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400 Word Guide, Minority Languages, Resources

Learn Bahasa Indonesia In 400 Words

What if I told you 400 words is all it takes to survive in a language?

To express yourself in a foreign language is never easy, but by learning the most basic verbs, descriptive adjectives and nouns you can cover most daily interactions and have a head start when trying to learn this language.

At The Foreign Language Collective we have created a list of the 400 most basic words and have asked people in our community to translate them to their native language.

Together we have created multiple guides to help you communicate yourself in any language.

The main focus of this guide is communication. Grammatical perfection is something that takes time, but communicating is the basis of any language.

The idea is that these words can serve as your basic skill set from where you can build understandable and descriptive sentences to allow you to communicate yourself.

The guide is built from basic verbs and sentences, as well as nouns and adjectives that can help you describe things or people.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor why use many words when a few will do

That is why we have included lots of words like “big” or “small”, “dark” and “light”, but also words like “more” and “less”.

From here you can describe things as “More big”, which may not be grammatically correct but it will in most cases be understood.

You can also combine words like “Yesterday” and “Tomorrow” with your basic verbs, so you can say things like “I go tomorrow”, which in some languages is grammatically correct, in others it is not, but it will always be understood.

We are aware you can not become fluent with 400 words, but the idea is to give you a good base for you can communicate and understand the most basic things. From there on you can get the conversation going, ask questions and learn more.

Learning many words or grammatical often doesn’t make sense until you actually need it, so when the time is right you can move on and research the things you think are missing in your communication.

Whether you just want to cover the basics or continue learning this language until fluency, these 400 words are a great start for you.

Want to know more about our Language Survival Guide and the languages we offer them in? Make sure to check out our page and follow us on Facebook to make sure you don’t miss any updates.

Which language should we do next?
  • Add your answer

Movies, Translation

Here Is What The Opening Sequence To The Lion King Actually Means

The Lion King intro. Hands down the most epic and memorable movie intro in film history.

Who doesn’t have some mental picture of that sun coming up while some incredibly powerful voice sings/shouts something? And while we can never really put our finger on, we know it sounds amazing.

If you need a reminder, or would just like to watch it again for the 400th time (like me), here is a reminder.

So, over the years, the lyrics of the intro have been open to interpretation by many.

 

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor lion king opening song interpretation

Even the Lion King’s own Timon has his own version of the legendary intro.

But, as it turns out, they are actually saying something in those first lines. That’s right.

The intro is in Zulu, and here is what it says.

“Nants ingonyama bagithi Baba Sithi uhm ingonyama

Nants ingonyama bagithi baba Sithi uhhmm ingonyama Ingonyama Siyo Nqoba Ingonyama Ingonyama nengw’ enamabala”

No, it is not just gibberish. In fact, it’s a quite literal description of what is happening.

“Here comes a lion, father Oh yes it’s a lion

Here comes a lion, father Oh yes it’s a lion A lion We’re going to conquer A lion A lion and a leopard come to this open place”

If you are both surprised and disappointed by this, you are not alone

Next time you watch the movie you could pull up this post and sing along with the actual words, and maybe it all finally falls into place.

Either way – this post can fall into the category of “the more you know

Resources

Learn Italian in 400 Words

What if I told you 400 words is all it takes to survive in a language?

To express yourself in a foreign language is never easy, but by learning the most basic verbs, descriptive adjectives and nouns you can cover most daily interactions and have a head start when trying to learn this language.

At The Foreign Language Collective we have created a list of the 400 most basic words and have asked people in our community to translate them to their native language.

Together we have created multiple guides to help you communicate yourself in any language.

The main focus of this guide is communication. Grammatical perfection is something that takes time, but communicating is the basis of any language.

The idea is that these words can serve as your basic skill set from where you can build understandable and descriptive sentences to allow you to communicate yourself.

The guide is built from basic verbs and sentences, as well as nouns and adjectives that can help you describe things or people.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor why use many words when a few will do

That is why we have included lots of words like “big” or “small”, “dark” and “light”, but also words like “more” and “less”.

From here you can describe things as “More big”, which may not be grammatically correct but it will in most cases be understood.

You can also combine words like “Yesterday” and “Tomorrow” with your basic verbs, so you can say things like “I go tomorrow”, which in some languages is grammatically correct, in others it is not, but it will always be understood.

We are aware you can not become fluent with 400 words, but the idea is to give you a good base for you can communicate and understand the most basic things. From there on you can get the conversation going, ask questions and learn more.

Learning many words or grammatical often doesn’t make sense until you actually need it, so when the time is right you can move on and research the things you think are missing in your communication.

Whether you just want to cover the basics or continue learning this language until fluency, these 400 words are a great start for you.

Want to know more about our Language Survival Guide and the languages we offer them in? Make sure to check out our page and follow us on Facebook to make sure you don’t miss any updates.

Which language should we do next?
  • Add your answer

Finding a Job, Resources

Make $30 An Hour Teaching Languages Online With These 6 Sites

Are you looking for a flexible online job that allows you to travel the world? Or are you just happy to make some money with a side hustle?

Teaching English online is a great way to do either of these things. Teaching online allows you to set your own hours (so you can sleep in as long as you’d like) and make money wherever there is a decent internet connection.

Teaching languages online seems like the perfect job for many language enthusiasts, so I wanted to write an article that would tell you a little bit more about this unique opportunity.

There are many reasons why teaching online can be the ideal job for you, whether it is because you want to make some extra bucks or you are looking for a way to finance your international lifestyle.

Here is why teaching online is awesome

You can teach anywhere

Maybe you have your mind set on an idyllic beach on the other side of the planet, or maybe you like to be able to go work without having to put on pants. Either way, teaching languages online allows you to bring in the money from literally any place with an internet connection.

Simply make sure you have a decent webcam and decent audio quality  and a good wifi connection, and the world is your oyster.

Oh, this also means there is absolutely no commute time. You work the hours you work, and the rest you can spend doing whatever you feel like.

You are able to set your own hours

Most websites work with a schedule where you can simply fill in your available hours, and students can book with you within those possibilities. This means you can adjust your working schedule to your own preferred hours.

Not much of a morning person? Sleep in and start working somewhere in the afternoon.

Prefer to have Monday off? Sure, why not?

You decide what teaching hours work best for you.

Simply put, you can work anyplace, anywhere, anytime.

You can set your own rates

This won’t be the case right from the start. Like any job, you have to settle in before you can demand the big bucks. But most sites allow you to set your own rates, so as you get more proficient in your teaching and more students leave positive reviews confirming what a great teacher you are, you can adjust your rates accordingly.

You can set your rates higher, maybe earning a little less overall but also making less hours, or work more hours while charging a little less and earning more on a monthly basis.

It’s up to you.

Cool, you’ve convinced me. Where do I apply?

There are multiple websites where you can apply, depending on what language you are intending on teaching. Each website has it’s own demands, language offering, etc, so I will list as many as possible and I would simply pick out the one that is best for you.

I will try to make the information as clear as possible, but if something is not clear there might be more information than what I could find, so either keep on googling or reach out to the company in question if you have any more specific questions.

Requirements for any websites may include a high school or university degree, previous teaching experience, a TEFL certificate, or maybe an online interview.

More importantly, I have mostly included the ones that offer a wider variety of languages. When you have a specific language in mind you could always look online to see if there are any specific websites for you out there.

Without any further ado, here are your best options.

1. Verbling

Languages: 10+ 
Hourly rate: $ 7 – 30

“Verbling’s mission is to empower people all over the world to become fluent in a foreign language. While our core team is based in San Francisco, the teachers and students who make our mission possible are spread across six continents.

Verbling is an online platform where language learners can take lessons with professional teachers. Our in-house staff vets every application from prospective teachers. Only those teachers who meet rigorous standards are accepted, ensuring high instruction quality for our learners. As a result, the average learner rating for a Verbling teacher is 4.9 out of 5.

Our lessons take place over video chat, so people can learn wherever they may find themselves. Adding to convenience, our language teachers are available 24/7, covering all timezones globally. Ninety-five percent of our members rate their likelihood of recommending Verbling to a friend between 7 and 10 out of 10.”

2. iTalki

Languages: 10+
Hourly rate: $10 – $30

“We believe that the key thing that is missing from language education is people. We built iTalki to make human connections between language learners and language teachers. On our platform, you can find a teacher from the US to tutor you in English, or a person in China to practice Chinese with you.

We believe that everyone can become fluent in any foreign language with a teacher.

iTalki now has a global community of over a million language learners and more than a thousand language teachers, studying over a hundred languages. Hundreds of thousands of paid language lessons have taken place on iTalki, and every day, more and more students and teachers are discovering how quickly they can learn with personal online lessons.”

3. Vipkid

Language: English
Hourly rate: $14 -$22
“VIPKID provides an international learning experience to children in China between the ages 4-12. Headquartered in Beijing, the company offers fully immersive one-on-one English language instruction provided online by highly qualified teachers. The curriculum is based on the U.S. Common Core State Standards and uses a flipped-classroom approach to foster creativity and critical thinking skills.”
As mentioned above, this website is mainly for teaching children, so that is something you have to be prepared for. However, most of these kids already have a fair base in the English language, and your goal would be to help them grow even further. Classes are either by the hour or by 30 minutes.

3. Verbalplanet

Languages: 10+
Hourly rate: $10 – $30

“Founded in 2006, Verbalplanet.com is an award winning language training and tuition service which facilitates online language classes between language learners and native speaking language tutors around the globe using the Skype internet telephony service.New technologies continue to make enormous changes to the way people learn modern languages. Whilst we are a ‘high tech’ service, we are proud to be championing an innovative approach to learning a foreign language with a very ‘human’ side, and one which focuses on what we believe learning a foreign language is all about”

4. Cambly

Languages: Not sure, but it appears they do more than just English
Hourly rate: $10
Now, this isn’t actually a teaching but more of a tutoring website. Unlike most others, you get paid by the minute, not by the hour. They don’t require any experience, so it is a great place to get started if you have none.

5. Lingoda

Languages: English, German, French, Spanish
Hourly rate: Unsure, but the website looks quite legit, and reviews from employees seem positive
Lingoda is a very tight looking website that offers group sessions for people learning one of the above mentioned languages.

“Languages bring people together and build bridges between cultures. Learning a language is like learning to see the world through different eyes.

Our goal is to make learning easier and more accessible. Not everyone has the possibility to attend traditional language schools and in addition there are many inconveniences and discomfort involved, such as: time spent travelling back and forth to school, being forced to learn at fixed times, progress is either too slow or too fast, the learning content is completely generic and classes can be very expensive, especially to learn with a native speaking teacher.

Our main motivation is thus helping people achieve their goals and to provide our students with the high-quality learning experience – all that with the advantages of flexible online teaching.”

6. QKids

Language: English
Hourly rate: $16 –  $20
QKids is a Taiwan based company aiming to connect native English speakers to Taiwanese kids. They unfortunately have some requirements which don’t make this a suitable option for everyone, but if you do meet these this might be a great opportunity.
These are their requirements:
  • Native fluency English speakers who are based in United States or Canada
  • Earned a degree or currently enrolled in a university program
  • Although not required, those with any prior teaching/early childhood experience preferred
  • Digital literacy, outgoing personality, and consistent passion in class
  • Available to teach a minimum of 6 hours (12 classes) per week

Want to know more about what you can do to land a job, or how to get TEFL certified for cheap.

Click here for the full article on making money as an online teacher, or here for the article on how to get a TEFL certificate for under $40

Finding a Job, Resources

How To Make Money Teaching Languages Online

Are you looking for a flexible online job that allows you to travel the world? Or are you just happy to make some money with a side hustle?

Teaching English online is a great way to do either of these things. Teaching online allows you to set your own hours (so you can sleep in as long as you’d like) and make money wherever there is a decent internet connection.

Teaching languages online seems like the perfect job for many language enthusiasts, so I wanted to write an article that would tell you a little bit more about this unique opportunity.

There are many reasons why teaching online can be the ideal job for you, whether it is because you want to make some extra bucks or you are looking for a way to finance your international lifestyle.

Here is why teaching online is awesome

You can teach anywhere

Maybe you have your mind set on an idyllic beach on the other side of the planet, or maybe you like to be able to go work without having to put on pants. Either way, teaching languages online allows you to bring in the money from literally any place with an internet connection.

Simply make sure you have a decent webcam and decent audio quality  and a good wifi connection, and the world is your oyster.

Oh, this also means there is absolutely no commute time. You work the hours you work, and the rest you can spend doing whatever you feel like.

You are able to set your own hours

Most websites work with a schedule where you can simply fill in your available hours, and students can book with you within those possibilities. This means you can adjust your working schedule to your own preferred hours.

Not much of a morning person? Sleep in and start working somewhere in the afternoon.

Prefer to have Monday off? Sure, why not?

You decide what teaching hours work best for you.

Simply put, you can work anyplace, anywhere, anytime.

You can set your own rates

This won’t be the case right from the start. Like any job, you have to settle in before you can demand the big bucks. But most sites allow you to set your own rates, so as you get more proficient in your teaching and more students leave positive reviews confirming what a great teacher you are, you can adjust your rates accordingly.

You can set your rates higher, maybe earning a little less overall but also making less hours, or work more hours while charging a little less and earning more on a monthly basis.

It’s up to you.

Cool, you’ve convinced me. Where do I apply?

There are multiple websites where you can apply, depending on what language you are intending on teaching. Each website has it’s own demands, language offering, etc, so I will list as many as possible and I would simply pick out the one that is best for you.

I will try to make the information as clear as possible, but if something is not clear there might be more information than what I could find, so either keep on googling or reach out to the company in question if you have any more specific questions.

Requirements for any websites may include a high school or university degree, previous teaching experience, a TEFL certificate, or maybe an online interview.

More importantly, I have mostly included the ones that offer a wider variety of languages. When you have a specific language in mind you could always look online to see if there are any specific websites for you out there.

Without any further ado, here are your best options.

1. Verbling

Languages: 10+ 
Hourly rate: $ 10 – $30

“Verbling’s mission is to empower people all over the world to become fluent in a foreign language. While our core team is based in San Francisco, the teachers and students who make our mission possible are spread across six continents.

Verbling is an online platform where language learners can take lessons with professional teachers. Our in-house staff vets every application from prospective teachers. Only those teachers who meet rigorous standards are accepted, ensuring high instruction quality for our learners. As a result, the average learner rating for a Verbling teacher is 4.9 out of 5.

Our lessons take place over video chat, so people can learn wherever they may find themselves. Adding to convenience, our language teachers are available 24/7, covering all timezones globally. Ninety-five percent of our members rate their likelihood of recommending Verbling to a friend between 7 and 10 out of 10.”

2. iTalki

Languages: 10+
Hourly rate: $10 – $30

“We believe that the key thing that is missing from language education is people. We built iTalki to make human connections between language learners and language teachers. On our platform, you can find a teacher from the US to tutor you in English, or a person in China to practice Chinese with you.

We believe that everyone can become fluent in any foreign language with a teacher.

iTalki now has a global community of over a million language learners and more than a thousand language teachers, studying over a hundred languages. Hundreds of thousands of paid language lessons have taken place on iTalki, and every day, more and more students and teachers are discovering how quickly they can learn with personal online lessons.”

3. Vipkid

Language: English
Hourly rate: $14 -$22
“VIPKID provides an international learning experience to children in China between the ages 4-12. Headquartered in Beijing, the company offers fully immersive one-on-one English language instruction provided online by highly qualified teachers. The curriculum is based on the U.S. Common Core State Standards and uses a flipped-classroom approach to foster creativity and critical thinking skills.”
As mentioned above, this website is mainly for teaching children, so that is something you have to be prepared for. However, most of these kids already have a fair base in the English language, and your goal would be to help them grow even further. Classes are either by the hour or by 30 minutes.

3. Verbalplanet

Languages: 10+
Hourly rate: $10 – $30

“Founded in 2006, Verbalplanet.com is an award winning language training and tuition service which facilitates online language classes between language learners and native speaking language tutors around the globe using the Skype internet telephony service.New technologies continue to make enormous changes to the way people learn modern languages. Whilst we are a ‘high tech’ service, we are proud to be championing an innovative approach to learning a foreign language with a very ‘human’ side, and one which focuses on what we believe learning a foreign language is all about”

4. Cambly

Languages: Not sure, but it appears they do more than just English
Hourly rate: $10
Now, this isn’t actually a teaching but more of a tutoring website. Unlike most others, you get paid by the minute, not by the hour. They don’t require any experience, so it is a great place to get started if you have none.

5. Lingoda

Languages: English, German, French, Spanish
Hourly rate: Unsure, but the website looks quite legit, and reviews from employees seem positive
Lingoda is a very tight looking website that offers group sessions for people learning one of the above mentioned languages.

“Languages bring people together and build bridges between cultures. Learning a language is like learning to see the world through different eyes.

Our goal is to make learning easier and more accessible. Not everyone has the possibility to attend traditional language schools and in addition there are many inconveniences and discomfort involved, such as: time spent travelling back and forth to school, being forced to learn at fixed times, progress is either too slow or too fast, the learning content is completely generic and classes can be very expensive, especially to learn with a native speaking teacher.

Our main motivation is thus helping people achieve their goals and to provide our students with the high-quality learning experience – all that with the advantages of flexible online teaching.”

6. QKids

Language: English
Hourly rate: $16 –  $20
QKids is a Taiwan based company aiming to connect native English speakers to Taiwanese kids. They unfortunately have some requirements which don’t make this a suitable option for everyone, but if you do meet these this might be a great opportunity.
These are their requirements:
  • Native fluency English speakers who are based in United States or Canada
  • Earned a degree or currently enrolled in a university program
  • Although not required, those with any prior teaching/early childhood experience preferred
  • Digital literacy, outgoing personality, and consistent passion in class
  • Available to teach a minimum of 6 hours (12 classes) per week

 

But what if I only know one language?

Knowing multiple languages obviously gives you a great advantage because you will be able to understand the process your students are going through. However, being exposed to a teacher that only addresses them in their target language might also benefit your students.

As long as you know what you are doing and you can offer some value to your students, knowing multiple languages is certainly not a must.

 

Some tips on landing a job

Get some experience

You might try tutoring some kids near you to help you get some experience in the field. Try asking some of your nieces and nephews, hang up a local ad, or ask around in a school nearby. You can even offer some classes for free or for a reduced rate just to get some recommendations and experience that will help you rand an online job.

Know your strengths

Before becoming a teacher you have to make sure you can actually offer something to your students. Most websites will ask you to make a profile. Before doing that think to yourself – what am I good at?

Are you good at explaining grammar? Or are you better at correcting their pronunciation?

Different students may have different needs, so telling them what you are good at may help convince them you are the teacher they want.

Make an appealing video

Most websites allow you to make a profile, so make sure it’s actually appealing. When making a video, make sure you seem kind but also state your experience and dedication to the students.

As mentioned in the previous point, make sure you know your strengths (and focus on those)

Get certified

Getting certified, depending on the website you’d like to teach at, is not a must. However, it will definitely help as it will attest to your skills, both in the area of teaching and the language you are trying to learn.

For English, the TEFL certificate is fairly well-known but can often be pricy. However, there is a way to get certified for less than $40. A certificate can also help you land a job teaching at a school abroad.

Getting certified for cheap

This certificate can easily set you back a couple of hundred dollars, which means your plan to make money requires some investment up front. This may not be a feasible investment for everybody.

Luckily, there is a way to get your certificate and start teaching online without having to make a major investment before.

On American Groupon you can find tons of TEFL courses that include a certificate, plus help in finding a job that are only $39. In hours of teaching, you can earn easily earn this back in 2 – 4 hours, depending on what and where you teach.

For this you do need an account on the American Groupon. This really is only a matter of creating a new account, and the fact that you don’t have an American address doesn’t really matter. Your name and email address are enough to get access.

You can outsmart the payment system by paying with a PayPal account. Your PayPal account can either have money on it already, or you can hook it up to your credit card or bank account. Either way, just using your PayPal login is enough to pay.

Before purchasing any course I would try and look at all the reviews on whether it is legit or not. The courses changes frequently and there are multiple people offering, so it is hard to say something about the quality of all of them as I have obviously not checked every single new posting.

However, the course I attended was excellent and helped me a great deal with landing a new job as an online teacher. Groupon generally offers legit deals, so I wouldn’t be too worried generally, but just to be sure it’s great to see reviews on the exact course you are about to take.

 

Click here to find the current offers of TEFL courses on American Groupon

Do you have any other language learning/teaching sites to add to this list?

 

Resources

How To Get TEFL Certified For Less Than $40

Are you looking for a flexible online job that allows you to travel the world? Or are you just happy to make some money with a side hustle?

Teaching English online is a great way to do either of these things. Teaching online allows you to set your own hours (so you can sleep in as long as you’d like) and make money wherever there is a decent internet connection.

Teaching languages online seems like the perfect job for many language enthusiasts, so I wanted to write an article that would tell you a little bit more about this unique opportunity.

There are many reasons why teaching online can be the ideal job for you, whether it is because you want to make some extra bucks or you are looking for a way to finance your international lifestyle.

Here is why teaching online is awesome

You can teach anywhere

Maybe you have your mind set on an idyllic beach on the other side of the planet, or maybe you like to be able to go work without having to put on pants. Either way, teaching languages online allows you to bring in the money from literally any place with an internet connection.

Simply make sure you have a decent webcam and decent audio quality  and a good wifi connection, and the world is your oyster.

Oh, this also means there is absolutely no commute time. You work the hours you work, and the rest you can spend doing whatever you feel like.

 

You are able to set your own hours

Most websites work with a schedule where you can simply fill in your available hours, and students can book with you within those possibilities. This means you can adjust your working schedule to your own preferred hours.

Not much of a morning person? Sleep in and start working somewhere in the afternoon.

Prefer to have Monday off? Sure, why not?

You decide what teaching hours work best for you.

Simply put, you can work anyplace, anywhere, anytime.

You can set your own rates

This won’t be the case right from the start. Like any job, you have to settle in before you can demand the big bucks. But most sites allow you to set your own rates, so as you get more proficient in your teaching and more students leave positive reviews confirming what a great teacher you are, you can adjust your rates accordingly.

You can set your rates higher, maybe earning a little less overall but also making less hours, or work more hours while charging a little less and earning more on a monthly basis.

It’s up to you.

Teaching English in a school

Maybe you aren’t planning on teaching online, but prefer a steady job in one place. You may have less physical flexibility (and may actually need to put on pants for work), but for a language lover such as yourself (I am just assuming here), this is still a great option job wise.

Internationally there are many opportunities, but even within your country there may be places where people are looking to learn English as a foreign language.

When you are planning to teach in a school, you will most definitely need more credentials than those who teach online. Having a TEFL certificate may be extra extra important for you.

 

Why should I get certified?

A TEFL certificate will add some credibility to you as a teacher. It shows that you not only know how to speak English, but also how to teach it. The TEFL certificate has become such a known standard for foreign language teachers that any place you will apply to will take it as a

It’s not just about the piece of paper – getting certifies means actually taking a course and learning how to teach English as a foreign language. You may be fluent at English, but that doesn’t mean you will be a great teacher.

If you are a native speaker your knowledge will mostly be implicit – meaning that you will most likely speak correctly without actually knowing why. To teach English, you need a deeper understanding of why things are the way they are.

Getting your certificate will help you with this.

Some of the courses help you to find a job afterwards, which is even better. All in all, it’s hard to go wrong with a TEFL certificate.

Getting certified for cheap

This certificate can easily set you back a couple of hundred dollars, which means your plan to make money requires some investment up front. This may not be a feasible investment for everybody.

Luckily, there is a way to get your certificate and start teaching online without having to make a major investment before.

On American Groupon you can find tons of TEFL courses that include a certificate, plus help in finding a job that are only $39. In hours of teaching, you can earn easily earn this back in 2 – 4 hours, depending on what and where you teach.

For this you do need an account on the American Groupon. This really is only a matter of creating a new account, and the fact that you don’t have an American address doesn’t really matter. Your name and email address are enough to get access.

You can outsmart the payment system by paying with a PayPal account. Your PayPal account can either have money on it already, or you can hook it up to your credit card or bank account. Either way, just using your PayPal login is enough to pay.

Before purchasing any course I would try and look at all the reviews on whether it is legit or not. The courses changes frequently and there are multiple people offering, so it is hard to say something about the quality of all of them as I have obviously not checked every single new posting.

However, the course I attended was excellent and helped me a great deal with landing a new job as an online teacher. Groupon generally offers legit deals, so I wouldn’t be too worried generally, but just to be sure it’s great to see reviews on the exact course you are about to take.

 

Click here to find the current offers of TEFL courses on American Groupon

 

And that’s it. I hope this tip has helped you in your goal of becoming  a foreign language teacher, even if you don’t have the budget for an extensive course at the moment.

For the entire article on becoming a foreign language teacher online, click here.

Resources, Series

9 Spanish Shows You Can Watch on Netflix

Learning a language while binging things on Netflix? Sign me up!

Improving your foreign language skills through the arts of movies and tv shows is not only very fun – it is also very effective and useful.

Why learn a language through series?

The themes that are featured in movies are often very telling of the things that are big issues in a country. In Brazil, there are many movies involving favelas and police squads. Now, this doesn’t mean everyone in Brazil lives in a favela, but these movies could not be made in for example Sweden. Romantic comedies tell a lot about the ways people see romance, what people see as the ultimate love story.

A lot of Western movies revolve around Christmas, and that is because Christmas is a very important celebration in Western culture. A TV show could also be about some important historic event which is of great importance in the country in question.

1. Las Chicas del cable

“Set in the 1920s, this is the story of four women from different backgrounds newly hired as operators for a phone company.”

2. Ingobernable

“The First Lady of Mexico has big plans to improve conditions for the country. As she starts to lose faith in her husband, President Diego Nava, she finds herself at a crossroad where she will need to find a way to deal with a great challenge.”

3. Club de Cuervos

“When the patriarch of a prominent family dies, his heirs battle to determine who will gain control of his beloved soccer team: The Cuervos of Nuevo Toledo.”

4. Juana Ines

“This series dramatizes the life of Juana Inés de la Cruz, a renowned writer, nun, and influential political figure in 17th-century Mexico.”

5. El Chapo

“A look at the life of notorious drug kingpin, El Chapo, from his early days in the 1980s working for the Guadalajara Cartel, to his rise to power of during the ’90s and his ultimate downfall in 2016.”

6. Narcos

“A chronicled look at the criminal exploits of Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar, as well as the many other drug kingpins who plagued the country through the years.”

7. El Vato

“El Vato is an American biographical television series based on the life of Mexican singer El Dasa and created by Endemol Shine International and Boomdog Films for NBC Universo. The plot focuses of the story of Mexican singer El Vato and his friends in their attempt to triumph in the treacherous and seductive musical world of Los Angeles, California.”

8. The day I Met El Chapo

“Famed Mexican actress Kate del Castillo introduces a Hollywood star to a fugitive drug lord. What could go wrong? For her: a lot.”

9. La Casa de Papel

“A group of very peculiar robbers have assaulted the Factory of Moneda and Timbre to carry out the most perfect robbery in the history of Spain and taking home 2,400 million euros.”

Want to find out how to watch more content in Spanish?

Check out our movie recommendations or how to watch content in another language

Resources

The 3 Best Apps To Find Yourself A Language Partner

 

Before now, if you want to learn a foreign language, you’ll first be advised to travel to the country that speaks that native language and this could get one discouraged most because of financial constraint; cost of travel. Today, one can learn almost any language that exists from mobile or desktop apps.

You could just signup and pay for an online class and receive lectures and drills at the comfort of your home. While this makes learning easier, it’s still not complete as one needs a native from the country of interest or someone who speaks the language or even a novice like you who is learning the language too so they can help you become comfortable in having a conversation in that language without sounding funny.

Now, there are certain mobile applications that help people locate a language partner that they can speak with and learn more from. Curious to know these apps? Read on…

You can find a language partner with following apps:

1. Hello Talk

This app doesn’t require assistance from third party apps or Skype to help interact with your partners. Hello Talk is a standalone app with which you can do a lot more than just connecting with someone who speaks or is learning the target language.

It helps saves embarrassment during conversations when you can’t fully express yourself in the target language to be understood as the application has Translation, Transliteration, text-to-voice features and voice-to-text features. This way, you can also use the translation feature to interact with your language partner.

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2. Bilingua

This application goes beyond getting you a complimentary native speaker; it makes learning fun, easy and very interactive for people who use it.

Its smart chat feature gives users suggestions on topics they could talk about with their language partners so you don’t run out of topics and get the conversation boring or awkward. It also recommends phrases you could use during a conversation.

Once you start using the app, you’ll be asked personal questions like hobbies, best food, etc. then Bilingua matches you to a partner with a similar profile. This way, you’ll feel more comfortable and maybe bong in a friendship on the long haul.

3. HiNative

It is common for one to be inquisitive when learning a new language. Questions like origin of the culture, language etc. and most times, these questions could only be answered by the natives of the target language. This could be difficult especially if you are not in the target country.

HiNative has a Question & Answer feature that helps one get their questions answered by natives of the target language. It has an easy-to-use interface, where you could ask questions with the ‘Ask’ button.

It also has a voice record feature where you can ask questions and record, then allows natives to answer your questions, also correct you on pronunciation mistakes. You could also help answer other people’s question about your native language and so on.

So, learning a new language shouldn’t be that hard as there exists apps that could help you locate a language partner or a native of the target language around you to help with your learning process.

 

Bonus – The Foreign Language Exchange group

If you are a frequent user of Facebook, you may find your ideal partner in our own Facebook group. It was created with the intention of connecting language learners and giving them a platform to share their tips and ask questions. Now, a year after it’s creation, we are have gained many thousands of members.

 

Are there any other apps you can recommend for language exchange?

 

Inspiration, Linguistics, Resources

8 TED Talks That Will Inspire You To Learn A New Language

Who doesn’t love a good TED Talk? At the very least they tell you something you didn’t know before. At the very best they inspire you to become a smarter, wiser person. If you are a language fanatic (like most of us here at the Foreign Language Collective), you will especially love all of these interesting talks about language.

Did you know the language you speak can actually affect how much you save? Or that there is a hidden musicality within sign language?

Watch one of these TED Talks for some guaranteed language learning inspiration.

1. Four Reasons To Learn A New Languager

“English is fast becoming the world’s universal language, and instant translation technology is improving every year. So why bother learning a foreign language? Linguist and Columbia professor John McWhorter shares four alluring benefits of learning an unfamiliar tongue.”

2. Learn To Read Chinese .. with ease

For foreigners, learning to speak Chinese is a hard task. But learning to read the beautiful, often complex characters of the Chinese written language may be less difficult. ShaoLan walks through a simple lesson in recognizing the ideas behind the characters and their meaning — building from a few simple forms to more complex concepts. Call it Chineasy.

3. My Year of Reading A Book From Every Country In the World

Ann Morgan considered herself well read — until she discovered the “massive blindspot” on her bookshelf. Amid a multitude of English and American authors, there were very few books from beyond the English-speaking world. So she set an ambitious goal: to read one book from every country in the world over the course of a year. Now she’s urging other Anglophiles to read translated works so that publishers will work harder to bring foreign literary gems back to their shores. Explore interactive maps of her reading journey here: go.ted.com/readtheworld

4. The Enchanting Music of Sign Language

Artist and TED Fellow Christine Sun Kim was born deaf, and she was taught to believe that sound wasn’t a part of her life, that it was a hearing person’s thing. Through her art, she discovered similarities between American Sign Language and music, and she realized that sound doesn’t have to be known solely through the ears — it can be felt, seen and experienced as an idea. In this endearing talk, she invites us to open our eyes and ears and participate in the rich treasure of visual language.

5. Don’t Insist on English

Patricia Ryan is a longtime English teacher who asks a provocative question: Is the world’s focus on English preventing the spread of great ideas in other languages? In other words: What if Einstein had to pass the TOEFL? It’s a passionate defense of translating and sharing ideas.

6. Could your language affect your ability to save money?

What can economists learn from linguists? Behavioral economist Keith Chen introduces a fascinating pattern from his research: that languages without a concept for the future — “It rain tomorrow,” instead of “It will rain tomorrow” — correlate strongly with high savings rates.

7. Don’t kill your language

More and more, English is a global language; speaking it is perceived as a sign of being modern. But — what do we lose when we leave behind our mother tongues? Suzanne Talhouk makes an impassioned case to love your own language, and to cherish what it can express that no other language can. In Arabic with subtitles.

8. Should we simplify spelling?

How much energy and brain power do we devote to learning how to spell? Language evolves over time, and with it the way we spell — is it worth it to spend so much time memorizing rules that are filled with endless exceptions? Literary scholar Karina Galperin suggests that it may be time for an update in the way we think about and record language. (In Spanish with English subtitles)