LinguaTrek - speaking http://www.linguatrek.com/taxonomy/term/60/0 en How to find a language exchange partner http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/how-to-find-a-language-exchange-partner <div class="diag align-right" style="float: right; width: 160px; margin: 10px 0 10px 10px"><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Large/image/2012/08/searching.jpg" rel="lightbox"><img src="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Small/image/2012/08/searching.jpg" alt="Man and boy searching for something" title="Photo by ll.wynn" /></a><div class="caption"><a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/23045955@N02/3267952345">Photo</a> by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/23045955@N02/">ll.wynn</a></div></div> <p>Two weeks ago <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/4-tips-for-effective-language-exchange">I gave some tips</a> for starting a <em>language exchange.</em></p> <p>Language exchange is where you communicate (either <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/02/immersion-tips-how-to-meet-natives#language-exchange">in person</a> or <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/11/how-to-practice-speaking-over-the-internet">over the internet</a>) with a native speaker of the language you are learning, who is also learning your native language.</p> <p>In the comments, <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/jak-prawid%C5%82owo-rozpocz%C4%85%C4%87-wymian%C4%99-j%C4%99zykow%C4%85#comment-2870">someone wrote</a> (translated from Polish):</p> <blockquote> <p>It's easy to look for more language exchange partners if your native language is English. After all, the whole world is learning that language. What to do if no one wants to learn Polish (<em>ed: this commenter's native language is Polish</em>). I don't think I'd find even one Swede who wanted to learn Polish.</p> </blockquote> <p>I've heard this opinion expressed many times before - basically every time I bring up language exchange.</p> <p>I agree it's harder if your native language is less popular. But it's definitely still possible to find someone online!</p> <p><strong>Read more for three tips on how to find a language exchange partner online!</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/how-to-find-a-language-exchange-partner" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/how-to-find-a-language-exchange-partner#comments language exchange language learning speaking Tue, 28 Aug 2012 15:00:00 +0000 David Snopek 200 at http://www.linguatrek.com Speaking strategies: Respond to everything! http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/speaking-strategies-respond-to-everything <div class="diag align-right" style="float: right; width: 131px; margin: 10px 0 10px 10px"><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Large/image/2012/08/onthephone.jpg" rel="lightbox"><img src="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Small/image/2012/08/onthephone.jpg" alt="Girl talking her cellphone" title="Photo by Eddy Van 3000" /></a><div class="caption"><a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/23566085@N00/4034975331">Photo</a> by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/e3000/">Eddy Van 3000</a></div></div> <p>In the <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/04/3-steps-to-speaking-a-language-fluently-ebook-excerpt">introduction</a> to <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/05/natural-language-learning-my-free-ebook-is-finished">my FREE ebook</a>, I mention that developing <em>speaking strategies</em> is a very important step in reaching "fluency" (although, I'm <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2010/11/lets-stop-saying-fluent-fluently-and-fluency-too">not fond</a> of that word!) in a foreign language.</p> <p>But unfortunately, this wasn't the topic of the ebook so I didn't discuss it then - which is why I'm trying to focus on it on my blog now (see <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/tags/speaking-strategies">previous articles</a>).</p> <p><strong>Some situations are more difficult to speak in than others!</strong></p> <p>Two of the most difficult are:</p> <ul> <li>Over the telephone, and</li> <li>In group of native speakers.</li> </ul> <p>Even though I've been learning Polish for over 5 years, I <em>still</em> personally have trouble in both of these situations. But the strategy I'm going to give you today helps tremendously!</p> <p><strong>Read more to find out what it is!</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/speaking-strategies-respond-to-everything" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/speaking-strategies-respond-to-everything#comments language learning speaking speaking strategies Tue, 21 Aug 2012 15:00:00 +0000 David Snopek 197 at http://www.linguatrek.com How to start a language exchange on the right foot http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/how-to-start-a-language-exchange-on-the-right-foot <div class="diag align-right" style="float: right; width: 160px; margin: 10px 0 10px 10px"><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Large/image/2012/08/sharing.jpg" rel="lightbox"><img src="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Small/image/2012/08/sharing.jpg" alt="Two hamsters sharing a carrot" title="Language exchange is about sharing! Photo by ryancr" /></a><div class="caption">Language exchange is about sharing! <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/33128961@N00/142455033">Photo</a> by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/ryanr/">ryancr</a></div></div> <p><em>Nothing</em> can replace speaking your target language with a native speaker. A "language exchange" (sometimes called "tandem") is a great way to practice with a native speaker who is also learning your native language.</p> <p>During each meeting with your language exchange partner, you take turns speaking both languages. Unlike classes or working with a teacher, the meetings are friendly, informal and (because they are mutually beneficial to you both) absolutely free. ;-)</p> <p><strong>Don't worry: you don't need to live near native speakers or <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/07/you-dont-need-to-live-in-a-foreign-country-to-learn">in the country</a> where the language is spoken!</strong></p> <p>As I've written before, you can do a language exchange both <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/02/immersion-tips-how-to-meet-natives#language-exchange">in person</a> or <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/11/how-to-practice-speaking-over-the-internet">over the internet</a>.</p> <p>I recently received this question via the <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com">contact form</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>I've been studying Polish for about a year now and just took the step of reaching out to a Polish speaker on the <a href="http://language-exchange.gregloby.com/">Language|Exchange Project</a>. I'm a little nervous about it, but I figured it will only help me get better. I was wondering if you had any advice on how to get the most out of the exchange.</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>Great question!</strong></p> <p>I've been doing language exchanges for several years (with both Polish and Russian) and I've definitely had my share of bad experiences. Through trial and error, I've come up with some ways to make my language exchanges as effective as possible. In this article, I give a few tips to help you avoid some common pitfalls.</p> <p><strong>Read more for four tips on starting a new language exchange!</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/how-to-start-a-language-exchange-on-the-right-foot" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/08/how-to-start-a-language-exchange-on-the-right-foot#comments language exchange language learning mailbag speaking Tue, 14 Aug 2012 15:00:00 +0000 David Snopek 195 at http://www.linguatrek.com Do I NEED to speak from day one? http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/05/do-i-need-to-speak-from-day-one <div class="diag align-right" style="float: right; width: 160px; margin: 10px 0 10px 10px"><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Large/image/2012/05/butterfly.jpg" rel="lightbox"><img src="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Small/image/2012/05/butterfly.jpg" alt="Butterfly" title="Photo by Gustavo Durán" /></a><div class="caption"><a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/67662120@N00/2986020135">Photo</a> by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/trekman/">Gustavo Durán</a></div></div> <p>This is topic widely discussed and disagreed upon in the language learning community. One of biggest advocates of speaking immediately is Benny Lewis, author of the <a href="http://www.fluentin3months.com/">Fluent in 3 Months</a> blog and creator of the <a href="http://speakfromday1.com/faq/">Speak From Day 1</a> video course.</p> <p>In the <a href="http://speakfromday1.com/faq/">FAQ</a> for that product, he writes: (<em>some emphasis added</em>)</p> <blockquote> <p>Rather than read through the guide and watch all the videos to find out my one major 'secret', I can tell you right now: <strong>you need to speak the language immediately.</strong></p> <p>No years of studying grammar, no expensive and complicated software, no "magic pill" to master a language while you sleep, you just need to speak it. Speak it regularly, speak it confidently, and speak it immediately. <strong>The more you speak, the quicker you will improve.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Now, I'm a BIG fan of Benny. He recently gave me the amazing opportunity to write a <a href="http://www.fluentin3months.com/polish/">guest post on his blog</a>. </p><p>But in this particular point, I disagree. I don't think you <em>NEED</em> to speak from day one.</p> <p><strong>Read more to find out why!</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/05/do-i-need-to-speak-from-day-one" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/05/do-i-need-to-speak-from-day-one#comments Benny Lewis fear of speaking language learning speaking Tue, 29 May 2012 15:00:00 +0000 David Snopek 160 at http://www.linguatrek.com 3 super simple "speaking strategies" http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/05/3-super-simple-speaking-strategies <p>In the <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/04/3-steps-to-speaking-a-language-fluently-ebook-excerpt">introduction</a> to <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/05/natural-language-learning-my-free-ebook-is-finished">my FREE ebook</a>, I talked about the three steps to speaking a language "fluently" (although, I'm <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2010/11/lets-stop-saying-fluent-fluently-and-fluency-too">not fond</a> of this word!): (1) get the language in your brain, (2) overcome your fear of speaking and (3) practice speaking. (<em>Like I mentioned in the ebook, these steps can be done simultaneously</em>)</p> <div class="diag align-right" style="float: right; width: 150px; margin: 10px 0 10px 10px"><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Large/image/2012/05/battleship.jpg" rel="lightbox"><img src="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Small/image/2012/05/battleship.jpg" alt="The game: Battleship" title="There is strategy in speaking too! Photo by Joe King." /></a><div class="caption">There is strategy in speaking too! <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/28446991@N00/1363094393">Photo</a> by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/jking89/">Joe King</a>.</div></div> <p>Because the ebook discusses only the first of those steps, I've decided that I'm going to spend some time on my blog covering the next two. Today, I'm going to talk about #3: <em>practicing speaking.</em></p> <p>In this step, the goal is to develop and practice "speaking strategies" like <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/02/what-to-do-when-you-dont-know-a-word">circumlocution</a> (for when you don't know a word), various conversational phrases to keep things flowing and even non-verbal tricks to make people more comfortable when speaking with you.</p> <p><strong><em>Silence</em> is the one of the most uncomfortable things that can happen in a conversation, both for you and your speaking partner.</strong></p> <p>As a learner you might sometimes need a little extra time to process what you've heard or to form your response. But if the train conductor says, "Could you show me your ticket?" and you stare at them for 15 seconds without saying anything, it could get pretty awkward. :-)</p> <p>In this article, I'm going to describe 3 super simple speaking strategies to avoid silence!</p> <p><strong>Read more learn what they are!</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/05/3-super-simple-speaking-strategies" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2012/05/3-super-simple-speaking-strategies#comments language learning speaking speaking strategies Mon, 21 May 2012 15:00:00 +0000 David Snopek 156 at http://www.linguatrek.com How to practice speaking over the internet http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/11/how-to-practice-speaking-over-the-internet <div class="diag align-right" style="float: right; width: 160px; margin: 10px 0 10px 10px"><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Large/image/2011/11/artofconversation.jpg" rel="lightbox"><img src="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Small/image/2011/11/artofconversation.jpg" alt="Two women talking" title="The art of conversation. Photo by Duncan Harris." /></a><div class="caption">The art of conversation. <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/29057345@N04/4107333458">Photo</a> by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/people/duncanh1/">Duncan Harris</a>.</div></div> <p>Nothing can replace practicing your language with a native speaker. But what if no native speakers live in your city? Not everyone has the means to <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/07/you-dont-need-to-live-in-a-foreign-country-to-learn">travel to another country</a>.</p> <p><strong>But that doesn't mean you can't practice speaking!</strong></p> <p>I've written about <a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/02/immersion-tips-how-to-meet-natives#language-exchange">language exchange</a> in the past.</p> <p>This is where you meet with someone who's native language is the language you are learning and your native language is the language they are learning. For the first half of the meeting you talk in one language and for the second half you talk in the other.</p> <p><strong>And the best part is that this is something you can do entirely over the internet, using voice chat software like <a href="http://www.skype.com/">Skype</a>!</strong></p> <p><strong>Read more to learn how!</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/11/how-to-practice-speaking-over-the-internet" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/11/how-to-practice-speaking-over-the-internet#comments language exchange language learning speaking Wed, 09 Nov 2011 14:15:00 +0000 David Snopek 100 at http://www.linguatrek.com How to overcome your fear of speaking http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/05/how-to-overcome-your-fear-of-speaking <div class="diag align-right" style="float: right; width: 160px; margin: 10px 0 10px 10px"><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Large/image/2011/05/panic.jpg" rel="lightbox"><img src="http://www.linguatrek.com/sites/www.linguatrek.com/files/imagecache/Small/image/2011/05/panic.jpg" alt="Woman with panicked look on her face" title="&quot;I want to speak but I'm afraid!&quot; Photo by Nate Steiner." /></a><div class="caption"><em>"I want to speak but I'm afraid!"</em> <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/44124484443@N01/321938695">Photo</a> by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/nate/">Nate Steiner</a>.</div></div> <p><em>No matter how well you know a language, you can't communicate with anyone if you're afraid to use it.</em></p> <p>While it might not seem like this has anything to do with <em>language learning</em>, this is a problem that affects a lot of people. <em>Even me</em>!</p> <p>For a long a time, I was afraid to speak the languages I was learning (Polish and Russian). I still have trouble getting the courage to speak in certain situations (ex. on the telephone) or with certain people. It isn't something that I got over immediately, but I've slowly improved over several years.</p> <p><strong>Read more to learn how I got over my fear of speaking and how <em>you</em> can too!</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/05/how-to-overcome-your-fear-of-speaking" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.linguatrek.com/blog/2011/05/how-to-overcome-your-fear-of-speaking#comments fear of speaking language learning speaking Tue, 24 May 2011 15:00:00 +0000 David Snopek 71 at http://www.linguatrek.com