When I moved back home I decided to take up a new hobby in learning a language. Why? Initially there were multiple reasons. I’ve always wanted to be at least partly fluent in another language, I wanted to take up an academic hobby as I was thinking of doing a Masters in a few years, and I wanted a challenge.
I picked French for multiple reasons. I studied French at GCSE level in school, so I already had a start with the language. Because of this, French seemed easier for me and is the language I default back to when I panic. Lastly, when I committed to learning a language I was going to Belgium, where French is spoken, and although I started with Dutch, I massively struggled with it. Going back to French, the language I had started with learning made the most sense to me. And if I was feeling adventurous, I could always learn another language in the future!
I’ve been learning French on and off since January now, and I haven’t been the best at sticking with it. I think the main problem I’ve had is that I haven’t been doing as much per day as I could be doing, and as a result it feels like I’m not progressing as fast as I possibly could. The app I use say I’m nearly 30% fluent but I don’t believe that! However, I’m really liking using an app to learn as well as books and writing sentences out, mainly because I get instantaneous feedback and speaking exercises. I’ve found that I’m becoming more confident with speaking and listening, rather than just reading and writing which I was good at during my GCSE, and my confidence in speaking French is really improving.
I would definitely recommend learning a language to anyone. It is hard work, but it’s fun, and it might give you peace of mind while travelling. I’m still determined to become fluent in French and who knows, maybe start learning another language in the future!