Starting Serbian? Discover When Is the Best Time to Start
by Magdalena Petrović Jelić
Making a decision to start a new language usually comes in slowly. First it occurs to us how cool would it be if we knew this new language. And we usually need some time to chew on that idea. If you’re thinking about starting Serbian, chances are that you love something – or someone – from the country, and that you’ve been thinking about that for some time.
That daydreaming will continue until you bump into a right trigger that will push you into taking the first step. And in my experience, the usual triggers coincide with two major periods when most people decide to learn Serbian or Croatian.
But are these really the best moments for starting a new language? In this video I explain when is the best time for starting Serbian and how to use that surge of motivation and avoid the disappointment many language learners face.
/Transcript of the video/
Two peak periods for starting Serbian every year
People often ask me when is the best time to start learning a language.
Over the years that I’ve been teaching Serbian, I’ve noticed that there are two peak periods every year when lots of new people contact me: in December and in May. These are the two periods when many people decide to start Serbian, or another language.
The first one is when they’re facing their winter holidays (and probably a New Year’s resolution), and the second is when they’re planning their summer vacation.
A heroic task
So, apparently, these people expect to achieve good results in a month or so: they want to start in May and get ready for their holiday in July, or they plan to start in December to get ready for January.
Then they try to learn as much as possible and they cram all the material they can find. Some even hire two teachers!
Eventually, they get tired and confused – especially if they tried to learn too much grammar at once – and they end up:
1) either disappointed,
2) or (which is better) resolved to take it all over again when they come back from their vacation.
Why this happens?
You probably ask yourself: Why this happens? The answer is simple. Because there is a limited amount of data our brain is capable of processing efficiently at a given amount of time. Also, because to remember a new word, one word, we need to see it or hear it between 5 to 10 times.
This is why we need to give ourselves plenty of time to learn a new language, especially if it’s a new language family for us – which is often the case with the Serbian or Croatian language.
Question the “miracle solutions”
And anybody who promises miracles, like „learn this language in this many days“ is misleading you.
First, ask that person to define what does „to learn a language“ mean? To which level? Up to what point? What are you going to be able to do with what they’re promising.
Setting up a realistic goal
What you can do is that you can commit to get to a certain level in certain amount of time, like for example to get A1 in 4 months, so from 0 to A1 in 4 months, and you need a solid program to follow.
Also, you need to make a plan and stick to it: how to do it, what resources you’re going to use, how often you’re going to to study, if you’re going to take individual lessons, how many times a week, which days are you going to do that, when are you going to write your homework, how are you going to use your audio files, etc.
Anyways, give yourself at least 4 to 5 months to see noticeable progress.
The perfect time to start learning Serbian
And this is my answer to all of you who asked me „when is the best time to star learning Serbian“:
August or September is the right time to start getting ready for your winter vacation in Serbia,
and December is the perfect time to start getting ready for your summer vacation in Serbia!
In the meantime, visit serbiancourses.com and check what’s new.