4 Strategies for Learning a New Language with Limited Resources
Whenever you’re not surrounded by communities and situations that force you to pick up new language skills, it can be a little challenging to assimilate your thoughts and communications into another language voluntarily. Not only is it often tempting to just revert back to your own native language out of convenience, but actually finding opportunities to learn and practice in the first place can be difficult.
It goes without saying that, often, it’s necessary to get a bit creative with the ways in which one practices language when it’s not possible to do so in an organic way otherwise. Here are 4 ways that you can practice a new language, even if you’re not surrounded by native speakers IRL. But, bear in mind, it’s always best to be exposed to native speakers as often as possible!
1. Find yourself a great podcast online and listen, listen, listen
Not surrounded by your target language, well, ever? Not to worry – just find a great podcast and listen away. Ideally, the best podcasts will be long, done by native speakers, and somewhat interesting. And, you may not need to pay loads of money for them, either. Often, podcasts are inexpensive or free and can be great ways to supplement your language exposure.
Podcasts are also incredibly convenient in that you can listen to them on your way to school or work, during your day, when you’re studying, or really whenever you want. Be sure to take advantage of their full potential for practicing.
2. Select a TV series on Netflix and get addicted
Never underestimate the power of watching cinema in your target language. You can choose the genre, the topics, the intensity, and the language. Be sure to add subtitles so you can get double the exposure. Watching and listening to native speakers on screen is often much more interesting than sitting in class.
Wanting to practice the language you’re learning? Take a free placement test to see how your level measures up!
3. Subscribe to YouTube channels in your target language
These days, it seems like YouTube is everywhere, and it probably isn’t going anywhere soon. The great thing about YouTube is that it’s huge, its influence is everywhere, and it’s a great way to incorporate more native language into your learning routine. Make sure you don’t overlook the potential to use YouTube and other similar programs to your advantage.
4. Join a club or language group in your city to seek out native speakers
Even if you may think that native speakers are nowhere to be found in your home country or wherever you find yourself at present, think again. Because we live in such a globalized world, sometimes it can be surprising just how small the world is and how many different types of people are all around us. Try attending some clubs or language exchanges locally to connect with native speakers of your target language.
Just because you don’t live halfway around the world, don’t think that you can’t still improve your language skills and abilities in fun and inexpensive ways.
What tips do you have for continuing to learn a language when native speakers are sparse? Please share with us in the comments!