Language in Bloom

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If you don’t use it, you lose it

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It’s more accurate to say that speaking another language is like getting in really good shape. You can go to the gym every day for six months and follow a healthy eating plan and specific exercise regimen, and be happy with how you feel and look and how strong you are. But, if you completely stop going to the gym after that end goal of “getting into shape”, then in just a little while you’ll have lost all the progress you made.

Don’t let this happen to you with the language(s) you are studying! Remember that speaking any language requires consistent practice, even after you’ve reached the goals you set for yourself.

After studying Spanish for 20 years and living in Spain for 5 years, I consider myself completely fluent. But that doesn’t mean I can isolate myself from the language and expect to maintain my level of fluency. Now that I’m back in the US, it’s a little more challenging to surround myself with Spanish every day, but I make it happen. Here are some of the ways I make sure to keep up my language skills now that I’m in the Northern Shenandoah Valley and not in Valencia:

I know that I need to practice my long-form writing more, and will definitely be doing that in future projects (more to come on that!). What other ways do you practice your language skills to make sure you don’t lose them?

Written by

Tammy Bjelland
Language lover, teacher & coach.

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