Learning a new language is not always an easy thing to do however, when you relocate to a country that doesn’t speak the same language as you.
It is vital that you do your best to try to speak a few words at least. There are many ways to go about it, so here are 10 tips to making it all a bit easier!
1. Read Road Signs! To learn the alphabet, you must first study the letters and if you are already living in Belguim, you should practice reading road signs whilst out and about, this will help you remember and recognize the letters. Although the alphabet is similar to the English alphabet, there are slight differences in the way that the letters are pronounced, so learn the pronunciations of the letters before you do anything else.
2. Remember! In any foreign conversation, you will hear a lot of unknown words to begin with. There will be words that you hear more than others and when you hear these words you must remember, check them, remember and use them. Remember the word, check their meaning and after using the word a few times, you will have learned a word.
3. Learn basic grammar to begin with. Many language teachers choose to plunge in to the grammar without even teaching you a single word. Many people will agree that it is best to learn just a few basic grammar rules such as the ‘to be’ rule and focus on learning words and phrases, the grammar will come later.
4. Learn words that resemble your own language. For example, there are some words in the French language that are the same as English, the same word with a different meaning or sound similar. Learning these words means that you will have learned many words easily and quickly without even trying.
5. Read subtitles! If you have the chance to watch films with French or Flemish subtitles, then this will help you to pick up some new words and phrases every time you sit and watch a film or tv series. Sometimes the film or programme may be in English with French or Flemish subtitles, or if the subtitles are in English then this is also another good way to learn the language, by listening to the words and reading them in English.
6. Word of the day. Write on a piece of paper a new word for the day or week and stick it on a door/the refrigerator or any place where you will see it often. Every time you see it, read it and practice saying it, by the end of the day or week you will have learned a new word.
7. Listen to music. Belgium has its own type of music, which is very popular there. Listening to the national music whilst you work, will help you to pick up phrases, slang and words by listening to the words along with the cool rhythm.
8. Talk with the locals. Not only is this a great way to integrate with the local community, but practicing speaking the language is one of the most important parts of learning the lingo. Just passing the time of day with people you meet at the shops, in the street or on the bus, will help you learn pronunciation, word order, grammar, words and day to day life.
9. Learn the alphabet and listen to people speaking. This is very important to ensure that you will be understood when you talk to people. Although the alphabet may be quite phonetical, it is important to learn how to pronounce the letters in the alphabet and when you know this, you will have no trouble being understood or pronouncing words.
10. Last but not least, writing! anybody that lives in a rural area will know that few people in villages and rural areas will speak English, so initially this can be difficult when you are doing the daily shopping. Practice the words of the things on your shopping list and also write your shopping list in French or Flemish. Keep referring to it, as it is using French or Flemish language in every day life that helps you to learn more.
Okay so there are 10 tips on learning the language. Language lessons can also be found in many towns and cities or you can even ask a friend to teach you. Many foreigners learning a new language find that socializing and communicating is the easiest and most enjoyable way to learn the lingo, but try whatever works for you.