Here are two more common mistakes you should avoid in order to get the most out of your language learning experience:
- Your trainer designed a course exclusively focused on grammar while your primary goal should be to learn how to speak.
While a solid grammar foundation shouldn’t be underestimated, make sure that your course is tailor-made for you so that you can start speaking the language from day one. Your course will be useless if your trainer exclusively focuses on grammar, grammar and again… grammar! The primary goal should be how you can communicate in everyday life situations and grammar rules should be at the service of your communication, not vice-versa. You always have to walk out of your class feeling that you learned new expressions and you are completely comfortable in using them in conversation. If you are studying very accessible languages such as Spanish, French, Italian, German or Portuguese, you should be able to handle a basic conversation after no longer than four or five months of training. Otherwise you might consider replacing your trainer.
- Your class includes five or ten students and you suddenly find yourself in a jungle.
Your class shouldn’t be bigger than three or four participants; otherwise it could turn into complete chaos. Your trainer should always be at your disposal and completely focused on your needs during the class. On the other hand, keep in mind that individual lessons will not necessarily maximize your learning experience. Sometimes individual lessons can be extremely boring unless your trainer has an innate sense of humor. Small group lessons can be more fun and engaging. You will realize that you are not the only person that makes gaffes or pronounces words in the wrong way. Your classmates make mistakes also and you can all laugh about it together.