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4 Habits of Successful Romanian Learners

Successful Romanian Learners

My first shot at language learning didn’t go so well. It was a high school foreign language course which I passed, but just barely. After high school I decided to take up language learning on my own, and at first the results were mixed.

Those early days were filled with discouragement, procrastination, and an inability to crack some of the toughest aspects of foreign grammar. But after a lot of trial and error I found my footing and became a successful language learner for the first time in my life.

In this article I share some of my hard learned lessons and give you 4 practical ways to be a successful Romanian learner. This tips will help you whether you’re learning Romanian, or another foreign language.

Enjoy!

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1) Milk your time for all it’s worth

Perhaps the most vital asset you have at your disposal while learning Romanian is time. While it’s absolutely true that spending money isn’t required when learning a language, spending time definitely is. The learner who makes the most of their available hours and minutes throughout the week will yield the best return for their efforts.

If you’re like the rest of us, it’s probably difficult regularly to dedicate large amounts of time solely to learning Romanian. Studying for an hour a day or even thirty minutes can seem like wishful thinking. However even studying for an hour on a daily basis might be more possible than you think.

Start thinking of your daily hour of learning as something that can be spread throughout your day. Most likely there are small gaps of time sprinkled through your busy schedule that you can use to learn Romanian. It might be the ten minutes you spend waiting for the metro, the thirty minutes you have on your lunch break, or even the five minutes you spend in line at a store or restaurant.

A simple Romanian podcast, flashcard app, or even an online tutor, will make a huge impact on your language ability if you use them consistently (even if it’s just five or ten minutes at a time).

Studying

2) Focus on one learning method

Romanian definitely isn’t the most popular foreign language for native English speakers. Even so, there are still a considerable amount of options when it comes to courses and learning materials. Having an array of options is great, but as a new learner be careful not to fall into the shiny course trap.

Every course and site out there will tell you it’s the best or fastest way to learn Romanian. While each course has its merits, remember that one of the most important factors in language learning isn’t the specific course or method you choose. Rather it’s the discipline and consistency with which you use your chosen course or method.

You’re going to hit hurdles while studying Romanian. But don’t think that just because you’re struggling with verb inflection or grammatical cases, that another Romanian course will solve all of your problems. Stick with your chosen course or method for at least a few months before switching to another. Otherwise you run the risk of hopping from course to course, which can be very detrimental to your progress.

3) Use your knowledge of other languages

If you’re a native English speaker then you have a slight edge when learning Romanian. Romanian comes from the Romance language family (which also includes French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian). While this language is a different one from the West Germanic family that English belongs to, English still shares some commonalities with the romance languages.

A big reason for this because both English and the romance languages were influenced by Latin. As a result you’ll find words in both English and Romanian that sound and or look similar. Also, because English has become such an international language you will find that a lot of modern Romanian words (like “internet” for example) are taken directly from English.

Remember too that If you have any sort of background in the other romance languages, you will have even more of an edge while learning Romanian.

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4) Study Romanian step by step

When you first start learning a foreign language, odds are that you’re very excited. You’ve chosen which learning materials you’ll use, and you see no reason why you can’t practice the language two or three hours a day! At first it really does seem you can learn the language in no time at all. The world of language learning looks like nothing but a big bright opportunity.

That enthusiasm will last you a few days until it wears off. Then you’ll hit your first roadblock in Romanian grammar, pronunciation, or some other aspect of the language, and you’ll be tempted with discouragement. If you’re like me that discouragement could lead you to procrastinate. You’ll put off your hour of study until tomorrow, then the next day, and so on. Before you know it you haven’t practiced Romanian for several weeks!

Discouragement is one of the toughest obstacles when learning a foreign language, and few people even talk about it. Thankfully though, getting past discouragement while learning Romanian isn’t as hard as you might think. Most people new to a foreign language make the mistake of trying to devour an entire language right away. They’re excited, which is great, but they tend to underestimate how much work it will take to gain any level of proficiency in their target language.

Learning Romanian is a marathon, not a sprint. Rather than trying to learn all of the grammar, vocabulary, etc at one time, break things down into more digestible chunks. When you come across a new or difficult aspect of the language, focus only on that aspect for awhile. It could a day or even a week, but don’t move on until you’re comfortable with it.

This process of learning step by step, might feel slow, but in the long run it is much more efficient. You want to look at each new grammar rule or vocabulary words as a brick in your language learning foundation. If you patiently work your way through Romanian brick by brick, you’ll be able to excel much faster once you reach a higher proficiency level.

Conclusion

Anyone who tells you that learning Romanian is easy is lying. Learning any foreign language is difficult, and it will take some time. However becoming fluent in Romanian is a far cry away from being impossible. With some practice and a good dose of determination you will be successful. The language that once seemed so strange and difficult will start to feel natural and enjoyable. Keep your head up. A little perseverance will go a long way!