- Posted by Stephen Whiteley
- On 18/03/2020
- language, language learning
Learning at home
Some of us are already under lockdown due to COVID-19. And it seems that many more of us may well be dealing with the same restrictions soon. So what are going to do with this time? Some DIY? Try every recipe in your favourite cookbook?! Or, why not learn a foreign language?!
That said, there may be many reasons why you cannot attend a language school for face-to-face lessons with a teacher. Maybe you have to stay at home with your children, or perhaps there isn’t language school close to your home, and you don’t have time to travel to the other side of the city.
This, however, does not mean that you cannot learn foreign languages. Nowadays, with a little help from the internet and modern technology, you can do a lot of learning at home alone.
In this article, we will take a look at some of the best ways to do that. You can use these tips to study from home; to learn a foreign language completely by yourself or to supplement any face-to-face course.
1. Find a teacher online
Learning a foreign language with a teacher is still one of the best ways. On websites like italki.com or verbling.com, you can find teachers of many different foreign languages, from all over the world. Their prices differ — some are quite affordable — and you can usually get a trial lesson for free or at a reduced price.
Learning with a teacher online allows you to have all the benefits of working with a teacher, such as guidance and feedback, in the comfort of your own home.
An additional benefit is that you can be flexible with your schedule and have lessons when, and as often as you can. You can also have lessons with different teachers, focusing on different aspects of the language.
2. Learn with a mobile app
Nowadays, there are many good language learning apps. Some of them are completely free, and others very affordable. Your main difficulty might be choosing one! The good thing is, if you don’t like one app, you can simply delete and try another one, until you find which works best for you.
Some advantages of learning with apps are:
- You can learn anywhere at any time;
- Materials are usually segmented into relatively small portions — you can fit some learning in to even the busiest of schedules;
- You usually get immediate feedback on what you have done right / wrong
- Apps are often gamified and so fun to use — using them does not really feel like learning
3. Do what you already do… in your target language!
Think of the things you do at home for leisure — watching TV, reading news and books, or listening to the radio. You can do many of these things in the foreign language you are learning.
It’s impossible to provide all the links here — there are so many different resources — but here are some examples:
- Listen to the radio from all over the world at Tunein
- Read online newspapers from practically any country in the world with the Online Newspaper List
- Read books for free at Gutenberg
YouTube is worth a separate mention as you can watch practically anything there. From news to humorous sketches, documentaries, tutorials, commentary, and much more. There are creators from all over the world, so you will surely find good content in your target language. YouTube even has a lot of language learning channels!
As you can see, you can easily learn a foreign language in the comfort of your own home. Either completely on your own, or supplementing the classes you take at a language school.
There are many resources available — this article has touched only the tiniest tip of the iceberg — and you can easily find something that matches your target language, level, taste, and schedule.
There is only one thing left to do now: start learning!