Every now and then I am asked how to learn German as quickly and effectively as possible. Well I could tell you a lot about cognitive and megacognitive strategies, about communication methods and certain learning strategies.
And as so often in life, each of these strategies carries – as we say in German – “ein Körnchen Wahrheit”. There are many good didactic methods for learning a foreign language.
In my experience, however, it takes a certain emotional connection to learn a language quickly: you have to be a little bit in love with the culture or people of the country whose language you want to learn.
Maybe you have experienced it by yourself? Students in my courses often learn the language like crazy when they want to talk to Germans (in the best case, are in love with a German), find Germany attractive and identify with the country in some kind. As a language coach, I can contribute to this by emphasizing the strong sides of German culture – and making them want to learn more and more about Germany and its culture.
Conversely, if someone does not like Germany at all or finds the German culture with its strictness and correctness ugly, then he will not learn the language in the long run even with the best learning strategies.
Emotions, as the latest brain research shows, play a central role in sustainable learning processes.