Tag Archives: Language Learning

Why Does it Seem Like My Mandarin Gets Better After a Few Drinks?

Based on anecdotal evidence from popular media, it’s widely believed that alcohol improves the ability to speak in a foreign language, ostensibly due to the anxiety-reducing effects of booze itself. Based on personal experience, a couple of drinks goes a long way toward loosening my tongue no matter what language I’m speaking. I’m currently on(…)


15 Forgotten Christmas Words to Make Your Holiday Merry

Are we too late? Or perhaps right on time. Possibly… but it’s that time of year again. For all those language lovers out there, have a sit after all the gift unwrapping is said and done and take in a little Christmas linguistics fun. Here are some long and perhaps not-so-long forgotten words associated with(…)


6 Gift Ideas Perfect for Language Learners

Sometimes the holidays can be more a season of stress than festive cheer, especially if you’re agonising over what to get who (not to mention what to buy for that one friend who seems to already have everything). If you know someone who is learning a new language, or you are a language learner yourself,(…)


6 Amazing Jobs that Require You to Know More than One Language

Everyone has different goals or reasons for learning another language, but no matter what yours are I’m sure you’ve already seen some of the great benefits of acquiring a second or third tongue. But wouldn’t it be great if your language skills could translate into more career opportunities and chances to earn money? It turns(…)


Dyslexia and Learning a Foreign Language

Dyslexia as defined by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke is “difficulty with phonological processing (the manipulation of sounds), spelling, and/or rapid visual-verbal responding. Individuals typically read at levels significantly lower than expected despite having normal intelligence.” Approximately 10-15 percent of English speakers deal with dyslexia on some level “affecting over 40 million American(…)


5 Language Learning Tips You Should Absolutely Ignore

Whenever you set out to learn something completely new, it seems like there’s always quite a few people full of tips on how best to accomplish your goal. While advice from someone who has been there and done that can be great, it’s important to know which tips are really the most effective and which(…)


Taipei Night Markets 101, Part 2: Things to Know Before you Go

Last week we covered the very basics of Taipei night markets in Part 1. Now that the stage has been set, we’re going to talk about getting you prepared. So without further ado, on with the show! 1. Bring: An open mind Forget all your homeland standards of sanitation, culinary taste and tradition, and human(…)


Taipei Night Markets 101, Part 1: A Brief Introduction

Depending on your perspective, Taipei’s night markets are either popular tourist destinations or mundane features of everyday life. The stereotypical Taipei night market (yèshì 夜市) is a combination of North American farmer’s market, flea market, and low-budget amusement arcade, while sharing similarities with a souk (Arabian Peninsula), bazaar (Middle East), mercado (Spain), tianguis (Mexico), and/or palengke(…)


English Speakers: You Already Know these 30 Dutch Words

Even though I’ve been trying to study Dutch for years (for heritage’s sake), I have to agree that sometimes it does seem rather alien. At first, I thought learning my grandfather’s language wouldn’t be hard. For one, I was convinced my tongue and vocal chords were genetically predisposed to making weird guttural sounds. (For this, you’d(…)


The Key to Success? Talk to Yourself More Often

How many times have you been walking around the grocery store talking to yourself? “Okay, John, don’t forget the milk,” you say out loud. Or sometimes you catch yourself debating on which colour shoes you want: “Alright, but if I get the blue ones, they’re not going to match anything I own.” Perhaps you’re even(…)