It's been a year since I decided to move to Thailand and learn Thai and it has been the best experience ever. Although I am half Thai and I've visited family here almost every year my language skills were not the best but now it's much better and now I sometimes feel that my Thai is much better than my English! Learning a new language can be very daunting and you often don't know where to start so here are a few things I've learned on my quest to become multi-lingual.
Take LessonsLearning a new language at home on your own is entirely possible but I would always recommend you take at least a few formal lessons as having an outsider to correct your pronunciation or grammar will help you become more confident and fluent.
Make foreign friendsThere's only so much you can learn from books so the best way to learn a language is to make a friend in that language as they can teach you how to sound more like a native and correct your mistakes. Making foreign friends can be hard but there are all sorts or websites and apps now that can connect you to others who want to learn your language so make that connection.
Music, TV, Books and MoviesOne of the best ways I've found to pick up a language is to watch a lot of foreign TV! Most of my Japanese and Korean I picked-up from watching anime and drama and it's a good entertaining alternative to lessons, I find if I'm enjoying something I'm more likely to learn and want to learn more and it's a great feeling to be watching or listening to something and actually understand it rather than relying on subtitles and you also learn little things about the culture of that language to.
Immerse yourself!Probably the best way to become fluent in a language is to completely immerse yourself in that language and culture, finding yourself completely surrounded in a foreign culture will quickly help you pick it the language and get understood. I know it may not be possible for everyone to just pack their bags and move abroad to study but there are ways you can do that at home such as the tips I've discussed above, TV, books, movies and foreign friends are always a big help as long as you have a some exposure to the language you'll definitely learn something new.
Do a little bit everydayIf you really want to get fluent practice is key so don't slack off do a little bit everyday whether it be learning a single word or letter, watching a short lesson video on YouTube or listening to a podcast as long as you're consistent things will begin to sink in faster than you know it.
Love & Mochi