45

Speak to yourself! Narrate yourself as you do housework, as you drive, etc. Speak your thoughts out loud. When I'm alone, I'll converse with myself in Spanish. Depending on how good your imagination is (mine's not too shabby :P), things can get pretty exciting! Imagine a whole scenario, and explain it as if you were part of an audio drama. The more ...


28

Using a voice recorder to record your interaction with a native speaker provides feedback for yourself throughout the week when you do not have him/her with you. If you are proficient in the IPA, make notes as the native speaker corrects your pronunciation. Audiovisual resources will allow you to compare yourself to where you were the last time you "did a ...


19

For individual words, you could try forvo.com - record yourself saying the word, and compare that with the pronunciation on the site. Phrases and intonation for whole sentences is much more difficult. Of course, forvo is only useful if you can actually hear the difference in the sounds... Also, if you're learning Japanese, keep in mind you also want to ...


16

Correct spelling enhances your ability to communicate as well as your credibility. Communication Probably the most obvious reason why it is important to spell words correctly is because by misspelling you can communicate what you didn't intend or possibly even offend somebody. Consider the following example in Spanish: Yo tengo veinte años. (I am twenty ...


15

As you say in your question English is the most common language on the Internet. Also as far as I could see I can find online courses for learning any language using English i.e) English->Other languages. Considering the fact that you are asking only about online learning it would be easy to decide that if you know English well you make use of a large ...


15

Each person has a different way of storing information in their brain. You have to find a technique that works best for you. Some that you can try include: Notebook: for some people, maintaining and rereading a simple list every now and then can work. Too bad it didn't for you! Flashcards: make small cards with the word (and possibly some basic grammatical ...


14

Transparent Language published a white paper entitled "The Five Principles of Effective Second Language Acquisition". In this, they state that there has been a shift towards learning a large amount of vocabulary before then jumping into learning the grammar (emphasis mine): For years, the popular methodology for learning a second language was to focus on ...


13

The quest for learning grammar is a valiant one, and it is not only difficult, but everybody is going to learn grammar differently. Thus, it's well-nigh impossible to write an exhaustive answer here. So I'm not gonna. :) Pronunciations are relatively static; spellings and definitions are, too. Grammar, on the other hand, can be different for every sentence. ...


13

In addition to J. Siebeneichler's answer, using the language yourself is often a good way to solidify things in your brain. One way you can do that is to try to blog at a site like lang-8 where native speakers of the language can tell you the things you do wrong with the language, and suggest ways of rewording things. This won't work instantly, but if you ...


12

Even if you don't have the time to actively study a language, a little upkeep can go a long way. It can be beneficial to recognize you're not studying actively for now, and decide not to study grammar, vocabulary or textbooks for a while. Instead, try to just use the language - just a little, but regularly. By recognizing that you're on a "break" from ...


12

When I was learning ASL, I found that signing along to tv shows and videos allowed me to develop the muscle memory. Because many words (in ASL) do not have "official" signs for them, practicing fingerspelling of sentences also helped when I needed to spell out words that have no sign associated with them. Written sign language dictionaries are useful for ...


10

Concerning reading in general Reading is an excellent way to not only increase your vocabulary, but also increase your familiarity with the language in general, and help you learn from context (being able to guess from context is a valuable tool if your vocab isn't quite up to par with natives). However, reading alone isn't the "holy grail" to ...


10

I'll outline a workflow I've used in the past and discuss its merit. Read the story aloud slowly. This is invaluable because it helps pronunciation skills flourish. It also will help you see the language and ingrain these patterns when speaking. This will help your reading and speaking skills. Try to paraphrase the story. Think about the story and ...


10

The best way is probably to use it. Speaking is harder than writing, so it's more intense, and tends to be more effective, faster. But, as you say there are no native speakers around you, I offer some workarounds that helped me: Talk to yourself in the language. Aloud. Preferably in private. You can talk about your thoughts, or what you're doing, or some ...


9

To prevent yourself forgetting the language, you should basically use it on daily basis. Here are few ideas how to do it: use flash cards and keep them visible around your work place, use some mnemonic techniques to repeat most troubled words, print some language cheatsheet and place it where you can see it, use some daily newsletters to read them on your ...


9

Dreaming may help but it signals that you are quite proficient in your speaking abilities. Dreaming in another language can help by allowing you to "speak" with that language. But this may fool you as you might not be actually be speaking the way you think you are: One interesting aspect of dreams in bilinguals is that some people have reported speaking ...


9

I've used Memrise for years to help me build up my vocabulary for various languages. It's great in that any language can have a Memrise course built for it, so it works well for less popular ones such as Tamazight. Here is a Memrise course for learning Tamazight. I find that getting comfortable with some basic vocab and hearing the sounds of the language are ...


9

I am going to assume that your native language is a Germanic language (English or German?). The CEFR or CEFRL describes skill levels for four skills: reading, listening, speaking and writing. At CEFR level B2 you should have the following abilities (quoted from Wikipedia): Can understand the main ideas of complex text on both concrete and abstract ...


8

There are a lot of methods to build up vocabulary I could find. I have created a important list of them here. Read a lot : Read stories, newspapers, articles a lot. Have a dictionary in the side and look the meaning for words you don't know. Use mnemonics : Use specialised memory tricks that can suite you to keep the words in memory. Study it in context : ...


8

There are several criteria you can use: Mutual intelligibility. You can pick a language that is mutually intelligible with one of these you already know. For example, if you know English, a good candidate would be Scots. If you know German, you may consider learning Dutch or Yiddish. Pidgins and creoles. These are languages that developed in the situations ...


8

I would estimate my Danish speaking skills to be around level A2, and I have had some basic conversations completely in Danish. It requires some cooperation from the other person; if they use too long sentences or speak too fast, then I will not be able to understand them. In general, the question seems to be a bit backward. You don't first check if you ...


7

The short answer is, yes. You could learn (to comprehend) a language just by being exposed to media and books. The longer answer is, yes, but... Books (and other language learning kits) provide a basis for language comprehension. They have rules and exercises to test your grammar and other non-interactive linguistic devices. However, this is a very limited ...


7

I think it would be more beneficial to have English subtitles. It would help you link the sound of a word to how it is spelled. If you don't know a word - pause the show and look it up. Given today's' technology, it is relatively quickly. Having subtitles in a different language will most likely confuse you more than help you, because you have to hear one ...


7

Pros: You can learn and remember words from that book easily You can learn what synonym is actually used by the native people. For example, the translation of "Oh My God" is அடக் கடவுளே. But in real life we use words like அய்யோ, etc... This can be easily learned through the novel. Cons: You might actually skip some words and may not find it's meaning as ...


7

Comparing learning with another non-native speaker vs. by yourself: Pros: Able to practice speaking together in the language. You can help each other to stay focused and keep learning for a long time (this depends on personality of course). If you have trouble understanding a grammatical concept, your learning partner can help you with it, and vice versa....


7

To add to what others have said, there really are too many factors that can work together to allow one to figure out the definition of a word, many of which are not directly related to proficiency. It can depend on how many of the others words you know. If you read a sentence where a single word is unknown, you obviously have an advantage to if you only ...


7

Try to speak with yourself at times. Conversing with yourself can help bring out a lot of new vocabulary into your active vocabulary as you are forced to use some new words from time to time. Stick to a subject per conversation and pretend you're talking to someone else (which is you). Maybe talk about politics or a favorite subject in school in your new ...


7

In my opinion you have to think in the target language before being able to dream in that language. And for me, if you think in the target language, you will dream inevitably in that language. The rest of the process will be acquired at high speed because your brain has decided to think in the target language rather than in your native language.


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