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Dawn Leggott BA, MEd, DipTEFLA, APD, FHEA

Dawn Leggott Consulting Ltd

Email: dawn@dawnleggott.co.uk
Skype: dawn.leggott

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Dawn Leggott Consulting Ltd is a company registered in England and Wales with company number of 9905027.

Registered Office: 19 Plantation Avenue, Leeds LS17 8TB.   Director: Dawn Leggott.  

 

 © 2019 Dawn Leggott Consulting Ltd

October 11, 2018

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How to use city breaks abroad to learn another language

15 Dec 2015

 

City breaks abroad give you a reason to learn a language. A little language can go a long way for you professionally and personally  – a few small phrases in another language can build relationships, confidence and even careers.

 

This blog gives a few tips to help you to make the most of your city break abroad.

 

BEFORE YOU GO:

 

If you’re a beginner:

  • Learn the basics – introductions, ordering food……. The BBC languages website is great for this.

  • Get a phrase book or a bilingual dictionary.

  • Take group or one-to-one language classes.

  • Learn some useful set phrases e.g. ‘can you speak more slowly please’, ‘please could you repeat that’, ‘I’m sorry, I don’t understand’, ‘I only speak a little X’.

     

     

If you have some knowledge:

  • Set a newspaper from your destination country as your home page. It may give you ideas for a conversation with a local while on holiday.

  • Watch Euronews TV live in French, Spanish, Portuguese, German, or search for “Euronews live in X language” for other languages. Compare the story with the English version.

  • Anticipate situations and plan conversations e.g. hotel reception or restaurants.

  • Get a bilingual dictionary, a grammar book and a grammar practice exercises book.

  • Take group or one-to-one language classes, or do a language exchange with a native speaker.

  • Listen to music in the language – get the lyrics from the CD cover or YouTube, learn song words and practise singing them (excellent for your pronunciation!). For example, I always listen to Flossie Malavialle’s French CDs before going to France.

 

                                              

A little language goes a long way – both on holiday and in the workplace

 

DURING YOUR TRIP:

  • Speak the language. Everyone in that country can be your teacher!

  • Take a notebook with you to write down language you need.

  • Don’t be afraid to make mistakes and keep a good sense of humour. Laugh when you are misunderstood.

  • Noticing – notice not just what people say, but how they say it.

  • Don’t expect to understand every word - aim to get the gist of a conversation, not every word.

  • Step out of your comfort zone – do things you wouldn’t normally do, e.g. try out a local custom.

  • Be open to the different culture - see the positives, seek to understand the values behind the behaviours. Be curious not judgemental.

  • Prepare for your next trip - bring a magazine or music CD home, so you can keep in contact with the language when you get home or as preparation for next trip.

 

 

                            

 

WHEN YOU COME HOME:

  • Show understanding and empathy when you meet non-native speakers of your language at home.

  • If you have the time and continued motivation to learn the language, keep it up.

  • If you do not have the time, get back to life until you book your next city break!

 

“Travel is more than the seeing of sights; it is a change that goes on, deep and permanent, in the ideas of living.” (Miriam Beard).

 

What changes have you experienced by using another language during your city break?

 

I appreciate you taking the time to read my blog and I welcome your feedback.

 

Dawn Leggott

dawn@dawnleggott.co.uk

www.dawnleggott.co.uk

You can also connect with me on LinkedIn

language learning, tips,

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