https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

19 Ways to Get Out of Your comfort Zone and Learn Your Language

Sometimes it can be difficult to get used to the slang or accent of the language you're learning. It can also be hard to get used to purposely trying to piece together sentences. Here are some ways to get out of your comfort zone and start to pick up your language!

  1. play music in the language you want to master.
  2. Podcasts- either entirely in the language or that help you learn the language
  3. Literature - even if it's for children much younger than you
  4. Settings - set your native language to the one you want to learn for a day and see if you can understand it!
  5. Find someone to practice with
  6. Duolingo, Memrise, Tinycards, babel, etc..
  7. Pencil and paper. You learn 75% more by writing it down.
  8. Study the culture- sometimes learning the names of important names and holidays, as well as places and foods help you to pique your interest and therefore motivation.
  9. Talk to or teach your pets or possessions. You will be surprised how much you remember after trying to drill it in someone else's head.
  10. Have fun!! You won't be motivated if you don't tell yourself your reason behind learning your language and that you're excited about it. Repeating this in your head ( though out loud or in a journal is better) will raise your positivity towards learning it and get you to be more eager to learn.
  11. Food! Trying new foods from a different culture is fun and squeezes in some extra vocab!
  12. Watch your favorite movies in your language! You can also watch YouTube channels with English subtitles and another user suggested the YouTube channel bookbox.
  13. Visit a country/province/territory/state that speaks your language
  14. Talk to yourself in the language
  15. Write notes to yourself in the language, then you will have to recall vocab more often.
  16. Put labels on items around your house- your brain should begin to pick up on it- and you may find yourself calling glue 'pegamento' in your head... That's happened to me...
  17. Do the alternate trees. E.g. Learn Spanish from English and English from Spanish
  18. Create a shopping list in the language you would like to learn
  19. Go to neighborhoods where that ethnic group is dominant and make some friends! They can teach you all about their food, customs, traditions, and language! You'll have a new friend and someone to practice with!

There are many more I'm forgetting, so I'll update when I remember. But for now, work hard and have a beautiful day!

June 24, 2019

88 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lisamybias

Thank's for your post ! ^-^ Actually I'm already doing all of this things, except the #9, why ? I don't have a pet ... But I'll try talking to my teddy bear and see if he obeys me : I'll let you know !

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alynn.18

Something else that I have done in the past, is when baby sitting I bring Spanish children's books so that there is someone there, I might have accidently started teaching my best friends child Spanish enough where he has heard other people speaking in Spanish and ran up and screamed Hola! like the 2 year old that he is...

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lisamybias

Wow this child is a genius...

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Intwoplaces

I think you mean 'babysitting'. Babysitting means looking after someone's baby or small child. Baby sitting means actually sitting on a baby and is far less common.

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MarquettaC3

pretty common where i come from...we do it for sport lol

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

Please do!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Isaiah240933

Or, you could also pretend to teach someone even if there not really there

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AriannaWood

That cracked me up, lol

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/B0900223
<h1>9 is actually a really good idea. let me know how it goes.</h1>
June 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hexxxx

Here is Number 14 - Practice Talking To Yourself in your target language. If you're crazy like me and you talk to yourself a lot when you're alone, try having those conversations in your target language. You'll either get crazier or far more fluent. It's not possible for me to get any crazier so guess what? Yep, my Spanish is getting a whole lot better. There's really something to be said for being totally nuts - ha :-)

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LangGut526

Yep, I do that too, and I started randomly speaking other languages when talking to other people as well. My mom and I were in the car and she said "Look a deer!" and I remember wanting to see it and screaming "DOVE?!?!" and was met with a look of pure confusion. But I guess it means my Italian is really sinking in.

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

Thanks I'll add that!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rhyhislop2

I do this also at work! its entertaining haha

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kimjongjung

i did with my local langs. i speak a lot with myself. but im still not that fluent in spanish to speak to self.

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mwbrand1

Excellent list! I think #10 should be #1. I particularly like #9. I always speak to my Dog in German. My family members roll their eyes when I give the Dog a command in German and the dog responds correctly. I tell them, "she thinks she is a German Shepard".

Thanks for sharing this post!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MarquettaC3

lol. wow what a streak 778 days?? you get a lingot for that!

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlanS181824

And a lingot to you for your 2 day streak too Marquetta :)

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AriannaWood

lol

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nsge__

Few years ago I couldn't understand a word in English. Today I'm able to communicate easily thanks to years of watching English YouTube, TV shows, podcasts and music. Being fascinated with the culture of the country's language you are trying to learn also helps. What also helped me, was that instead of trying to translate every sentence, word by word I tried to understand the context of the message. It helped me a lot, after a year or so of doing that, I was able to watch TV Shows/Movies in English without subtitles and understand 95% as much as I'd do in my native language.

So, tl;dr "Don't translate every word, just get the context of the message". Don't believe me? Try reading something in your native language, I can guarantee that you won't be trying to think about every word and it's meaning.

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AriannaWood

That was super helpful, thanks! (What's your native language?) Also, congrats on learning English :)

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nsge__

Pretty late to reply, but my native language is polish :-)

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ArinVids

For all the new German learners out there like me, I created a Twitter page @GermanLearners to have basic conversations in German. Pretty much a place to practice outside Duolingo. Feel free to follow! Danke, tschuss!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mafaldaenlondres

Put labels in your house (ie on jara in the kitchen) with the names of the ingredients in the language you are learning

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

That's a really cool idea! I'll add that! We do that in my Spanish class, Idk how I forgot that...

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Edgar782384

Wonderful post! Thanks!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Feral_Primate

-12. watch your favorite movies in Spanish. Most BluRay discs now have a Spanish language option.

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

Great idea! I'll add that!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DruMelego

About the "watch movies or TV in the lenguage" tip. I would say that sometimes understanding them can be quite difficult. I would recommend everybody to start with Disney and other kid animated movies. Because they are animated the voices are more clear and because they are targeted to kids the vocabulary tends to be more simple.

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amaan-T

This is a really important list! I hope everyone looks at it.
Also, in #8 you said "help you to peak your interest". I believe you mean "help you to pique* your interest" coming from the verb 'pique' meaning "stimulate (interest or curiosity)". It's a commonly misused word in the phrase, just thought I'd mention the correction so you (and whoever else reads this) can learn something new.
Thanks so much for sharing this list!

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

You're right! Thank you for letting me know! I'll fix it!

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/june14toeternity

Great post! I have tried most of them.

There is a good youtube channel called BookBox if I am not mistaken. They put a lot of fun and short animated stories in several languages with subtitles. I always learn a lot from them. =)

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

I'll add that!

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DruMelego

Thanks for the link!

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/corsig

nice motivator. Think positive and go for it!

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RuwaydaAtH

Thanks for that list! I'll make sure I try these out. ^-^

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/_.ha_n_n_ah._

Thanks for the list; have a lingot ;)

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chickenator1944

Thanks! I'm going to try #16!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AtaWis
  1. Watch your favorite movies in your language... I've started learning Spanish because of some Spanish series and now I have this tactic: watch each episode with English subtitles first, then with Spanish ones. Since I've seen it in English, I have an idea what they're saying and can try to understand each word in the Spanish sentence B) haha (plus I'm learning English during first part, oh yeaa)
June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gergana_Vaseva

Oh,it's easy to say it but when it comes to action... When I think about...for example English, because English is the global language... I cannot find a friend who would like to try to speak in English with me. So I will ask here. Is there anybody who would like to chat with me on English or Swedish? I would be really glad to find some friends, even if it is only in the written form of the language. It will be useful.

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AbdusSalaa1

Hello, I am learning Spanish and Arabic but I can help you with English. I will help anyone if you just ask. I am most consistent with Whatsapp. (966) 50 830 8132 I think it will appear for you, but my name is Abdus Salaam Robbins from the United States. Good luck in your journey.

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/geloise16

I can help with English (one of my 2 native languages)!

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pepeleales

te ha faltado la lectura de páginas webs, es el metodo más simple y une el punto 3 y punto 8 buscas algún servicio tipo cerrajeros en el idioma que quieras aprender, por ejemplo Español entras en una página web de todas las que hay y empiezas a leertela entera así tienes literatura y aprendes la cultura de una manera sencilla.

Ejemplo de página web en Español buscando un servicio: https://barcelonadesatascos.com

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndresGarner

Great list and great post!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chocochipkookie

Wonderful post! Very good tips too!!!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sydney_St

Thanks for this!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cutie344448

Thank you for this post! I never thought of using no.16; I'd like to try that out!

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ProfJackel

Here's one that I do:

Whenever I spend time watching TV/movies with my family (who watch TV and movies in English), I try and translate the dialog in my head, and if there is a word that comes up a lot that I don't know I will make sure to learn it later.

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Msanjose1

dresdenjolly - A lot of what you covered has been covered in many posts, but your list is comprehensive and concise! Thank you. Lingot for you!

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NinaTheresa1

This is SUPER helpful! Thanks! (btw i also ADORE kotlc)

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lindsay695415

These are some excellent suggestions! I've just stocked up on flashcards to review words and phrases I've encountered for when I need a break from screen time :)

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AJTPav

The logic behind this is true. I got interested in Japanese through anime both subbed and dubbed. I realized there were differences in translation and it made me interested in learning the original language. Listening to podcasts and watching Youtube has definitely helped. The whole process has expanded my food options as well.

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dylan_Nicholson

Re #1 - what if the music sung in the language you're learning is uniformly terrible?

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

There are all different types of music in different languages. I am learning Spanish, and I enjoy listening to a band called, 'mujeres' meaning 'women' they are a sort of punky band, different from what most may think of as 'traditional Spanish music' . Just think, in the US we have indie, rock, punk, opera, pop, contemporary, and much, much more. These music choices exist in nearly every continent, save for Antarctica. Have fun with it!

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JanelleMobley

Everyday while driving home from work I talk out loud to myself in French about my day and how I'm feeling. It's weird but it works!

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/_hentgen133

Nice post! It cheered me up a lot!

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sakura783044

ありがとうございます! Thanks for the tips! :)

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SkyeHaven

Wow a great list! Thanks for this post! I will definitely be using this in the future! I especially love tip #9. I have now started a German school for my stuffed animals lol. XD However, I don't really know about the food one. I've been to Germany before, but the food there isn't that great... is there something else I could do to learn about the culture that doesn't involve food?

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michu80s

Good ideas, thanks! Especially I like shoping list and cooking recipes. I am just starting a new language so I know only a few words. When my vocabulary will be reacher I will try books for children and movies with subtitles later. I think the best motivation is pleasure & passion. I don't like fear as motivation. Unfortunately, it is the most common one - people have deadlines and they must study languages. Sad truth. Do you have more ideas about how to study and repeat knowing just a few words - eraly begginers stage?

June 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SkyeHaven

Tinycards is a great way to practice your vocabulary, and you can practice the easier and tougher vocabulary words whenever you need

June 29, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hell.Bent
<h1>10... What should you tell yourself if there is NO reason for learning any language(s)?</h1>
June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jacke47

Tell yourself you are exercising your brain so it stays sharp.

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dresdenjolly

Tell yourself it's in case you get in a situation in which you need to know how to speak.. Spanish! Or french!

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jeff_Grundman

Understanding a second language helps you understand your own language better. I have learned a lot about how English grammar works by studying French. I never though about how many different ways we use the word "that" in English until I saw how many different words the French replace it with, as just one example.

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hexxxx

Tell yourself that learning a language will teach you things you didn't know....including many great reasons for learning a new language. How's that :-)

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lavitasognata
  1. There is never no reason to learn a language. With every language you learn, your understanding of the entire world improves and expands.

  2. Because you think it's fun and it makes you happy! TREAT YO'SELF

July 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LorisThoma

Thanks for the tips, most of them I have tried. Number 7 is a huge help for me. As I begin a new skill I go to tips and take notes. Sometimes I go back and read the notes but just taking the time to read and condense helps me to learn more.

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hexxxx

And yes, I love your list. It earns you a Lingot....

June 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alejandrob13956

nice!

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LindaCummi

Thank you. I will try some of these tips.

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JamesGonza588254

Great advice, I have used all of the aforementioned techniques. Watching movies is great, one may also watch shows that are recorded in a series.

Congrats to all those super achievers, keep going and never give in.

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sofa4ka

Thanks for the list! Another idea could be making a shopping list in the language you're learning! :-) You could start with only one or a couple of items in another language, and once you remember them, add/replace more and more. I think it's cool to understand a shopping list in a foreign language. :-)

Here are examples for 'mixed' shopping lists (with words in Spanish and Russian):

(Spanish) 1. Onions 2. Lettuce 3. Pepinos

(Russian) 1. Vanilla sugar 2. Baking powder 3. мука

June 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vicki966016

good ideas.

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rhombuskids

Definitely trying a bunch of these out!

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IshaanWinn

i loved it

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TheSebakl

like this

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TrevorGodin

Great ideas I listen to the radio while driving I also set an interactive video game too the language too set a virtual immersion. Yes i talk to my dog ! It’s great practice before actually speaking to someone who knows the language .

Thanks

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EleanaK.OwO

Thank you! This post is wonderful. Whoever is reading this, please never stop learning a language you like. There are ways to improve and learn more! Personally, I learned English from YouTube(rs) and by talking to myself.. simple as that. I definetely suggest you use subtitles at first.

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AriannaWood

This was super helpful!!! I'll give some of these a shot for sure!

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sweet_and_Savory

Thank you so much for posting this! I really think that these are great tips!

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AbdesslamDai

Thanks a lot for this post!! I'll do as you said, well not everything thou

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Morgan138630

Thanks for this! It's helped a lot! x

June 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/B0900223

I really wish I would've decided to learn Polish earlier. If I would've started earlier I would've lived an hour away from Chicago and had the sizeable Polish minority in the area to practice with. I also wish I would've paid more attention to the language when I was actually in Poland.

June 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lavitasognata

Draw very silly comics in your target language. I just did one of two very crudely drawn cats arguing, it was so much fun <3

July 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ethan150903

talking to myself in my language is great, but people tend to stare like you're crazy when walking down the sidewalk having a convo with yourself

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VladHolloway

.

June 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mr.Sonnyboy

Hey did you like my post

June 24, 2019
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