Brooke Saward in Paris

This week I will be entering mandatory hotel quarantine in Australia. I'm about to spend two weeks completely alone, in a small hotel room in Sydney. With so much time on my hands, I started thinking about what I could do to make the most of my time. I think what better time to start learning a new language!

Early in the pandemic, I wrote “learn a new language” on my to-do list. But of course one thing led to another and somehow we are already in October! But with so much time available to me, I decided now was the right time to learn a new language. And can you imagine me learning a language other than French!?

For as long as I can remember, I have been obsessed with French culture. Food, wine, country and my greatest love, Paris. But my French has always been limited to general conversation. A fast, convenient bonjour “Do you speak English?” So now that I have more time than I know what to do with, I made it my end of year challenge for myself to learn French with Rosetta Stone.

These are the best tips to help you in your quest to learn a new language.

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The best tips for learning a new language

1. Study with Rosetta Stone

It's no secret that rosetta stone is the leading platform for learning a new language. I also won't make it a secret that this post is sponsored by Rosetta Stone, who offered me the opportunity to use their product and report back to my readers on how my language learning endeavors are unfolding. But actually I always wanted to learn a new language with this platform. I never take the time for it. But now with more than enough time on my hands in quarantine, I have little excuse.

I find this platform very interesting because you type answers, speak back into your computer's microphone and use visual cues to memorize words. It's a holistic learning approach that makes it much easier to remember what you've learned.

2. Practice every day

I have set aside half an hour each day to study French. I find that if I practice every day, my memory improves. It is a scientifically proven learning method that works much better than practicing in chunks. If you set aside time each day, you will find yourself building on your prior knowledge every time. My current schedule is to train half an hour every weekday and if I want it on the weekend I add some extra time.

3. Conversations with other people

It's sometimes difficult to communicate with other people when you're learning a new language, but it's the easiest way to learn! Every year when I visit Paris, I try to speak as many sentences in French as I can before sporting a mischievous grin that screams “English!” The locals will not only appreciate your efforts, they will also offer polite corrections. This is a great way to learn on the go. If you can't travel right now, consider challenging a friend to study with you at the same time. That way you can test each other and keep each other motivated. It's like having a gym buddy!

4. Start with the 100 most common words

I can't speak fluently in other languages ​​(yet) but I can tell you some very random words in some languages. I find learning common words is the best way to travel to non-English speaking countries, so you can at least get by. Greetings are a great way to start, but then challenge yourself to learn words that will work for you like “vegetarian” or “toilet.” You'd be surprised how much of this is useful! Then, in conversations with local residents, you will easily pick up transition words to fill sentences.

5. Use the Rosetta Stone App

If you're anything like me, you'll find yourself having free time to learn a new language at unusual times of day. Say if you're stuck in a line, waiting for a friend at a restaurant or going for a walk… that's time you could spend studying! However you often don't have your laptop handy. Therefore I would recommend downloading the app to be able to study anytime, wherever you are. I became really into studying on the treadmill, walking slowly in the gym.

Brooke Saward in Paris

6. Practice all the time in everyday life

Another great way I've found to learn languages ​​over the years is to practice hard in everyday life. Whether I'm replacing “thank you” with “merci” or greeting my friends with “bonjour,” practicing small words is my way of reminding myself to keep learning. I find this especially useful when studying patisserie, as many of the words are actually French.

7. Don't just focus on the words but also the accent

You can fool a French into thinking you're a local with a heavy Parisian accent, but you won't fool anyone if you keep your British accent. I have always learned most by listening and have discovered rosette stone great course for pronunciation as you hear a French speak to you in real time.

8. Increase your study time

Now that I'm getting serious about learning French (and wanting to speak it fluently), I'm starting to mix a few intensive study sessions with my daily quick lessons. This is a great way to progress because you will notice that you are flexing your muscles more, like when you go to the gym and do a tough final set. Try to think of learning a language the same way. The harder you push at the end, the quicker you'll see results.

9. Look up individual words as you think about them

The more you start learning a language, the more you will seek out the strange and the unusual. I like looking up individual words as I think about it, so I can look at an object in the house and say “assiette” (plate) and so on. Google Translator is a fast way to look up individual words in your own time and continue your own learning. You can also listen to audio to perfect your accent!

10. Try private lessons

Later this month I will be starting private lessons via the Rosetta Stone platform. I was a little too nervous (and honestly not ready) to get started right away, so I set myself a goal of studying for a month before doing the one-on-one sessions. But it's the most efficient way to use your terms when learning a new language. You'll receive real-time feedback and corrections, plus you can ask as many questions as you like.

A very warm thank you for rosette stone for letting me fulfill my French speaking dream! I look forward to getting back to you soon with updates on my progress. While my courses are talented, all opinions are entirely mine.

Brooke Saward

Brooke Saward founded World of Wanderlust as a place to share inspiration from her travels and inspire others to see our world. She now divides her time between adventures abroad and adventures in the kitchen, with a particular weakness for French pastries.

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