.
In numerous ways, the Internet provides instant gratification. Using applications such as Whatsapp and Messenger to converse in foreign languages can be one of the best for language learners.
5. Listen to Music
Music transcends borders like no other medium. For example, you can learn multiple new meanings and words for beef from rap music or the language of love from ballads. Songs are a primary motivation for many people to learn English and can also be a significant aid. You can frequently find lyrics online.
6. Plan Your Next Session
With our vast range of virtual language programs, you can learn and travel simultaneously, no matter your goals. Visit ELAM.ca for more info!