Author Archive | meredithkreisa

12 Incredible Memrise Alternatives for Unbeatable Learning

Just because they’re totally beguiling doesn’t mean they’re your soulmate. No, we’re not talking about that person you just swiped right on. We’re talking about language learning tools. And while popular options are undoubtedly attractive, there are plenty of fish …

Try Them All! 7 Babbel Alternatives That Might Work for You

Some things are irreplaceable. You can’t exchange your mostly-eaten box of cereal for a brand new box. You can’t trade in your beat-up Ford Pinto for a brand new BMW. But sometimes, the right substitution can be great. If you’re …

More Fun Than Quidditch: “Harry Potter” Language Learning

Expecto Learnonum! Okay, maybe that’s not a real spell, but it should be. After all, “Harry Potter” can help you learn languages, and we’re not just talking about Parseltongue. Of all the language learning books on the market, it’s possible …

33 Fab Foreign Language Writing Prompts for All Levels

When your language teachers and tutors advise you to get more writing practice, it can be hard to follow their guidance. If your daily life isn’t action-packed, keeping a diary in your target language can get boring and repetitive, …

“Love” in 20 Different Languages (and More!)

The language of love is deep, complex and beautiful. …But so is actually learning a language! And there might be nothing better than infusing your learning with an extra dose of love and romance (and no, we don’t just …

Pimsleur Alternatives: 14 Fast Tracks to Language Success

Shopping for anything can be tough. And shopping for an online language learning course can be especially complicated. There is a nearly infinite number of options. Choosing which foreign language to learn was hard enough. How can you ever …

Know Before You Go! Bathroom Vocab in 9 Different Languages

Sometimes, emergencies happen. You just can’t avoid them. While fires, medical issues and catastrophic events like Starbucks discontinuing your favorite drink might seem life-threatening, one emergency is more awkward and embarrassing than all the rest. Yes. Bathroom emergencies. And when …

How to Become a Translator: 7 Steps to Your Dream Job

Everyone has a dream. Or maybe a sueño. Or perhaps yours is a мечта. Or a rêve. But if you really enjoy toggling between all these options, there’s a strong chance that your dream is being a translator. In …

Mo’ Money, No Problems: 5 Foreign Language Scholarships

Learning a language for free isn’t for everyone. You might want the credits and/or the experience of a more formal education. However, studying a language in college can be pricey and not everyone can afford it. In addition to …

How to Conquer the 4 Top Foreign-language Speaking Fears

Xenoglossophobia: The fear of foreign languages. When it comes to using a foreign language, even many well-educated speakers get sweaty palms, an upset stomach and the urge to find the nearest hiding place. And beyond just making you feel uncomfortable, …

6 Ways to Keep Your Language Study on a Roll After Duolingo

Among language students, Duolingo certainly has a reputation as being one of the cool kids. Using spaced repetition, Duolingo presents students with material in an organized manner designed to maximize learning while minimizing time and effort. But …

Introducing the Brand New FluentU Android App!

App envy: The sudden onset of covetousness upon seeing someone has a cool app that you don’t have. Symptoms: Secretly playing with said app when that someone leaves their device unattended. Intense desire to download app for oneself. Treatment: Only …

Fluency Unwrapped: 6 Ways to Answer “Am I Fluent?”

It’s a question that has plagued mankind since the beginning of time. Okay, maybe the beginning of time is a bit of an exaggeration. But it’s a question that’s probably plagued mankind for the last 50,000 to two million years…

The Adventurer’s Guide to Studying a Language Abroad

Adventure. Intrigue. Romance (maybe). No, we’re not talking about the latest big screen hit. We’re talking about studying a language abroad. While it might not have the star power or the dramatic background music of your favorite film, learning …

Hypnosis? To Learn a Language? Here Are the Facts!

You are getting sleepy. You are getting very, very sleepy. You will only respond to innovative language learning techniques.  When you read “you are getting sleepy,” did you immediately picture a swinging watch or hypnotic swirl? We did. But hypnosis…

5 Resources for Chatbots to Be Your Language Learning BFFs

They interact like humans, but they’re not human. They’re built of the latest technology, tweaked and reworked to perfection. But don’t call them “hosts” or expect them to let you shoot them over and over again—this isn’t “Westworld.” We’re talking …

Laughs for Learners! 10 Cartoons in 10 Foreign Languages

Mickey and Minnie. Tom and Jerry. Fred and Wilma Flintstone. Some couples go together naturally—kind of like cartoons and language learning. Okay, so they might not sound as cutesy together as your favorite cartoon couple, but cartoons and language …

The 6 Most Bingeable Language Learning Roku Channels

Watching stuff on Roku is entertaining… but not always productive. Studying a language is productive… but not always entertaining. But what if you want it both ways? Can’t we have our fun and get fluent, too? Luckily, learning a …

“What Language Should I Take in College?” 5 Big Contenders

College. It’s a time for parties, required courses and decisions you’ll regret. But there’s one thing you should never regret: learning a second language. A lot of colleges and universities require language education before you graduate. Even if your …

Mission: Lead an Exciting Double Life with Dual-language Books

Some language learners are leading double lives. They switch between languages willy-nilly, sometimes with only a quick sideways glance to confirm. Yeah, they play it so cool. And they’re admired and envied by many. That’s because a double life isn’t …

4 YouTube Channels to Help You Learn Multiple Languages

YouTube. It’s everyone’s favorite video sharing site. But YouTube is for so much more than uploading videos of ill-advised stunts. It’s also a language student’s dream come true. An endless supply of free learning material? Yes, please! With YouTube, you …

Light Up Your Brain with 10 Quotes About Language Learning

“There’s no place like home.” “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” “Winter is coming.” Whether you mean for them to or not, chances are your favorite quotes work their way into your daily life. But quotes …

MOOC It Up: 5 Top Sources for Language Learning MOOCs

Language courses can be daunting. Whether it’s the price, the convenience or even just the uncomfortable plastic chairs, taking a language course can have its drawbacks. But when you’re learning a language as an adult, sometimes you need a …

Let’s Get Classy! 4 Language Level Classification Systems

Classifications may seem kind of stuffy. Nerdy, even. But they’re super important. They’re used to distinguish between different animal species. They’re used to organize libraries so you can find your favorite book easily. Heck, they’re even used to declare …

7 Ways to Take a Bite Out of the Intermediate Language Level

As an intermediate learner, there are certain challenges you’ll face. Whether you’re an intermediate Spanish learner or an intermediate German learner, the road ahead probably looks quite similar…and sometimes quite daunting. But it’s okay since you can totally …

Hungry for Fluency? Get There with Intensive and Extensive Listening

Delivery!  Here’s that large slice of listening practice you ordered. “I don’t need any more listening practice. My listening skills are perfect.” Said no language student ever. And there’s a good reason for that. Listening skills are incredibly important, …

6 Social Networks Built Just for Language Learners

Social networks are supposed to show us the freshest updates on our friend groups and in the world, right? So why is it that each day’s newsfeed seems so much like the last? Pictures of babies… News posts and comment …

8 Ways to Make Language-learning Friends and Learn Together

Being around friends is the best. They support you when you’re down. They laugh at your jokes even if they aren’t funny. They’ll even tell you you’re totally justified in being angry that unicorn-themed food just isn’t magical enough. But …

The Recipe for Becoming the Perfect Language Learner

A dash of study scheduling. Mix in some authentic target language media. And don’t forget a heaping cup of learning motivation. The recipe for language learning perfection is easier to follow than you think! Now, it’s true that you don’t …

The Dreaded Language Learning Plateau: How to Rise Above It

You’ve already come so far with your language learning. In theory, having learned even some of a language is pretty great. The view from the intermediate level should be beautiful. But it’s hard to enjoy the view when you’ve hit …

10 Untranslatable Words You Should Add to Your Vocabulary Arsenal

Sometimes you just don’t have the right word. You can stammer and gesticulate, but without the right word, you’ll be like a fish out of whatever-it-is-that-fish-live-in. And the unfortunate thing is that sometimes the word you’re looking for simply doesn’t …

8 Super Convenient Resources for Foreign Language E-books

If you’ve ever struggled in your language studies, then you’ve got something in common with Thomas Jefferson. The third president of the U.S. managed to learn four languages, but he kept books in several more—and ultimately had trouble achieving …

7 Game Apps Designed for Addictive Language Learning

Want to create your own world using nothing but 3D blocks? There’s a game for that. Want to help a plumber rescue a princess? There’s a game for that. Want to smash cute candies into smithereens? Yeah, there’s a really …