People are always looking to learn a new language because it’s so rewarding. You get a new chance to challenge yourself and connect with new people or cultures. After a while, you might get tired of working through your textbook or virtual lessons. You won’t lose steam if you pick right back up with a few new strategies.
Check out these six practical ways to use the language you’re learning every day. They aren’t dull or tedious, which may help you feel excited again as you continue to improve your fluency.
1. Follow New People Online
Memorizing lessons in a textbook is one way to learn a new language. You can also use the social media apps you scroll through every day. Depending on what language you want to become fluent in, you can follow native speakers online.
If you want to learn Spanish, you could follow educational Instagram accounts that only post helpful lessons. Comment using the vocabulary you learn. You might also find online influencers or celebrities who post in that language for fun. You’ll naturally figure out how to practice language learning if you use it in a natural setting you’re already used to.
2. Change Your Phone Settings
When you set up your phone, selecting your native language was the first thing it asked you to do. Anyone far enough along in their studies to feel confident in their abilities can switch the language that’s pre-programmed in your phone.
You could also do this with a tablet or laptop, depending on what you use the most. Intermediate to advanced students can use this trick to learn how to practice a language every day without adding study or classroom time to their schedule.
3. Try a New Hobby
Think about the hobbies you enjoy in your free time. They likely happen in your first language. What if you switched them to whatever you want to become more fluent in?
Read a book in your new language. Knit along to videos where the instructor speaks with new vocabulary words. If you’re wondering how to use the language you’re learning every day, reimagining your favorite hobby will integrate it with what you already do.
4. Use It for Work
Ask your favorite coworker to learn a language along with you. Use it when you email back and forth or send instant messages. Even if you only practice together while you chat over coffee on your break, you’ll still become more fluent with the extra practice.
When you feel confident in your language skills, make sure to update your resume. Bilingual skills are part of what recruitment agents look for in future employees, so your daily practice could advance your career with time.
5. Crete Different Lists
You know what you usually buy at the grocery store and what your schedule looks like. Even if you do everything on-the-fly, use your new vocabulary to write your to-do lists. It’s good practice to remind yourself how to say things like different kinds of food, actions and verb tenses.
6. Listen to New Music
Educational lessons and quizzes often use only formal language. It’s clear-cut and simple to understand. After you get the basics down, you can move on to slang. You can also get into informal sentence structures by listening to music in your second language.
Sing along to it while you read the lyrics. You’ll hear the words and better assimilate the informal syntax in personal use with time. Take your skills a step further by writing songs after understanding the flow of the new lyrical structure.
7. Try Something New
These are practical ways to use the language you’re learning every day, so don’t be afraid to try something new! Listening to music or practicing vocabulary with a coworker will improve your fluency and potentially advance other aspects of your life as well.
About the Author
Ginger Abbot is an education and learning writer with a love for culture. Read more work on Classrooms, where she also serves as Managing Editor.