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  • Step by step guides for learning a new language
  • Tips for talking to native speakers and understanding what they say
  • Help with remembering vocabulary and staying motivated

...and a FREE copy of my E-Book on the best


How to Use Vocabulary Lists to Instantly Improve Your Communication Skills

vocabulary lists
If you’re my age or older, your foreign language homework at school probably looked like this:

“Here’s a list of 10 French verbs. Learn them all for a test next Tuesday.”

Many years later, you stumble across blogs like mine, and you’re told something different:

“Learning lists of words is wrong…use xyz fancy method instead!”

Indeed, for a long time, I thought learning lists of words in a foreign language was bad.

But now I’m not so sure.

In fact, I’ve been learning a lot of lists of words recently.

And it’s been working rather well.

Keep reading, and I’ll tell you why you should probably be learning lists of vocabulary too. Continue reading…

16 language learning problems I struggle with every day

what i struggle with

As a language blogger and podcaster, people often assume I have all the answers. But nothing could be further from the truth! I struggle with a whole host of language learning problems on a daily basis that I wish I could get better at. Here are some of them.

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12 Steps to Finding Your Perfect Language Teacher Online

find your perfect language teacher online

Do you wish you had more opportunities to speak in the language you’re leaning? What would it mean for your fluency if you could simply speak more often? Well, whatever language you’re learning and wherever you live, it might surprise you to know that there is a small army of native speakers out there literally […]

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8 study hacks you can use when you’re too busy to learn a language

learn language too busy

Are you too busy to learn a language? Do you always find it hard to make time to study? Me too. In this video I’m going to lift the lid on a typical day, and let you look over my shoulder as I study languages in all kinds of different places over the course of […]

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Why you were wrong about rote learning

rote learning

If I could wave a magic wand and solve one language learning problem for people, do you know what it would be? Memory. Learning and memorising vocabulary in a foreign language makes some people tear their hair out. It drives others to tears. And, naturally, there’s no one solution that works for everyone. So today I’m pleased […]

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How to Write in Japanese – A Beginner’s Guide

how to write in japanese

Do you want to learn how to write in Japanese, but feel confused or intimidated by the script? This post will break it all down for you, in a step-by-step guide to reading and writing this beautiful language. I remember when I first started learning Japanese and how daunting the writing system seemed. I even […]

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Podcast Launch: The I Will Teach You A Language Podcast

i will teach you a language podcast

This week, I’m thrilled to announce the launch of my brand new podcast, all about the art of language learning! Introducing… The I Will Teach You A Language Podcast – Weekly Motivation and Language Learning Tips to Help You Become Fluent in Any Language Click here to subscribe in iTunes Click here to subscribe in […]

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Is your vocabulary notebook out of control?

vocabulary notebook

How many old vocabulary notebooks do you have lying around the house? And how many of the words that you’ve written inside those notebooks have you ever managed to learn? For me the answers are: 1) A lot and 2) Not very many. (Unfortunately, in that order.) So was all that frantic scribbling was worthwhile? Or should I not have […]

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7 year old speaks 5 languages

7 year old speaks 5 languages

Meet my friend Yukine. She’s 7 years old and speaks 5 languages: English, Spanish, Japanese, German and Sign Language. When I visited the Canary Islands recently, we sat down for a chat, and I asked her about her languages and what she likes about each of them. Now, it’s a common myth that children are much […]

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FluentU Review – Language Learning With Video

fluentu review japanese

I’m sure you know this feeling. You study your new language at home, or in class, and it all seems to be going well. But then you go out into the real world, speak to some people… and you understand nothing. It feels like you’ve gone back to square one. It’s frustrating. And demotivating as […]

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How I learn foreign languages

olly jan video cover

[For a complete script, scroll down to the end of the post] Hi, I’m Olly. Nice to meet you! As you can probably tell from the video cover, I’m from the UK. They say that Brits are rubbish at language learning. Perhaps it’s because we live on an island and have no need for any […]

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How to stop people talking to you in English


It really sucks. You’re learning a new language, and it finally comes time to try it out with some native speakers! So, you pluck up the courage, walk over to them, try your best to say something nice. They look at you… They think for a second… …and they reply in English! You want to keep […]

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How to Learn the Spanish of the Canary Islands

spanish canary islands canarian

You might not know where the Canary Islands are. Don’t worry, though… you’re not the only one!  You also might not know that the Canary Islands belong to Spain, and that Spanish is the local language.  It’s actually a topic close to my heart, because I originally learnt my Spanish with Canarians, which is where I […]

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Pimsleur Egyptian Arabic Review – A Good Way to Learn Arabic?

pimsleur egyptian arabic

When I started my project to learn Egyptian Arabic, one obstacle I faced straight away was that I didn’t have any materials! In Qatar, where I was living at the time, there were very few good bookshops. The ones that did exist catered almost exclusively for Modern Standard Arabic resources, which, thanks to this interview, I […]

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One simple strategy for learning the hardest grammar in the world

learn hard grammar

If you’re learning a difficult language, you might be wondering how best to set about learning its grammar. You might have flicked through various textbooks, maybe even done a few of the grammar exercises… and felt so overwhelmed that you wanted to throw the book through the window! Well, fear not! This post will show […]

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