How to fit language learning into your workday
Language learning doesn’t have to be a daunting chore that you keep putting off until next week because you can’t find the time! Just by adding a few minutes to your daily routine, you can practice your target language without having to clock-watching while you do. Here are easy some ways to fit language learning into your workday; none of which need to feel like work!
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Listen to music
Whether you need something to sing along to on the drive to work or have a playlist to get you through a session at the gym, music can be a great way to inject a little language learning into your day. You can look up the charts in other countries that speak your target language, use an app like TuneIn to discover radio stations from around the world, and explore what artists there are in your genre. There are thousands of music videos on Youtube that have your favourite songs with subtitles in other languages, and so many lyric videos for new music just waiting for you to hear it! Who doesn’t have time for a little karaoke when waiting for the kettle to boil or if you’re browsing through Youtube anyway?
Everyone knows the Duolingo owl will get you if you don’t get your daily language practice. Though as well as Duolingo there are hundreds of language learning apps that will help you get in a few minutes of practice no matter how busy your schedule; busuu and Memrise to name but a few. On hold for a call and scrolling through Twitter? Waiting for an email before you can continue with a task? Just need a minute away from work to let your brain think of something else? A language learning app will help! These apps give you small, achievable goals that boost your confidence in the shortest amount of time available. And if you have a competitive streak then why not level up against friends?
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Flashcards, post-its, and other memory aids
So long as your company doesn’t have a particularly strict tidy desk policy, you can make your desk space a little haven for language learning! Whether there are keywords you are struggling with, a vocabulary list you want to memorise, or a grammar point that you want to practice, having visual aids like brightly coloured flashcards or post-its around you give you something to focus on other than work up when you look up from your current tasks. And if this isn’t possible at work, then try it at home instead. A reminder on the fridge for food vocabulary, a post-it on the bedroom mirror for phrases you might use on a night out… there are so many possibilities!
If your idea of getting away from your desk is simply getting away from work, we hear you; we too are very attached to our computers! Though instead of heading straight for your usual social media of choice (or all of them) why not find a blog on a subject you are interested in instead – in your target language? Of course, the first few articles might be a little on the challenging side if you aren’t used to reading large chunks of text, but with a little help from a translation tool and a lot of patience, your five minute break from whatever you’re working on can be informative, fun, and help you learn language at the same time. Why wouldn’t you want that for yourself?
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The same is true of books! If your lunch break is typically a retreat into another world, then how about making that retreat into another world that speaks another language? If you are new to the language, don’t be afraid, ashamed, or embarrassed to pick up a great children’s book in your target language. If you are more confident, then check bestseller lists in a country that speaks your language to find out what your next read should be. If you really can’t picture having a few minutes to spare every day for learning a language, we hope that at least you will find the time to have a few minutes just for you. Reading a book in another language means you can do both!
If you would like to get a little more guidance on how to fit learning a language into your day, why not get in contact to see how our courses could help? Our courses are tailormade to your needs and schedule; drop us a quick enquiry and see what we can help you achieve!