How To Pick Up Another Language Without A Book.

I’m sure most of us have purchased books or online programs to learn languages then lost interest after a few weeks. That was my situation many years ago. Reading textbooks just reminded me of school. Yuck. Since then, I’ve tried-and-tested virtually everything to pick up a handful of languages in a creative way. Below are my favourite of the bunch.


In my experience, the best way to pick up a new language is to move/visit a country in person. Hear me out on this one, I’m not saying you need to pack your bags and book a one-way flight. However, if you’re able to work abroad or study abroad then that opportunity is definitely one to consider. In one year of living in Barcelona, I learnt a huge amount of conversational Catalan which is more than I learnt in 5 years studying from a book.


Let’s get traditional by reaching out to a pen-pal. As most of you know, I’m vocal about the fact I have made many incredible friends from my blog or social media. When I was younger, I made friends with a girl in Mexico and we would write to each other in different languages. It made searching words on the web a lot more exciting.


Change the keyboard of your phone to another language. Simple as that.


I urge you to join a language group or social meet-up. These are actually free in most cities/towns. All you need to do is find out what is happening where you live. Don’t know where to start? Try apps like ‘Eventbrite’ to see the activities available in your zone. You’d be surprised how many places have weekly meet-ups to learn new languages or socialize with individuals abroad. I attended a few of these prior to one of my language exams and picked up a ton of phrases only locals would use.


Hey no judgement here! Next time you’re binge-watching something, add subtitles in another language. Feeling up for a challenge? Try it with audio. You’ll be able to hear exactly how a word is meant to be pronounced. It won’t even feel like language-learning.


Put sticky notes on everything around the house. I found this idea particularly useful when trying to describe things in another language, rather than striking up conversation. 


A win-win situation for both parties. If you’re able to rent out a room to exchange students or backpackers, you’ll probably see the guests on a regular basis so can push for conversation...


  1. I really enjoyed reading this blog article, at certain parts i had a laugh cuz i found things relatable for example the crying into a pillow watching netflix 😂like im almost tempted to write my own blog article about learning another language, cuz i have alot of tips that i’d love to share. On the daily i use four languages, two of them im fluent at as i grew up learning them and i have been learning french and german and nowadays i reached this stage where i can litteraly write and talk in them.. with the additional grammer mistakes here or there and obviously me talking at a slower pace because im tryna get it right the first time. I’d hope to read some more of your articles and im excited to read some more on the language ones

      1. I’d consider my native languages polish and english since all my family are polish and so am I, but because we moved to an english speaking country when I was so young i couldn’t possibly remember that move 😅 I was already exposed to the english language and even more so when I was enrolled to a school at the age of 5. So I grew up speaking both essentially, but I think I was always better at english than polish, probably because I never went to any school in Poland and the obvious reason being that polish is just one of the most difficult languages out there😂. French and German I began learning in secondary school but I was always in love with learning languages so even besides school, I study them on my own for my own benefit. Recently I began learning Tengwar, aka elvish, its not a real language unless your from the middle earth from the ring but i liked the idea of it idk let me know what you think and have you ever thought about learning any more languages ? 😂, I’m glad you would like to read a blog like that on my page, once I have one like that up, i’d give you a shout

  2. Yes! Watching shows with Spanish subtitles on has been my life lately. Have you used the Google chrome app Language Learning with Netflix? You can watch shows with both your target language and your native language and you can set it up to highlight common words or pause after each sentence so you can really work on your hearing. I can read decently well in French and Spanish but speaking and listening are so much harder when you don’t have people to practice with!

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