How do you guys study languages?
I've been trying to learn German for a while and I'd like to know opinions to help me studying. I'm a Brazilian Portuguese native speaker and Portuguese has nothing in common with anglo-saxons languages, so help me please!!!
I'm just starting out learning German. Right now I really need to build vocab, and Lingvist has helped me immensely there! I'm also using Memrise, but have found it to be mediocre. My local library provides Mango, which is really nice for sentence structure and grammar. I signed up for HelloLingo where people can chat with natives and other learners, but I haven't used it much because my vocabulary is weak right now. I found a couple youtubers with a handful of German lessons, and am trying to listen to German music just so I can get used to the sounds of the language. I'm basically trying a little bit of everything xD
I tried many things and I wasted a lot of time. For me in the beginning the best was a grammar book (or books), writing, youtube videos (I like German with Jenny and German with Ania, Jenny has a great website with exercises), Duolingo and Memrise. There are a ton of resources and you have to pick just a few. I used to Google some grammar questions and found great sites. As you improve, you may want to try DW and other youtubers. Another very nice resource is a an oral course such as Pimsler. I study an average of 30 minutes a day during week days and just a few minutes (only Duo) during weekends.
Hello, I am a Spanish native speaker. Actualmente estoy aprendiendo: Português, English and Deutsch.
I rate my fluency at 55%, 70%, and 5%, respectively. I've been learning these languages for 1.5, 5, and 0.5 years, respectively.
Since you asked, I'll try to describe how I study. This is, the general process I apply for each language.
I basically set aside at least 1 hour a day to learn a language.
On an early stage, I acquire fundamental vocabulary and grammar knowledge. This I do while practicing on Duo, watching some youtube videos and keeping an audio program (50 languages web).
Once I have a decent amount of vocabulary and understanding of the grammar, I try to read and write periodically. To look for new words, and visually grasping their meaning. Making less mistakes gradually. For these purpose I buy some books in the foreign language, or donwload some pdf books. I also look for audiobooks, to follow the reading of those books.
For advance pronounciation and listening I find the "Shadowing technique" the best approach. (If talking with a native is not possible).
On a side note, I must tell that our attitude is the ultimate factor to learn not faster, but properly. I consider a good attitude towards learning must include, among other things: Set short and long term goals, focusing entirely while learning, being optimist, allowing ourselves to fail sometimes, and most importantly being consistent.
That's my humble opinion.
(As english is not my native language, I would appreciate any corrections on this reply. Thanks)
Well done, Ser910. Your English is impressive. Here are a few corrections you might consider. "I am a native Spanish speaker" instead of "I am a Spanish native speaker". Instead of "On an early stage" try "At/in the early stage" or "At/in the beginning". Because "mistakes" is a countable noun, say "fewer mistakes" instead of "less mistakes". Depending on your meaning say "this purpose" or "these purposes". Instead of "advance pronounciation" say "advanced pronunciation" - i.e. add a "d" and delete an "o". Your method is obviously working well for you. I fully agree with your last paragraph about attitude and consistency being vital to successful learning. I wish I could write as well in one of the languages I am learning as you can in English. Keep at it..
Yes, I enjoy learning German. It was the language I started with when I began using Duolingo. The streak tells you I'm not rushing through it. You'll probably finish the tree before I do. I try to do at least one exercise in each language every day. I would like to do more, but there are so many other things I like/need to spend time on. So, slow but sure. Have a great summer.
I usually learn by reading a lot. I do the basics and, as soon as possible, start reading stories that might interest me in my own language. So I can accumulate both grammar and vocabulary without even learning. If possible I watch DVD in the foreign language. Youtube might provide a useful source, too. The German country code for the net is ".de" , so wikipedia.de has information in German.
Most will say "memorise the articles with the noun". My answer is: if you don't need German for business reasons, nobody will expect you to be perfect. A foreign accent is sometimes more interesting than perfection. There is a long way from your melodic language to the more throaty stakkato sounds of German. Especially the "ch" sound will be a challenge. Don't be discouraged too soon. In the end, there should be fun. You (obviously) mastered English, so German will be not that bad. Look out for similarities between German and English, they are related. Half of Germany was occupied by Romans, so many words have Roman roots.
Some of the things I've found out help me with languages is writing in said language. Whether it is flash cards or taking notes on grammar, writing always seems to help. Another good tip is to use the language whenever you can. For example, when walking through a store, you can name off what you see in the language you are learning. If you come to a blank, then you can look it up and then continue to practive.
I hope this can be of some help to you ^^
Well, Portuguese is a Romance language, and English is a Celtic-Germanic one, so there will be some hard things in learning it, cause English grammar is a bit complex, but the hardest thing is pronunciation. But, don't trust me, cause there are many people who does not have these problems, and they just become fluent speakers, so Good Luck!
Patrick.Phang - I know what you mean. Honestly, I don't think German words are hard to pronounce, but it's not easy either. And my mothertounges are Punjabi and Hindi, but I'm more fluent in English, seeing as I live in America. shavmb - you just need to try your best, get somebody to practice German with, stay motivated and inspired, and I know you'll do great. Yeah. I have a sort of big problem of forgetting stuff way too fast.
English is (or at least was) also a Germanic language and your English is perfect, so you will succeed in learning German eventually. The problem is that, out of the Germanic languages, German is likely the second hardest on the spectrum. I think the difficulty spectrum for Germanic languages is as follows: English/Scots - Dutch/Afrikaans - Swedish/Norwegian/Danish - Icelandic - German - Yiddish. Yiddish is like an altered form of German with Hebrew and Slavic influences and a different script, which probably makes it the hardest Germanic language!
Just force yourself to read and read and read in German, every day. Read Wikipedia articles on things you are interested in, in German. Watch films in the language. Soon it will get very easy.