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7 Mistakes Stopping You From Improving Your Foreign Language Skills

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Anyone interested in learning a new language needs to remember that this is no walk in the park. Learning a different language demands dedication, hard work, and a lot of patience from the learner’s side. Setbacks are always possible, and everyone should expect to make some mistakes at the beginning of their journey.

The best thing you can do when starting to learn a new language is to find out all about the possible mistakes you can make. This way, you will be better prepared in advance, and this will allow you to handle the learning process better. In order to help you with that, here are some of the most popular mistakes one can make when learning a new language.


1. Only practicing through homework

Homework can be a great way to learn a new language, but it isn’t the only effective way. The traditional methods of teaching a language have been upgraded in the last few years, and there are many new options available. In order to learn a new language, you need to be ready to devote time to trying different things apart from the classic homework exercises.

Thanks to the internet, students now have access to a lot of material that can help them learn. Foreign movies, music, television shows, and even tutorials and other videos can be a great way for someone to practice. All you have to do is find something you are interested in and do a Google search. You will be surprised at how much you can find online that will help you learn your new language without you actually having to study.


2. Not learning with the right teacher

Learning a new language can be expensive, and many people are not prepared for this fact early on. This can result in students learning from the wrong person that does not have the appropriate certifications needed to teach. Spending some additional money on a professional is the best way to go if you have found that learning by yourself is not easy. Whether you choose to learn online or in a language school, this is a serious mistake to avoid.

The right teacher will have enough experience to determine the pace you should learn the new language in. They will also be able to give you the right materials to do so and help you every step of the way. A native speaker is oftentimes the best option, but there are many teachers with years of experience who know the language better than some natives do.


3. Trying to learn too quickly

Trying to learn a language as quickly as possible is usually not the best way to do it. There is only so much information our brains can handle, and learning something new takes time. This is exactly why you should not become frustrated when learning something new. Giving up at the beginning of the journey is a big mistake because learning the language will become easier as you make progress.

The more time you give it, the easier you will find it to remember more complex grammatical phenomena and vocabulary. It all has to do with how much you are willing to practice on a daily basis. You will be able to learn as long as you give yourself time to process the information and work daily and strategically.


4. Paying too much attention to pronunciation

Another mistake many students make when learning a new language is paying too much attention to how they pronounce things. Certain languages like Spanish and French have different pronunciations, which can be tough for some students to get. Learning a new language is not about pronouncing everything perfectly, and this should not be your goal.

What you should do instead is focus on learning about the culture of the country speaking the language. No one is going to care about how you pronounce a word when they see how much you care about their language and country. Some of the best educational websites for college students can provide you with such materials and allow you to interact with other students worldwide. This way, you will see just how little pronouncing things matters.


5. Not using the right tools

Even if you are learning with the help of a teacher, there are plenty of tools you can use in order to aid the learning process. Practicing everything you have learned is important so that you never forget it as you continue expanding your knowledge. Therefore, the right tools will help you achieve just that.

Use apps that are available when you are offline and on different platforms and you can have with you anywhere you go. This way, you can practice the language whenever you have even 5 minutes of spare time and continue your learning journey.


6. Not speaking early enough

Trying to learn a language, without speaking it, is nearly impossible. Our brains memorize things a lot easier when hearing them, and speaking the new language is the best practice you can get. Making mistakes is only natural when starting this process, and the more mistakes you make the easier it will be for you to remember them.

If you are learning the language on your own, it might be a good idea to find someone to help you with speaking. You can either look at YouTube videos and repeat after the speaker or even find an online friend through language learning websites. There are many people all over the world that would love to learn your language and help you learn theirs. This way, both of you will make mistakes, and you will feel a lot more comfortable speaking the new language very quickly.


7. Not being motivated enough

Last but not least, a big mistake many people make when learning a new language is not being motivated enough to learn it. While you might be very excited in the beginning, this excitement is bound to wear off if you don’t have a strong enough motive. This is based on the fact that learning a language requires a lot of practice and therefore time.

Many people do not realize that in the beginning and are therefore not ready for this commitment. One thing you can do to motivate yourself to stick to it is to plan a trip to a country that speaks that language. This is a great way for you to work hard on learning it, as you know, you will be able to take a lovely trip after a while.


Learning a new language the right way

Anyone and everyone is going to make mistakes when learning a new language. This is exactly why you should not feel discouraged when getting something wrong. The whole point of making a mistake is to learn from in and improve. Therefore, you should always use your mistakes as a means of becoming better and better at the language you are learning.

Which mistakes did you make when trying to learn a new language?