Episodes

  • When was the last time you sang a song in your target language? What about dancing in it?
    In today's interview, you'll learn what it means to connect to a language through music, and how the culture-first approach helped my guest Tamara Marie from Spanish con Salsa discover new connections, experiences and even insights into her own ancestry.
    The origins of Salsa as a music style and a way of life
    How the song Rebelión by Joe Aroyo changed Tamara's life as a language learner
    How learning Spanish helped Tamara connect to her ancestry as a black woman in the USA
    Why the Caribbean music scene can teach you an authentic and diverse way of speaking Spanish
    How to switch off your thinking mind as a language learner
    Bilingual Episode
    I took the opportunity to ask Tamara a few questions in Spanish in this episode. You will hear her reply in Spanish and conduct the conversation like that for about 10 minutes. If you are not a Spanish learner, don't worry as we'll always switch back to English.
    Here I always like to remember what the late Ron Gullekson from Language Surfer told me: "in a new language, I like to get uncomfortable as early as possible." So enjoy the challenge and enjoy the practice!
    Gracias to Lindsay Williams for her linguistic support in Spanish. and to you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community. Special Guest: Tamara Marie.

  • Have you ever broken a streak or lost track? Powered by lots of fun real life examples, this episode will help you learn how to stay consistent in language learning.
    Put this on your schedule and structure your time.
    Be super specific
    Trust your gut and choose what you enjoy and what challenges you
    If you lose your streak, reconnect to your original motivation
    Thank you to Dela for this episode introduction.
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community
    Women in Language!
    The Women in Language conference is back on 17-20 September. Sign up here to be notified when the ticket sales go live. (http://www.womeninlanguage.com)

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  • We're discussing all things pen & paper! We discuss the state of handwritten notes in modern language learning, how we do it ourselves, and why pen and paper could be the key to giving you an everlasting language memory.
    Also featured: Soap operas, Lindsay's a student again, and the Women in Language conference running 17-20 September 2020: www.womeninlanguage.com
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community

  • This week's listener question comes from Lee, a new online tutor looking for guidance on the difference between community and professional tutoring on italki.
    After working at italki as a community tutor, I want to branch out and become a professional tutor. My lessons are extremely structured and informative although I am not a professional teacher so I was wondering as to whether or not I should move to a professional tutor. I think typically professional teachers are seen to be more prepared and knowledgeable. I’m not too sure to be honest. I just know that I love online education!
    What does it mean to act like a professional as a tutor?
    How good do you have to be at a language before you can teach it?
    Why are there community and professional tutors on italki?
    What qualification do you need to get their professional status?
    How can you start going full-time as a professional online language teacher?
    Thank you to Gosia for this episode introduction.
    Teacher Chat https://files.fireside.fm/file/fireside-uploads/images/9/9103f3da-a263-4bfe-b5a3-58649ff9b5f7/xf8oQmNK.png

  • Imagine you're walking down the street in another country, bumping to lots of cool new people and chatting about big and small life questions with them. And all that in another language!
    Can't quite travel there? Not ready to speak fluently? Don't worry, Easy Languages has your back!
    This hugely popular YouTube channel brings you conversations with people from the street, sharing authentic language and culture from dozens of countries. It all started in Münster in Germany, when a group of students recorded themselves shouting "Hallo!" at random people during a media workshop led by Janusz Hamerski.
    Today Easy Languages is a global organisation making videos in over 32 languages. In this Fluent Show episode, you'll get to know co-founder Janusz and producer Manuel.
    Bilingual Episode
    This episode contains a lot of fun conversation in English and a little fun conversation in German. Janusz and Manuel are German speakers like me, so we switched into German for a little bit to give you some listening practice as a learner. If you are not a German learner, don't worry as we'll always switch back to English and make sure you don't miss anything.
    Here I always like to remember what the late Ron Gullekson from Language Surfer told me: "in a new language, I like to get uncomfortable as early as possible." So enjoy the challenge and enjoy the German practice!
    👩🏾 👩🏿‍🦱🖤 Event Announcement
    And one more thing I want you to know about: The Sisters Only Language Summit (http://www.sistersonlylanguagesummit.com) is running its second virtual summit on 25 July 2020. This event is going to be fantastic, so make sure you check it out and support them. Fluent Show listeners who are students and women of African descent can apply for one of 3 scholarship tickets that are donated by the Fluent Show.
    Special Guests: Janusz Hamerski and Manuel Salmann.

  • We're halfway through the year, so today's episode is an in-depth review of how it's gone so far.
    This is my #clearthelist entry for July 2020.
    I'm sharing how it's going with my Chinese studies, my Welsh language, and what I want to try next. You are invited to review your year and make notes as you follow along with this episode.
    Here are a few questions you can use for reviewing your own progress:
    What are the 3 biggest experiences that shaped your first half of 2020?
    What are 3 things you want to remember about learning languages in the last 6 months?
    How different do you feel about your language skills compared to the start of the year?
    What are you working on right now?
    Which specific actions will you take to make language learning progress in the next 30 days?
    Thank you to Cait for this episode introduction.
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community

  • After a ridiculous change of topic from ✊🏾 to 🍷 and a discussion of what's new in emoji world, Lindsay and I go back to the deep, deep well that is talking about Duolingo!
    We both have the apps on our phones and we use Duolingo in different ways. How do you use yours?
    We Shared These Tips for Getting More Out of Duolingo
    Use the "Practice" button to get unlimited hearts and review what you've learnt before
    Write down sentences from Duolingo lessons in your notebook to practice in a new environment
    Make sure you read the "Tips" for handy explanations that give you helpful context
    Instead of letting the course lead you, use its "Test Out" feature to check in on your learning progress
    Check out the Duolingo Stories to use your target language
    Always use the Streak Freeze and Double or Nothing features to boost your little Duolingo gems
    Add friends on Duolingo (I'm kerstin_fluent)
    Switch your source language to access even more courses in unusual languages, such as Guarani and Catalan through Spanish
    Check the forums for questions & use the vocab lists (great link below)
    Go to the meet-ups to meet fellow Duolingo fans
    Read the Duolingo blog for interesting stats
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community

  • You say "either" and I say "either"
    You say "neither" I say "neither"
    "Either" "either", "neither" "neither"
    Let's call the whole thing off
    George & Ira Gershwin
    This week on the Fluent Show, I'm answering a listener question about accents.
    What is an accent?
    Can your accent change even though you're not trying?
    Is it possible to learn a different accent?
    Can you get an accent by listening to podcasts?
    ...and more mysteries!
    Listen to the episode to hear my answers to these questions and find out why my approach when speaking a foreign language is like this:
    DO learn pronunciation (IPA if you like)
    DON’T worry about your accent
    Thank you to Antonio for this episode introduction.
    Want to read my full show notes?
    If you want to get more details and full notes for this episode and all the solo episodes of the Fluent Show, head to Patreon (http://www.patreon.com/fluentshow) and back this podcast for any amount of your choice.
    Where do you listen?
    Take a photo of where you're listening to the Fluent Show and share it on social media to say hello! Here's where you can tag me:
    * Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/thefluentshow
    * Instagram: http://instagram.com/kerstin_fluent/ and #thefluentshow
    * Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/fluentlanguage

  • The intro of today's episode makes reference to the 8th of the month. This is because the episode publication was delayed by a week after recording to allow all listeners to get a chance to hear the Fluent Show statement about racism. Right, let's get to it:
    When there's something étrange in your vocabulaire, who you gonna call? A LINGUIST!
    Today I've got a very special linguist on the show: Mathilde from Elles Comme Linguistes, a French YouTube channel dedicated to linguistics pour tous! Mathilde visited the Fluent show to talk about what linguistics is all about and what it is like to do a PhD in Paris 🇫🇷.
    "Traditional education is about languages, not linguistics."
    In this show, we focused on learning more about loanwords like champagne in English, mousepad in French, kartofle in Polish and beamer in German. Every language has loanwords, but
    Why do so many loanwords come from English?
    What decides why some words come into the language as loanwords?
    Should you use them when you're learning a language yourself?
    BILINGUAL EPISODE ALERT
    This podcast is a bilingual episode, meaning that we occasionally switched into speaking French. This type of episode is fantastic listening practice if you are a French learner. If you are an excellent French speaker, I apologise for all the mistakes I make. If you are not an experienced French learner, there will be some parts of the podcast that you don’t understand. But like all language learners, you’re not alone in that feeling.
    I always remember what the lovely Ron Gullekson said: “I want to get used to feeling uncomfortable.” So fear not, trust that we will come back to English again and again, and the interview will still be interesting for you.
    Thank you to Mathilde Hutin for this episode introduction.
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community (http://www.patreon.com/fluentshow) Special Guest: Mathilde Hutin.

  • I really want to say "this goes without saying" about many of the things I'm saying to you today. But maybe it does not.
    Racism is not welcome here.
    Thank you for listening to today's episode.
    And as maker of the Fluent Show, I can also tell you that every person who works on the team stands behind this message. Please read Lindsay's very well-written perspective here (https://www.lindsaydoeslanguages.com/lets-talk-about-racism/).
    Here are 4 wonderful Fluent Show guests who have represented the voices of black language learners.
    Please read more about them and how impressive they are. There are TWO bilingual interviews in here:
    👍🏾 https://www.fluent.show/guests/nicole - Nicole Miles
    👍🏿 https://www.fluent.show/guests/khady - Khady Ndoye (bilingual episode French/English)
    👍🏽 https://www.fluent.show/guests/shahidah - Ann Shahidah (bilingual episode German/English)
    👍🏼 https://www.fluent.show/guests/chenelle Chenelle Patrice Hancock
    I'm proud that they came and spent time with me on the show. I know my work isn't done and I'll continue to make it a priority to invite guests from ALL backgrounds.
    How to get in touch:
    Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/fluentlanguage)
    Email kerstin@fluentlanguage.co.uk or hello@fluentlanguage.co.uk
    Instagram (http://instagram.com/kerstin_fluent/)
    or use the chatbox in the corner at www.fluentlanguage.co.uk

  • You're probably taking your fair share of online lessons in your target languages these days. Add to that a few Zoom hangouts, maybe some extra business meetings...and soon they add up to 10-15 hours of online meetings per week.
    For many online language teachers, this kind of online meeting schedule is part of a standard working week. It really is exhausting!
    In this week's episode, I'm helping an online teacher who has experienced this for herself and sent a call for help to the Fluent Show.
    Here is the question:
    I'm an english tutor and have started teaching online because of the pandemic..you see, I notice that the "video conference" situation drains so much energy from me. I wonder if that happens with other students not used to the online class. Did you ever feel that with online lessons? Do you have tips to avoid that burn out from virtual meetings? Thank you!!
    Listen to the episode to hear more about how to improve your focus, your environment, and your future prospects as an online teacher.
    If you want to send your own Teacher Chat Question to the show, email it to hello@fluentlanguage.co.uk
    Teacher Chat https://files.fireside.fm/file/fireside-uploads/images/9/9103f3da-a263-4bfe-b5a3-58649ff9b5f7/xf8oQmNK.png
    Thank you to Estephania from Panama for this week's Listener Intro

  • Every 6 months or so, the Fluent Show brings you a new set of top tools. These are our recommendations for language learning tools you might have missed. It's a LONG episode so follow along with our full list of top tools on the blog if you like. (https://www.fluentlanguage.co.uk/blog/top-tools-2016-2020)
    Intro: Lindsay's Language Marathon and our italki Language Challenge progress
    Top Tools Hall of Fame
    Top Tools has now been running since 2016, with a total of 42 tools recommended. It's easy to lose track so it was time to declutter the list. In this episode, you'll hear about the best, the ultimate, the unmissable Top Tools Hall of Fame from 2016 to 2020.
    We revisit EVERY SINGLE tool recommendation in the podcast so you can hear how they work and which ones we still love. Then we hand out awards. Here are the headline winners:
    The best tools for EVERY language learner:
    Lingq (https://www.lingq.com/?referral=fluentkerstin)
    Clozemaster (https://www.clozemaster.com/fluentshow)
    Lyricstraining (https://lyricstraining.com/)
    Lingodeer (https://www.lingodeer.com/affiliate/Deer1527750402884515729)
    Teach Yourself Library (https://library.teachyourself.com/)
    ALL of these top tools have web and app based versions and lots of languages available for you to pick from.
    The Beginners Badge for people who want good beginner materials goes to 50 Languages (http://www.50languages.com).
    The Minority Medal for a tool that is best if you are interested in learning a minority language goes to the LiveLingua Project (https://www.livelingua.com/project/).
    The Goblet of Recognition for a tool that we brought back again and again goes to VOCAB NOTEBOOKS like these (https://www.instagram.com/p/B_fEsVgnEmO/). In America, Gregg or Pitman ruled notebooks might do this job for you.
    Click here to see the full list of top tools from 2016-2020 (https://www.fluentlanguage.co.uk/blog/top-tools-2016-2020)
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community.
    Some of the links in these show notes are affiliate links supporting the show.

  • This week on the show, I answer a cry for help from a frustrated listener in Denmark.
    Imagine you can speak your target language beautifully. But when it comes to the person you love most, suddenly you clam up and worry and you realise you can't speak to her at all!
    Why does this happen? What's going on? Listen to hear more about these three problems and how anyone can solve them and get things moving again:
    English is your life admin language
    You struggle to switch languages with your partner
    Bilingual family life crowds out your target language
    Thank you to Camille for this episode introduction.
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community!

  • Do you dream of travelling the world and living in other countries?
    Want to see it all, live everywhere, and enjoy the best every country has to offer?
    In today's episode, you'll meet someone who knows how to do all that! Sara Maria Hasbun is a language-loving entrepreneur who loves to travel the world. And she's as awesome as all of that sounds! In today's episode, Sara shares her story and experiences, including recent lockdown life under Coronavirus in Beijing. It's a motivating conversation with so many facets.
    Here's what you'll learn in this interview:
    What is linguistics and how does it look different in British and American universities?
    How to prepare for living in another country
    How to learn a language in country, without shouting at people in the bar
    Where to get authentic reading practice in Chinese (and any other language)
    Women in the polyglot world, and why we still hold back instead of showing our full talents
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community.
    Do you teach online?
    If you want to get more out of your teaching work, become a member of Teach & Thrive. It's your membership community for ambitious online teachers, created by me and Lindsay Williams.
    Click here to try us out for $10 (https://lindsaydoeslanguages.thrivecart.com/teach-thrive-pp-monthly/)(use code GIMMETEN) and learn how to podcast with me in our May masterclass. Special Guest: Sara Maria Hasbun.

  • Welcome back! I start by sharing my love for 爱情公寓 (iPartment) on Yabla, and answer Sara's question:
    What’s the best tool you use for making sure you get some language learning in every day?
    To answer this question, I talk you through the Language Habit Toolkit (https://school.fluentlanguage.co.uk/p/the-language-habit-toolkit) method which brings together psychology, motivation, and a lot of handy templates that get you started immediately.
    Here's the system in a nutshell:
    Set up your vision for language learning so that you're clear about why you are here.
    List your actions. You want to set it up so that there are varied options available to you every day, no matter if you’re out and about or in your bedroom or in the kitchen. They can be tiny but they have to be listed.
    Now, next track your daily contact wherever you like, like in a habit tracking app or notebook or on your corkboard.
    Finally, do something with what you’re tracking. I recommend a review of some kind. Reviewing is more of a journaling based activity because it is a reflexive exercise.
    Help the Fluent Show Get 100 Reviews
    This week, please leave the show a rating or review on Apple Podcasts (https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/creative-language-learning-podcast/id780485096?mt=2) or Podchaser (https://www.podchaser.com/podcasts/the-fluent-show-5606).
    Download my Guide to Building a Language Habit for free!
    It comes with my newsletter and a whole library full of language learning guides. You can get this right on the homepage at www.fluentlanguage.co.uk
    Thank you to Leah for this episode introduction.
    Apologies for the pops - I hear them too so don't @ me and I'll work on it.

  • Lindsay is back on the Fluent Show today and we're talking about the best books about languages and linguistics.
    *NOTE: The Fluent Show is now on a podcast break until 6 May, but you can catch up with mini episodes of "Fluent in Isolation" at Patreon.com (http://www.patreon.com/fluentshow)
    We discussed the following books - all linked below on amazon.com and on hive.co.uk.
    Popular Science
    David Crystal’s ANYTHING, out of which we discussed
    Encyclopedia of Language
    You say Potato
    Spell it out
    Becoming Fluent by Roger Kreuz and Richard Roberts
    Lingo and Babel by Gaston Dorren
    Because Internet by Gretchen McCulloch
    Academic Books
    Teaching and Researching: Motivation by Zóltan Dörnyei and Ema Ushioda
    An Introduction to Foreign Language Learning and Teaching by Keith Johnson
    Guide/Entertainment
    Tingo by Adam Jacot de Boinot
    Fluent Forever by Gabriel Wyner
    How to Speak Any Language Fluently by Alex Rawlings
    Fluent in 3 Months by Benny Lewis
    PLUG: Oh hey, I wrote some too! (www.fluentlanguage.co.uk/boxset)
    Want the best textbooks and phrasebooks for language learning?
    Click here to discover our other book-themed episode about the best language learning textbooks. (https://www.fluent.show/174)
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community (http://www.patreon.com/fluentshow)

  • Hot Potato News: Scottish Gaelic
    Learn about the true pronunciation of this language's name, and why it's important to get it right.
    Where and How to Start Teaching Online
    It’s a great time to start offering online lessons because
    Life has just moved online
    Your school or in-person tutoring may just have been cancelled
    You can connect with people around the world, and right now that’s even more rewarding and exciting than usual
    In fact, any time is a great time because working as an online language teacher
    Allows you to work location independently - as long as you can use your computer and have safe wifi, you’re ready to go
    You’re independent to work the hours that suit YOU
    Is a great stepping stone and teaches you endless things about being a good leader
    If all that sounds like your kind of party, then listen to this week's episode in detail for 5 killer questions that will help you think about online teaching in a professional way.
    Recommended Teaching Resources
    I have 3 offers that will support you even further as you build an online teaching income:
    Online Live Lessons course (http://www.fluentlanguage.co.uk/livelessoncourse) - if you’re brand new, this is a good starting point and covers all the basics of where to teach, how to do contracts and get paid
    The Email Set for Teachers (https://www.gum.co/nobrainer) - nail every step of the booking process so you can weed out the time wasters and get paid securely
    Teach & Thrive - this is a membership community with monthly masterclasses for online teachers. Get the first month of your membership for a $10 trial price
    Thank you to Gosia for this episode's introduction in Polish.

  • "In languages, when you want to learn, you learn."
    Steve Kaufmann is a language learner from Canada who has studied over 17 languages so far. He is an advocate of reading in other languages, even from the start...and turns out this is something he did even back in the 60s.
    I've met Steve in person a few times at events like the Polyglot Gathering and Langfest, and he is ALWAYS full of energy and excitement about the opportunity of learning another language. He's a motivating presence!
    "It's all about getting your brain used to reading and hearing the new language."
    What I loved most about this interview is the sheer enthusiasm that Steve brings to the topic of language learning. It's evident that he loves to learn and enjoys access to every single new word that he can get.
    Steve's attitude is something that I have heard from polyglots and language lovers very often: He approaches languages fearlessly, saying that it doesn't worry about whether he can do it. Anything that he can't figure out, he'll get there eventually.
    "Some people wanna learn it NOW, but they can't learn it now."
    This level of trust and self-confidence was so much fun to witness in the interview -- listen out to how Steve discusses mistakes and slow learning, emphasizing that immediate progress is not part of language learning. His advice? Have a positive attitude and be grateful about what you can do now.
    Check out LingQ
    Steve is the co-founder of language learning app LingQ, and they're currently sponsoring this show! So if you enjoy his attitude, check it out today and learn a language with LingQ for free at www.fluentlanguage.co.uk/readmore.
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community. Special Guest: Steve Kaufmann.

  • Word of the day: Hamsterkaufen - to hoard or panic buy. 🐹
    Listener Elizabeth asks for advice about what to do when she remembers words in her target language on one day, but finds that they've disappeared the next day. It's a dilemma: Should she review and get the information perfect before moving on? Or just stick with the programme and hope that things will stick eventually?
    This show contains plenty of great ideas and tips about digital flashcard systems, vocabulary learning, and how memory works when it comes to vocabulary learning and boosting your memory for keeping vocabulary in your mind longer.
    If you want to take your vocab further and build yourself this effective system for getting better at remembering vocabulary using the three steps I’ve described in this podcast, check out my course Your Solid Vocab Memory. (https://school.fluentlanguage.co.uk/p/vocab)
    Thank you to Kris Broholm (http://www.actualfluency.com) for this episode introduction. Kris is the host of the Actual Fluency podcast.
    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community (http://www.patreon.com/fluentshow)

  • What makes a language textbook great? Why should you use a language textbook? And which ones are the best ones out there?In today's episode, Lindsay and I sat down to dig through our language bookshelves and bring you a HUGE list of language textbooks that we have loved.Click or tap here to download a PDF of all book recommendations (https://successful-writer-7680.ck.page/1d76545aa1)This PDF is a great file full of links to both Amazon and Hive, so you can browse and order all the books you want.Lindsay and I discovered we have very different pop culture references for the word "library". Are you a Lindsay thinking of this..

    via GIPHY

    or a Kerstin thinking of this:

    via GIPHY

    Thank you for listening to the Fluent Show! If you enjoyed this episode, please consider supporting the show by leaving a review in your podcast app or becoming a member of our Patreon community at patreon.com/fluentshowIf you're an online teacher, check out Lindsay's Online Teaching Starter Kit (https://www.lindsaydoeslanguages.com/otsk) this week.