As opposed to common misconceptions, learning a new language does not have to be expensive. In fact, there are plenty of reputable online options for free language resources. Since it can be time-consuming to determine the legitimate sources from the spammy sites, we wanted to share our five favorite resources. These often circulate among homeschooling parents and students alike, especially when saving money is necessary. Thankfully, a tight budget doesn’t have to hold you back from unlocking the door to a new language!
5 Free Foreign Language Tools
We all know and love Rosetta Stone, but it may not be an option for learners who don’t have extra spending cash to spare. It’s not a problem, though, because there are plenty of credible resources on the web for free language learning. Hopefully, this list will help get your foot in the door! Besides, how great is it going to feel when you can understand elements to a language–or even a conversation–and know you didn’t empty your wallet? Thriftiness is always an excellent option; sometimes it just requires a little creativity!
Duolingo is basically the leading free app for learning a new language! It has easy-to-follow lessons, pronunciation guides, and interactive activities. Learners earn points, level up, and more. It makes the language study feel like a game, and what better way to learn than when you’re having fun?
Learn a Language is a website dedicated to offering free language learning tools. With their lessons and activities, students can learn over 1400 words. Further, this website supports an incredible number of languages, whether just for activities, games, help with the most common words, or everything combined.
- An Introduction to Spanish Video Series
“Destinos” is an interactive video series aimed to help students practice their Spanish. Further, it aims to provide new resources for those both learning and teaching Spanish. Follow along with the fictional lawyer, Raquel Rodriguez, as she travels the world to solve a mystery.
Open Culture is similar to LearnALanguage.com in that it’s an open source website for language resources. However, it remains unique due to their selection of more than 48 languages with numerous resources for each selection. Further, plenty of their resources are completely free, if not most.
This app differs from Duolingo in that it’s a great supplementary resource for those learning Spanish, rather than an app for actually teaching students the language. With excellent ratings and reviews, this app is perfect for learning new words, translating difficult terms, and explaining definitions.
Helpful Tips & Tricks for Learning a New Language
Okay, so maybe you have a great app or program for learning a foreign language, but you’re still interested in a few hacks for better comprehension. We have just the tips for you! Some of our suggestions may seem obvious or simple, but with practice, they will add depth to your language study and help round out your skills.
- Talk with a Native Speaker. One of the best methods for learning a language is to converse often with those who speak it as their native tongue. Even if you don’t know anyone who speaks your target language, you can still chat with a native speaker by using a resource such as Hello Talk. This website gives learners the opportunity to converse with someone speaking that particular language. As a homeschool student, it doesn’t hurt to make friends while they are learning!
- Play free foreign language vocabulary games. Students typically learn more through playing games and having fun, so why not harness that opportunity and work on your foreign language skills while playing vocabulary games?
- Watch movies with subtitles. These can either be English movies with foreign subtitles or vice versa!
- Read your favorite book in your target language. It’s highly likely you know the story well already, so reading the book in your target language can help you learn the grammar and written structure of the language. Reading the language is just as important as listening to it!
- Begin creating a foreign language wall. For each new phrase you learn, write it on a sheet of paper or even a sticky note, and pin it to a large, blank wall. As your vocabulary grows, so will the papers on the wall and it will soon begin resembling your very own word bubble in your new language.