AFP 40 – 10 Language learning lessons learned so far

In today's episode I'm back doing another solo episode, and this time I'm talking about 10 lessons I've learnt about language learning by interviewing over 30 language learners.

Flying solo

Welcome to Episode 40 of the Actual Fluency Podcast. I'm very excited to be presenting a solo-episode this week, where I dive into 10 things I've learned by interviewing over 30 amazing language learners throughout the year.

This episode is a little different from the usual guest-interview format, and so I'm very happy to hear your feedback on it. Is it interesting? Boring? Too short? Too long? Any feedback is welcomed in the comments box below.

I'm really heappy that you are listening to my podcast and together we will learn many languages. I'm sure of it.

The Episode

Show Notes

In this episode you will hear about:

  • How never giving up is the number one way to suceed
  • How and why tutoring helps tremendously
  • How getting out and socialising can boost your learning
  • Why it's important to actually do some work in language learning
  • How we can use vanity as a motivator
  • How to learn languages more efficiently
  • My story of learning Russian and some of the mistakes I did.

Episode Resources

This lists the resources relevant to the episode. For other language learning resources please go to the resource page for more information.

  • speekolango says:

    Hi Chris !

    I really enjoyed this episode ! Not too long, not too short and certainly not too boring 🙂 Since I’m also studying Russian, I can relate to a lot of stuff that you mention.

    Getting a tutor is definitely one of my new year’s resolutions. How did you end up with yours ? Did you try out a few or did someone recommend her ?

    • Chris Broholm says:

      Thanks for the nice words, as always 🙂

      I was simply recommended her and got lucky in the first attempt, but if you go over to Benny’s blog, he just posted a huge guide on what selection criteria to use, he says it much better than I could ever say.

      • speekolango says:

        I saw his tweet and read the article, but thanks anyway.

        Do you listen a lot to Russian audio ? Apart from your Pimsleur adventures I don’t recall you ever mentioning it. I used Audacity to cut out the dialogs for each chapter of the Teach Yourself book and listened to them over and over again.

  • Julia vaconsin says:

    Your practicability theory is every so slightly contradictory to your wish to teach people danish, no? :p

    • Chris Broholm says:

      Very much 🙂

      I even wrote a post about why I don’t think Danish is worth learning, but in the end people are (luckily) different and I see it as a privilige to be given an “obscure” language that I can help people learn, even if the practical aspect for most people is somewhat limited.

  • Celine says:

    Learning a language because it’s so cool – pleading guilty !
    I do that for russian and danish… Do I have a true purpose ? Do I have projects to go work there ? Nope – not yet. It’s just because it sounds nice and it’s fun and it’s something people around me don’t do… And we’re back to vanity 🙂
    Actually the main true reason why I begin learning a language is frustration. I hear it, can’t understand it, and get frustrated. Let’s learn it !

    After the two russian sessions I did on italki, I concluded that :
    1. In order to benefit from the sessions, I need to do a lot of work inbetween ;
    2. As I am already learning danish everyday, and working, it would be too much work to do it seriously. And I am still in the “fun part” of the danish learning so I don’t want to pause it
    3. Like you, I can’t learn correctly more than one language at once. So let’s put russian aside for next year. I would say : russian from july 2015 to june 2016, and then, onto Korean!

    • Chris Broholm says:

      Hehe Celine, I agree with you on all points. I also agree on focusing down one’s efforts on fewer languages, might make you more succesful in the long run. The point you make: 1. In order to benefit from the sessions, I need to do a lot of work inbetween

      Is actually one of the biggest reasons I think regular tutoring is so efficient in boosting my own Russian learning. Because I know to do better next week, I need to actually do some work in between 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by, as always. Really appreciate it

      **edit: I think vanity is a much bigger part of language learning than most care to admit, but I don’t see this as particularly negative. That’s just how we function.

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