The past year or so has been hard on the budgets of a lot of people and their families. For many, the idea of taking time and money to learn a new language might seem something of a luxury. The truth is, however, that studying a new language needn't cost an arm and a leg. In fact, it could be among the most affordable projects you undertake in the new year.
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In today's blog, we'll be explaining how you can learn a new language on a shoestring budget in 4 easy steps. You'll be surprised to know that many of the best resources are actually free.
📱 Step 1: Start with Free Apps
There are an abundance of smartphone apps that offer you free resources for language learning. All you need to do is search them out in your particular app store and you can be on your way. Some of the best include:
- Duolingo: Dozens of languages offered in a unique competitive study environment that's like no other app you've tried. It's fun and productive ¨C the holy grail!
- Quizlet: For those who like learning with flashcards and games, Quizlet is another great free option to give your language learning a kickstart.
These apps are a great way to put language learning right in your pocket so you can learn on the go whenever you have a spare moment. Better yet, they don't cost you a penny to use and enjoy.
👨🏽🏫 Step 2: Use an Online Tutor
Online learning presents many advantages over the traditional classroom space, one of which is affordability. While college and training center classroom experiences are costly, the online space cuts out a lot of the overheads that make traditional learning more expensive. Working one-on-one with an online tutor helps you financially in two ways.
First, the lessons themselves will be more affordable and likely much better value than anything you'll get in a classroom environment. Second, the one-on-one class setting means you get all the teacher's time and attention, which should help you progress faster. That means you can achieve a lot more in relatively fewer hours.
One final tip on using an online tutor is to always ensure it's a native speaker of your target language. It helps to make sure that you're always getting the most current language and not wasting time either learning defunct words or concepts, or using time developing bad pronunciation habits.
🤝 Step 3: Form a Language Partnership
They have spent years telling us that the Internet and social media is all about connecting people all around the world. You may not have always felt that in your own experience, but when you want to accomplish something like learning a new language, it's all possible. Through social media, you can connect with groups and contacts who speak your target language and who may also want to learn your mother tongue. Between you, you can form a language partnership.
Usually, this kind of partnership means spending time in contact with each other, each offering some instruction in your own language and helping each other to gain higher levels of language ability. The mutually beneficial relationship has an added benefit, namely that it's usually free!
🖥️ Step 4: Take Advantage of Online Resources
Besides your smartphone apps, there is a wealth of additional free material you can find online. Head to YouTube, to Podcasts, or even to free and open language resource-sharing sites to find materials that are 100-percent free, and that you can use whenever you have free time.
YouTube in particular is useful due to the sheer volume of quality and varied material you can find. From direct tutorial videos to TV and news footage that you can use for listening practice, it's all on there. Channels like LangFocus, for example, help you to better understand different languages of the world before you start studying them. Other channels like the BBC World Service (English) or France 24 (French), among others, can provide a treasure trove of listening and reference material to grow your vocabulary and hone other core skills.
⛰️ Spend a Little, Get a Lot
As you can see, learning a new language on a budget is more than do-able. Whatever your target language, there seems to be a wealth of free or cut-cost resources to support your learning. Better yet, our current world has also never been better equipped to supply affordable online tuition to those seeking the joy of learning.
🎉 Get started!
Are you interested in really, finally learning a new language? Here at LanguageConvo we connect you with a professional, native-speaking teacher for affordable, customized private lessons. Get started with a 100% free trial lesson by clicking here.