How Gestures and Images Improve Language Learning

For most of us, learning a new language generally involves a lot of textbook work. We spend hours reading, going over lists of new vocab, and studying up on proper grammar structures. And while these are all important parts of learning a new tongue, you’ll be surprised to know that there really is a lot more to learning a language than just the good ol’ reading and writing portion of it. In fact, according to studies, using gestures and images may just be the perfect way to round off your educational process:

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Why Hand Gestures?

Scientists have discovered links between language learning and sensory perceptions which show that incorporating gestures into your language learning will make the process easier. How does it work? Well, studies revealed that when individuals made a gesture directly after learning a new word, they were more likely to recall it later than those who only listened to the word or watched someone else say the word and use the sign. By making a gesture, you are creating additional input which your brain can easily associate and store away with the new vocab.

So what can you do to incorporate self-expressed gestures into your language learning? It’s simple really. Hold up your left hand when saying ‘left’, right hand when ‘right’, point to your temple when recalling the word ‘think’, and so on. Or, check out these already established gestures to liven up the learning process. The possibilities are endless; you only need to get creative with it!

Photo_2 (5)Image via PhotoPin

How Can Pictures Help?

There’s a reason why a lot of beginning language learners turn to children’s books to help solidify early foreign vocabulary. Children’s books usually feature a lot of images, making it easy to build associations between new words and their meanings. According to research, visual aids are one of the best ways to improve language learning. Those who use images and pictures while picking up on new words are much more likely to remember these later on as opposed to those who simply read or say these words aloud.

Enriching your language learning by using pictures and images is easy! Just be careful to observe the images as you are listening to or saying the words. Even learning one new word a day using images can do wonders for your learning process!

Even as research develops new ways for us to better learn new languages, there really is no shortcut when it comes to picking up German, French, or any other tongue. No matter what, you should be sure to give yourself the best educational resources you can through language classes or simply start off with a free online placement tests. Discovering teachers who will help you to create your own unique learning process will ensure that you can incorporate reading, writing, images, and gestures to help you successfully achieve all your language goals. Send Language Trainers an inquiry to find out more about language courses in your area!

 

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