Knowing how to speak Spanish, French or Chinese can make it easier to get a job with a major company. It can also help you make the most of your travels to countries that speak that language. However, it will likely take weeks, months or even years to speak fluently in a language that you are not familiar with. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you can’t make steady progress over the course of just a few lessons. Let’s take a look at what you can do to get the most out of your time with your tutor.
Give Your Teacher Your Undivided Attention
Your teacher can’t help you learn unless you give that person your undivided attention during each lesson. In many cases, online language tutors have some background in the field of education. This means that they can tailor their teaching methods to best meet your learning style. Pros if you are a student, it is possible to find discounted lessons online.
Furthermore, they may be able to tailor their teaching style to help overcome any learning disabilities that you might have. For instance, if you have trouble concentrating for long periods of time, your tutor might allow you to take breaks every few minutes. It’s worth noting that most lessons are designed to be interactive, which can make it easier for anyone to stay engaged throughout.
Spend Plenty of Time Studying Between Lessons
There is a good chance that your teacher will give you homework assignments to complete between lessons. Even if you aren’t given formal assignments, you will likely be encouraged to complete various tasks aimed at helping you retain the material learned during each session.
These tasks may include watching a movie or reading a book that is produced in the language that you are studying. You may also be asked to write a letter to a friend in your second language or create other content that your tutor can critique.
Of course, doing more than what your instructor asks of you can help to speed up your learning curve. For example, you could have a conversation with your neighbor who speaks Spanish or order food from a Chinese restaurant in Chinese. Taking these steps can help you better assess how well you are actually learning the material that is presented to you during each tutoring session.
Create an Environment Conducive to Learning
It’s important that you have access to a location where you won’t encounter many distractions. For example, you may want to do your independent study work in a library where you can expect everyone around you to be quiet. Alternatively, you can plan on completing your homework later in the evening after others in your home, apartment or dorm have gone to sleep.
This will allow you to fully engage with the material that you are trying to read or understand. It can also make it easier to concentrate while trying to write a letter, report or other type of content in a language that you have yet to fully master.
Ideally, any location where you choose to study will be at a comfortable temperature and humidity level. If a room is too hot or cold, it may be difficult to concentrate on what you’re trying to do. If a room is too humid, you’ll spend more time sliding off your chair than you will getting work done. If a room is too dry, you’ll be too itchy or frizzy to focus on your studies.
Finally, you may want to consider eating before you study as it can be difficult to stay focused on an empty stomach. It may also be a good idea to have easy access to water, soda or any other nonalcoholic beverage that can quench your thirst.
What’s Motivating You to Take These Classes?
As a general rule, it’s easier to be successful at something when you know why you’re doing it. For example, if you are learning Spanish in the hopes of getting a job with a multinational company, the prospect of greater career advancement should provide incentive to work hard.
If you are learning French so that you can engage with the cute guy or girl in the apartment next door, the possibility of finding true love could be what compels you to succeed. Regardless of what your reason for learning a new language is, don’t forget that you’re spending your own money to do so. That alone should be motivation enough to work hard and get the most from each class.
Speaking multiple languages can make you a more interesting and marketable person. This may be true even if you aren’t necessarily fluent in anything other than your native tongue. Therefore, if you are looking to make friends and influence people, it may be in your best interest to start learning to speak Spanish, Russian or other popular dialects. Ideally, you’ll take whatever steps are necessary to ensure that you’re able to accomplish this goal in a timely manner.