How can I become fluent in Persian? 5 top tips

Becoming a fluent speaker of any language is difficult, Persian included. However, it is not unattainable. Wondering if you can learn Persian on your own, how you can improve your communication skills, and how to perfect your reading skills are all well and great, as curiosity does lead to fluency.

But actually, that is only one part of it. The second part consists of dedication, hard work, and perseverance. Sounds difficult, right? Yes, but, luckily, we’re here to offer some tips on improving fluency to all those trying to learn Persian.

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1. Always keep working to improve your Persian vocabulary

Having a large vocabulary gives you greater flexibility and power of expression in Persian. Therefore, it is important that you continually work to improve your Persian vocabulary through
1) conscious study
2) passive exposure to the language
One of the biggest problems learners face when speaking Persian is that they lack the words to express what they want to say or can’t construct sentences quickly enough to hold a fluent conversation. Working on your Persian vocabulary can help with this immensely. However, you must be selective with the words and Persian phrases you choose to learn if you want to remember them.

2. Remember that listening is half of the conversation

If you want to know how to speak Persian fluently, then first learn how to be a good listener. In fact, fluency is often gained by listening to and then copying the language used by others. Persian has a wide variety of accents and regional forms so it is vital you work on your listening comprehension skills if you want to understand native speakers. To do this, try the following: watch current Persian series, films with subtitles, Youtube channels, etc. If you enjoy music, pick some of your favorite music, print off the lyrics, translate the meaning into your language and perhaps even sing along! You could also try listening to Persian audiobooks and transcribing them on paper, then compare the original printed version with your transcript to see where you went wrong. Note down any new Persian words and phrases you find useful.

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3. Be a bookworm

If you read more, it will help you to build your understanding of the language in terms of word order, idioms, grammatical constructions, and other set phrases used by native Persian speakers. If you read different articles about the same topic or books by the same author, you will find that words and Persian phrases repeat themselves time after time. Generally, the more you read similar texts, the easier it will become to understand them as you familiarise yourself with the vocabulary used.

4. Repetition

It has been proven that repetition helps us to remember information for a longer period of time. In the context of Persian, the main focus should be on the repetition of vocabulary and grammar. It is a great idea to keep a record of all your vocabulary tests and constantly look back through your notebooks to ensure this information does not go “in one ear and out the other”. Perhaps ask a Persian-speaking friend to help test your skills from time to time or automate this process via a mobile app.

5. Please use materials that cover the same topics repeatedly

This is a great way of getting to know a certain set of vocabulary well through constant exposure to the same phrases, words, and constructions. For example, after you have read 25 news articles about football you will be familiar with all the common set phrases associated with this sport. The same goes for any different topic. Try this for yourself!

some additional tips

1. Review, review, review

It’s very important to keep going over what you know – as, without revision, actually you won’t be able to retain enough to take your skills to the next level.

2. Avoid being your own worst critic

Maybe you’re extremely gifted at language learning and will soon be able to pass as a native Persian speaker. But it’s more likely that your final goal should be to reach a decent level of conversation with natives.

Why the latter? Spoken language is about communication. And actually, communication is never perfect. There’s a lot of looking for words, umming and ahhing, and struggling to express the right and correct ideas. Even in your mother tongue!

So the question is: Why put so much pressure on a second language? Your Persian interlocutors will understand you’re learning the language. Actually, they will be more patient with your imperfections if you are too. And that will result in more fun and more confidence. This takes us to our last point…

3. Learning is a journey – enjoy the climb

Yes, learning Persian has some benefits – a wider pool of potential connections and a deeper cultural understanding.

But it’s also something that needs time, dedication, and effort. So while it’s important and necessary to keep your eyes on the prize, it’s just as primordial to remember to enjoy your path to fluency.

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