How To: Learning a New Language

As I have mentioned a few times, Tyler and I will be going to France this summer! So, we decided to try and learn French, in part because I think it would be fun to learn a new language together, and in part because it’s respectful to the country and culture we’re visiting.

I knew when we started that we would not be fluent by the time we go to France, definitely far from it, but I hoped we’d know enough French to get around and have basic conversation. To this end, we found a French tutor on craigslist, and got started!

Our first French tutor was…well, not good. So we hired another one, and she is great! Bi-weekly, we practice our French conversations and pronunciations with her, and it’s been well worth every dollar spent. But, she also suggested that we get an audio-tutor to listen to the French language and learn more daily. In particular, she suggested the Pimsleur Language Program, a set of audio CDs that we could get for free from our local library, and listen to in our cars, while walking the dog, etc.

If you are interested in learning a new language, but you want to hire a tutor, I’m telling you–this is the way to do it. These Pimsleur programs are around 30 minutes each, and they teaching you starting at the very basic level, provide you oral practice each lesson, and build up slowly, lesson by lesson.

I got the French CDs from the library, starting with French 1A, and I’ve already learned so much! I’m only on lesson 8 right now, but I can have a basic French conversation (albeit, a conversation about how you are, where you want to eat, when you want to eat, what you want to eat, etc.) and it’s quite exciting.

So, my suggestion–if you want to learn a new language, check out these Pimsleur CDs from your library. You can even rip them onto your computer and upload them to your iPod/iPhone.

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