Are you taking the life-changing step of learning Persian?
If it’s your first foreign language, then you’ve probably heard that the first is always the most difficult – and after that, each one becomes easier.
Is this because your brain somehow becomes better at memorizing words, like a muscle that grows stronger with exercise?
Perhaps partly. But we believe the real reason is that experienced language learners develop a deeper understanding of which strategies and techniques work, and which ones don’t work. This allows them to focus on techniques that are useful while skipping ones that aren’t useful.
If Persian is your first foreign language and you’re wondering what you can do to speed up your progress, we are sharing 10 tried and tested strategies that will help accelerate your learning.
This way, even if you’ve never learned a different language before, you won’t need to wait to discover these ideas for yourself.
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1- Do Some Persian Every Day
The most important thing you can do when learning the Persian language is to work at it every day. It’s much better to study for 15-20 minutes each day than for four hours once a week.
If you learn a foreign language every day, even languages like Chinese, Vietnamese, or Arabic are easy. But if you practice only once a week, even something relatively simple like Persian becomes next to impossible.
It doesn’t matter what you do during your study time, but as long as you do something. But by setting aside a short study session of only half an hour or 45 minutes every day – and sticking to it – you will see yourself make rapid progress.
2- Feel The Fear And Make Mistakes Anyway In Persian
If the First Golden Rule of learning Persian is practicing every day, then the Second Golden Rule is not being afraid of making mistakes.
Many people feel uncomfortable when speaking a new language like Persian because they worry about saying something wrong and looking stupid. Yet one of the keys to becoming a successful language learner is accepting you will make some mistakes and being comfortable with them.
The best and the most successful language learners are those who are willing to try. Please don’t imagine these people make fewer mistakes than everyone else. In fact, the opposite is true. They make lots of mistakes when they speak out, and that’s precisely why they succeed.
When you learn Persian, of course, you will make mistakes. You need to accept this and realize that nobody will laugh at you. Every time you make a mistake, you’re learning. And making mistakes is one of the most important things you can do in the language learning process.
3- Don’t Just Study Persian, Practise
There’s a big difference between studying and practicing Persian.
- Studying is when you learn new grammar, expressions, or Persian vocab from a textbook.
- Practicing is where you take your Persian knowledge and try it out in the real world.
Whether you’re taking classes or learning by yourself independently, you can be the most dedicated student in the world but if you don’t practice your Persian, it just won’t stick. To speed up your learning, you need to find opportunities to speak Persian.
Right from the beginning, please seize every chance to practice what little you know. Even if you only repeat the same 10 phrases about your job or where you come from, you’re laying firm foundations upon which the rest of your Persian will be built.
4- Practise Your Persian Out Loud
Always practice out loud. Thinking about the Persian words is not enough and whispering them under your breath won’t cut it. When you practice Persian, make sure you speak out in a big, confident voice.
There’s something special about speaking Persian aloud that helps fix words and sentences in your long-term memory.
It’s like learning to play music. You can’t learn a piece just by memorizing the notes on the page and imagining the tune. But by playing the notes in sequence over and over again, they quickly become second nature and you no longer need to think about what you’re doing, and you can learn it better.
Learning Persian or any language is the same.
5- Talk To Yourself In Persian
There is a common misconception that you need to practice conversation with native Persian speakers for it to have any value. It is good if you can have a conversation with a native speaker. But that doesn’t mean that if you can’t have a conversation, part of your language learning process is incomplete.
While you will benefit from the chance to speak with native speakers, the simple act of speaking in Persian is always beneficial, even if you make mistakes that aren’t corrected.
If you have a learning buddy who is also studying Persian, you can practice together. You don’t need to speak perfectly – and probably you will make mistakes – but simply thinking about how to form sentences and trying to say them is an essential part of the learning Persian process.
However, even if you don’t have a learning buddy, you can still practise – by speaking Persian to yourself!
This might seem odd at first, but this technique really works. Try it for just 5 or 10 minutes a day and you will notice your progress. If you get into the habit of chatting to yourself in the Persian language whenever you’re alone, you’ll see a huge improvement in fluency.
YouTube Farsi Lessons:
- Learn Farsi in 100 Days: The Ultimate Crash Course to Learning Farsi Fast
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- 200 Absolutely Essential Persian Verbs
6- Talk To Your Cat – Or Talk To The TV In Persian
Another option is your cat or goldfish. They might not answer back. But they will make excellent language partners for you to practice Persian with.
Or try this.
Let’s tell a story about someone who was learning English. His spoken English was excellent and his pronunciation was almost great.
So his English teacher asked how he was doing it. He explained that every night, he watched TV in English, and when the people on TV spoke, he answered them back in English as if they were talking to him!
We know, again, it might sound a bit crazy, but he is the proof that it works. So why not try it in Persian?
7- Use A Language Exchange App
They allow you to find native Persian speakers who want to practice English. With these apps, you can also set up a language exchange to practice together and help each other learn.
You can start off your chatting by text or sending voice messages. But once you feel more confident, you can move on to phone calls or video calls, all through these apps.
8- Always Speak In Full Persian Sentences
When you speak, whether in class or in real life, make sure you always use full Persian sentences. Yes, native Persian speakers might sometimes give monosyllabic answers. But you’re not a native Persian speaker and you need the practice.
Don’t be lazy. Whenever you use Persian, force yourself to always speak in full sentences. If you don’t make the effort and try, you won’t benefit.
I also believe that the same is true when you are typing in a chat. Native Persian speakers may use all kinds of shortened internet slang and it might seem cool to learn some, but you’ll benefit more from writing out full and correct sentences. Pay attention to accents too.
9- Listen To Podcasts & The Radio, Watch TV & Films & Read Books In Persian
There’s so much else you can do to speed up your Persian learning and it goes back to our very first point about trying to do some Persian every day. It doesn’t matter what you do: as long as you make Persian a part of your daily routine, your language ability will benefit.
Once your Persian reaches a high enough level, it also opens up the world of TV and radio aimed at native speakers. There are also many suitable movies for you to tackle.
Finally, you can read. This is an excellent way to improve many aspects of your Persian, but most notably vocabulary. The important key is to read copiously and to read for pleasure rather than focusing on short passages and studying them in minute detail.
And this is the difference between intensive reading and extensive reading.
10- Don’t Learn Lists Of Vocab
So far, we’ve kept everything positive and given you a list of things you should do. But we are going to finish with one negative and tell you something you really shouldn’t do.
Many people learning a foreign language for the first time seem to believe that to be successful, you need to spend time memorizing long lists of Persian vocab. However, nothing could be further from the truth.
This is just not how our brains acquire a new language. If you memorize a list of Persian vocabulary, the words will be stored in your short-term memory, where they will remain for a couple of days before disappearing.
New Persian words go into your long-term memory when you meet them in different contexts in books or conversations, Or when you push yourself to think of new ways to express your ideas and thoughts in Persian.
In short, you learn Persian words by doing everything we’ve talked about in this article. You learn new Persian vocabulary naturally in many ways. But reciting vocab lists is not one of them, please avoid it!