Fitting language learning into your life

Flash cards

Many people claim they don’t have enough time to learn a new language as they have far too many other things to do. However, even the busiest person can usually find at least a few spare moments during their day. While they may not be able to study for very long at any one time, they could fit in quite a few shorts bursts of study among their other activities.

If you don’t have time to sit down with textbooks, dictionaries, tapes, CDs and other materials to learn a language, there are other ways you could go about it. For example, you could copy recordings of language lessons onto your mp3 player or mobile phone and listen to them while your doing other things such as commuting or exercising. You could carry flashcards around with you and whip them out when you have a spare moment or two, or use electronic flashcards. At the gym you could count whatever exercise you’re doing in the language you’re learning, or go through lists of things – days of the week, months of the year, colours, etc.

The key is the use whatever time you can to your best advantage, and to have language learning materials to hand as often as possible. Ideally those materials should be small, portable, and require minimal faffing around with to use.