First of all, do you know what type of learner you are? There are three different basic types of learners. They are auditory, visual, and kinesthetic. Auditory learners retain information best when they hear it. Visual learners learn best when they read or see information. Kinesthetic learners learn best through movements.
Many people are a combination of these different learning styles, but most people tend to be somewhat stronger in one type rather than in others.
Think about the best ways you’ve learned things in the past. Do you remember stories that have been told to you? Or do you never forget a face that you’ve seen? Do you learn best while you are physically moving about? Take some time to reflect on this.
For example, I remember once when I was trying to learn all the helping verbs for grade school. I taped the list onto the handlebars of my bike and rode around while reciting them. I still have not forgotten them and can rattle them off at any time. This was 15 years ago or more. Because of this I tend to think that I’m a bit stronger in kinesthetic learning than I am in other types. I learn best when I’m actually doing something in a hands on type approach.
My second best method of learning is through reading – I tend to remember well what I have read better than I remember a lecture. I find that I’m almost equal in both methods but I think reading edges out listening just a little bit. I can remember a lot of information from books I’ve read from the past but I have a bit of a harder time remembering information from lectures.
So, if you’re stronger in a certain area of learning then you should try to structure your language learning sessions around that type of learning. If you’re an auditory learner, try to find a language course that relies more on audio lessons and speaking. If you’re a visual learner ensure that you have textual references with whatever course you are using. In general a course that combines both approaches is key. I am not a fan of those courses that are strictly learn by listening as I think you will have a hard time with this and your progress will be skewed (and you will have a very hard time reading the language).
What type of language learner are you, and how have you implemented this into your techniques with the language you’re studying? Comment below!