With an estimated 6000+ languages spoken worldwide, how do you choose the right one for you to learn?
Many of us take language classes at school, based on the options that are offered – this is mostly a choice between Spanish, French and German, although more options are becoming available. And many of us forget most of the language they have learned once they no longer are required to take classes.
So the first thing to consider is – what language(s) are you interested in?
You may choose Spanish because you enjoy Mexican telenovelas, or French because you’ve always dreamed of living in Paris – the most important thing is to have an interest in the language. If you don’t, then you will quickly lose motivation and have difficulty getting past the basics.
Consider also what language will be of use to you, both now and in the future. If you’re going on a long backpacking trip to South America, Spanish is a must. For a two week holiday in France, speaking some of the language is useful, but will perhaps not benefit you greatly in the long-term if you don’t plan to visit again. A long-term goal to emigrate to France, however, means that knowing the language is vital!
Linked to this is the availability of resources to learn your chosen language. Classes are a great way to kick-start your learning, so check if they’re available in your area. If you want to learn a more obscure language like Icelandic, then check to see what resources are available to you and if they’re going to be enough to get you started and continue your learning. Also see if there are native speakers in your area – talking to a real person is a great way to learn.
Whichever language you choose, enjoy it! With a new language comes opportunity to communicate and connect with more people.