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As a global citizen, understanding and speaking just your lingua franca isn’t enough these days. It’s important to invest time and energy in learning another language like French, Mandarin or Spanish, just to name a few. Not only would it help you communicate with speakers in Nigeria and abroad, it’ll also be an added bonus when looking for a job. Here are a few tips to help you on your language learning journey: 1. Memorize common everyday words in your chosen language: This is a great starting point, especially when you’re completely new to the language. Colourful flashcards (pre-made or made by you) are good for learning the spelling of words and revising what you have learnt while on-the-go. 2. Read literature and news: When you’ve succeeded in learning words via flashcards, step up your reading with credible materials like online newspapers and magazines written in the language. With the help of a language dictionary, these learning aides are great for identifying idioms and increasing your vocabulary. 3. Use online learning resources: YouTube and DuoLingo are two great mediums to learn with, and they’re free. YouTube has a great collection of formal and funny short videos which would help you to depict how the language is used in everyday settings. You will also get familiar with the pronunciations of different words if videos are watched daily. 4. Converse with a native speaker: Speaking the chosen language is vital to learning it well and remembering the words. This is where a native speaker comes in, or at least a fellow Nigerian who speaks the language fluently. If you don’t know anyone personally, try asking someone in your social circle for a contact. An alternative is to subscribe to programmes online that will connect you to a speaker via Skype for a fee. 5. Join a language class: A class is a nice way of learning with others in an interactive atmosphere. You’ll also have a tutor to guide you through your learning journey which is a definite plus.   With these tips and constant practice, you will learn any language easily and effectively. Remember to be patient with yourself during the learning process as nothing good comes quickly. Have fun and enjoy every second of your journey!     About the Writer: Ify Halim is a young Creative and a promoter of values through the force that is writing.  Follow her on twitter: @MissHalim

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This article was first published on 18th March 2015

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