Journaling in your target language

I recently started a journal/diary, or "Tagebuch," where I write everything in German. Just in the past couple days it has helped me to achieve a deeper understanding about the German language and the way it flows. It has also helped my vocabulary a lot. Here are some tips I've come up with for starting your "Tagebuch," "journal intime," "diario," or whatever the word for "diary" is in your target language :)

1) The first page may seem daunting. You may not know what to write; you may be afraid you're going to mess up; you may start to doubt yourself. Don't let any fears of messing up keep you from trying, because after all, you can't progress in anything like this without a few mistakes.

2) Unless you are already pretty advanced, you will need a dictionary or translator. And guess what? That's ok! You'll learn new words while you do this, and you'll also learn words that are important to you specifically if you're writing about your day.

3) Stuck on what to write? Here are some suggestions: - What happened today - Describe yourself - Tell a story, whether fictional or not - Write a poem - How your journey to learning a language is going I really recommend starting by talking about your day, because I find that to be helpful in forcing me to learn new words. With poems and stories, I could easily stick with words I already know.

4) Most of all, have fun with it! If it seems like a chore to write in your journal, then you won't do it often. If journaling isn't your thing, figure out another way to practice writing. Just don't give up, because practice makes progress (not perfect, sorry).

At some point, you'll be able to think more in your target language, and develop a way of thinking that is exclusive to the language you're learning. You'll get there :)

May 18, 2016


This is a great idea! I've always started diaries but never wrote in them as much as I wanted too. Maybe I'll create one for Spanish.

May 18, 2016

I would also suggest, if writing a journal is indeed to much to start, writing just one sentence a day. It is a much smaller start, though it encourages use of the same skill set.

You might try keeping a copy of your journal on lang-8, where German speakers can read what you post and make suggestions or corrections.

I will have to begin writing in French more. :) Merci pour l'idee mon ami.

Thanks for this post. I want to start to write more routinely. Actually just yesterday I ordered a small guide for writing more close on life to improve my writing property.

Have you tried lang-8? I use the site for a few months already but don't write so much myself but remedy others' work.

Do you know this Polyglot ? He's so consistend with his writings

Only just started learning languages (French & Polish) even at my advanced years and I am actually enjoying it. Your recommendation of a diary in the respected language is a great idea one that I'm definitely gonna do.

I do french in the morning and Polish in the afternoon so I'll be doing 3 diaries. 1st one in English then the exact same words in French in the French one and again the 3rd one in Polish with the translation of the English diary. Thanks again for the idea.

I've been toying with doing this for the past few days! I really enjoy journaling, but I tend to write about personal stuff so I would feel weird using lang-8 to post for others to read, but I might do simple stories or smth like that and post on there that way I can still get feedback~ But I've been meaning to start a new daily journal and considered writing it all in my target language, but I'm also thinking of writing it in English and then keeping a separate notebook where I can translate or rewrite it all in Korean (my target language), that way I can easily look back on the English one. But just keeping one in Korean might be more motivating to become fluent and study more that way I'll retain the language for (hopefully) forever. Plus I could write it out in the open and not worry about others around peaking at my personal thoughts >:D

Wow, I never would have thought of this! I'll be doing it from here on out-- thanks!

Amazing idea! i'll consider.

Thank you very much for this great idea! You deserves lingo. Starting from today!

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