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The Best Language-Learning Strategy for Beginners

The way you should be approaching learning a new language depends a whole lot on your current level. In this blog post, I will tell you what the best language-learning strategy is for you if you're a beginner.

The following recommendations are based on years of researching actual language-learners who reach the best results learning with the Speakly app. Do the same things that our most successful learners do, and you too can learn a new language in just a few months! ☝️

It's all about building a strong foundation

As a beginner, your whole mission is to build a strong foundation for the language. There are specific elements in your daily studies that you must integrate into your daily schedule.

These crucial elements for beginners are:

  • Learning the most relevant vocabulary (this is a priority).

  • Immersing yourself in the language with daily listening.

  • Reviewing what you've learned.

  • Avoiding parsing grammar as a beginner.

Let's discuss all these elements one by one so you can understand why you should be doing exactly these things and nothing else.

Learn the most relevant vocabulary

Speakly is the only language-learning app that teaches you the most relevant words and sentences of your target language in order of their importance in real-life conversations. This might sound difficult, but it's actually super simple: Speakly teaches you the words that people actually use and doesn’t waste time teaching you words that won’t help you as much. 👇

If you want to better understand how this specific methodology works, check out this blog post.

It may come as a surprise to you that learning only the 300 most relevant words of a language (with Speakly) provides you with the vocabulary that covers 42% of all real-life conversations. This means that your language skills will develop A LOT. Especially at the start, it's important to learn five or ten new words every single day to build a proper habit and set yourself up for success. 🚀

To read more about why you should be learning just five to ten new words every single day to build a strong learning habit—especially as a beginner— check out this blog post.

💥Summary: Prioritize reaching your daily vocabulary goal every single day, even if that means learning just five new words.💥

Immerse yourself in the language with daily listening

The research is clear: to develop your language skills quickly, you must have a daily listening routine in place—otherwise, it won't work! So, it's vital that you take five to ten minutes every single day to listen to one of Speakly’s listening exercises.

It doesn't matter whether you understand the exercise to which you're listening. Really! Just start listening to the language from day one—enjoy the way it sounds—and you'll begin to understand the language more and more.

The reason why daily listening is so important is actually very simple. If you don't create an environment that mimics the need for new foreign language skills, your brain and memory won’t be interested in cooperating with you to develop these skills.

If you want to read further about how daily listening works and why it's the secret to successful language-learning, check out this blog post.

💥Summary: If you don't complete the daily listening exercises, you won't develop your language skills nearly as quickly. So, be sure to start listening from day one. Make it a daily habit to listen to Speakly exercises while driving, going for a walk, or working out.💥

Review what you've learned

As you'll be learning at least five to ten new words every single day, you'll be giving your memory a lot to work on. So, be sure to review learned words and sentences every other day to reinforce your skills. 😉

Speakly doesn't just teach you individual words—it teaches you full sentences and phrases that you can start using in your daily life right away, so be sure to learn as many of these full sentences as possible.

But don’t worry too much about adhering to a strict reviewing schedule—you can be sure that Speakly is helping you along the way. The Speakly algorithm is also sure to repeat the words and sentences with which you don't yet feel comfortable. But even so, return to the Speakly review section now and then to review ten or twenty useful phrases and sentences. 🚀

💥Summary: Even though reviewing words isn’t quite as important as reaching your daily goal and doing the daily listening exercise, try to review ten to twenty words every other day. See how far you’ve come!💥

Avoid parsing grammar as a beginner

You probably think that I must’ve written the above title incorrectly. What do I mean by avoiding grammar? Grammar is, after all, a very important part of a language.

Yes, it is. But what we see from years of researching successful learners is that people who don't "demotivate" themselves with the complexities of grammar at the beginning of their studies will be more motivated and consistent, thereby reaching better results.

This may come as quite a surprise, but it's actually very logical. We see from the research that people who think that the language is difficult won’t have nearly as positive results as people who feel progress—and it's not even close! Indeed, grammar might feel so complex and demotivating that people lose hope that they’ll ever learn all of it; they start to feel pressure to speak “perfectly.”

In this blog post, I've described how such a quest for perfection actually holds you back from achieving great results—it does much more harm than you think.

💥Summary: Although it contradicts what we’re taught in school, don't dig into the complexities of grammar until you’re on an intermediate level. Give yourself the time to build up the foundation of the language first; otherwise, you'll lose motivation. 💥

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Cornelis Blokland
Cornelis Blokland
Mar 01, 2021

What is the purpose of the Live Situations. Should I try to memorise conversations or is it enough to understand them somewhat if not exactly. When should I choose easy and when should I choose hard?

Ott Ojamets
Ott Ojamets
Mar 04, 2021
Replying to

Hey! LIVE-meetings are created to give you the feeling of real-life conversations, so after reaching your daily goal I'd recommend you to go through a few of them, to make sure you have such daily immersion on a daily basis :)

Regarding the "hard" and "easy" - as soon as you feel that you are confident about a certain sentence or conversation, then mark it as "Easy".

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