Learn A New Language Faster With Pop Culture

Many of us have "learning a foreign language" on our bucket lists. The more we immerse ourselves in a new language, the better we get at it. One easy and fun way to do that is to tap into the pop culture of native speakers: music, TV shows and common phrases.

Photo by Nick Wiesner

Technology entrepreneur Kumar Thangudu has a list of 10 language learning hacks. He mentions quirky ethnic television shows, such as the foreign version of American Idol (where you might see renditions of songs you know done in the other language), foreign music (Lyrics Training on YouTube could be helpful) and watching TV (or movies with the subtitles on). Learning foreign memes, with their associated images, are also a fun way to remember words.

One new trick I learned from the list was the use of pangrams, which are sentences that use every letter of the alphabet at least once. For example, the foreign language equivalent of "The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dogs." This could be helpful with improving your pronunciation.

Hit up Kumar's blog post for more ideas on learning a new language.

Foreign Language Learning Hacks [H. Kumar Thangudu]


    slightly off topic...I find it fascinating that as a child in Australia I used to get teased for speaking another language yet 35 years later it's a 'bucket list' item

      Well this is an American life hacker post for a start so it'd be an American 'bucket list' item for starters :P

      Although my dad used to cop a lot of shit for being German (after the war and all) growing up, so I'd say it's just a case of Australians generally being ignorant cunts, which we've only gotten slightly better at in those 35 years, no doubt thanks to the Internet shattering our isolation.

    The main point to make about adult language learning is that an eclectic approach is best. Use many, many different approaches/styles at first to find the ones that gel with you the most and then continue to revisit those other styles that you culled from the list initially. We forget that when we were children, we did the very same thing in learning about the world around us.. we need to rediscover those tools for learning.

    Op! Op! Op! Oppa Gangnam Style!

    Seems legit.

    I agree that immersion is NB to learn another language however we have literally millions of people in Australia who have been immersed in English but whose level of proficiency is not even "intermediate". There is more required than immersion ( though of course for some people that seems to be enough). You need to find methods that work. Too many of the ones that are being used only work for the minority.
    The current batch of language teachers were raised on an eclectic approach. That has worked no better than many of the other approaches advocated and used previously. Still the rates of success are abysmal ( especially when compared to the success rates we all had learning our first!).
    As suggested above, we need to find what works for us, but what we need to be mindful of is that there there is more that holds us together as humans than separates us. So there are a LOT of commonalities in successful language learning practices ( the ones that lead to proficiency i.e.)

    I'm trying to learn Italian and I've already learnt a couple words from playing assassins creed 2, and Brotherhood

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