Learning Languages

The main aim of this page is to help you learn Welsh. As I find and try out different methods of learning, I will review them and give my thoughts and advice here. If my experiences can help others in any way, I’m happy to share them. Comments from others are also very welcome!

But as I’m passionate about language learning in general and an aspiring polyglot, I will also be reviewing various different methods of learning other languages. I can’t wait to get started!

Cymraeg / Welsh

Without doubt, one of the most effective methods I’ve come across for learning to speak Welsh is Say Something in Welsh. The idea behind this course is to get you understanding spoken Welsh and speaking yourself in a very short time. Grammar is not explicitly taught but rather picked up naturally as you work through the lessons. There is a choice of north Walian or south Walian and the language taught is that used in the community by first language speakers. At the end of Level 1 (which is totally free!), learners become eligible to attend a ‘bootcamp’, a week of immersion in Welsh in either Tresaith or north Wales! Whether you’re attending a regular class and want to increase your confidence at speaking, or you want to have a go yourself, you can’t go far wrong with this course.

Bilingual Cymraeg/English reading

If you’re diving into reading Welsh, then you’ll be delighted to know that there is a website that displays bilingual texts. Read in Welsh, then glance at the English when you come to a word or phrase you’re not sure of. There’s quite a range of different articles, so something for everyone, and it’s regularly updated. The site is called parallel.cymru – worth a look!

General Language Learning

One of the big stars of the language learning world is Benny, the Irish Polyglot. He failed miserably at learning languages in school, but took it up with a passion as an adult and has a wealth of tips to share with others keen to have similar success. Benny’s most comprehensive package is his Fluent in 3 Months Premium, which contains a collection of his individual language books as well as solid general advice. He also has some quick tips in Speak in a Week if you just want to dabble a bit first.

Duolingo

This is a free language-learning website that is very popular. The courses are developed primarily by volunteers, passionate about offering their language to the world. Duolingo has lessons in almost every language you could want to learn … well, OK, that’s an exaggeration, but all the most popular ones are there and many more are under development. Apart from possibly Esperanto, I wouldn’t say that you can learn a new language with Duolingo, but it gives you a start, and is great for revising languages that you need to refresh.

Say Something in Spanish

This is another listening and speaking only course from the people who brought you SaySomethinginWelsh. They are expanding into other languages, including minority ones such as Manx and Cornish, but so far their most developed course apart from Welsh is Spanish. Give it a try and you’ll be speaking natural, conversational Spanish before you know it! Go to SaySomethinginSpanish to prepare for that holiday in Spain and surprise the locals with your flu

Finding Other Language Learners

If you’re learning a language and wondering where you can find people to practise with, Amikumu is the app you want. It works on Android and iOS and has a database that contains all the languages in the world – yes, that’s right – over 7,500 of them, including sign languages! All you need to do is download the app, register and indicate the languages you speak and are learning. The app uses your location to scan for the 100 Amikumu users nearest to you that also have that language in their profile. Send them a message, get to know them a little through the app, then arrange to meet for a conversation. And if you’re travelling – find speakers of the language you’re learning in every town you go to!

 

 

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