Learn a Language the Fun Way
Want to get really good at a language and actually have fun along the way?
You just need the right tools, attitude, and guidance.
Howdy language lovers! I’m John Fotheringham, a linguist, author, entrepreneur, Nutritional Therapy Practitioner (NTP), and full-time silly goose. I have been learning and teaching languages for over a decade and have seen first-hand what works and what doesn’t. And what have I learned?
- Anyone can learn a language regardless of age, income, or zip code with the right attitude, methods, and materials.
- Most adult learners fail because they spend all their time learning about the language instead of actually practicing in the language.
- You DON’T need to spend thousands of dollars on classes but a little investment in the right tools and materials can go a long way.
- You DON’T need to force yourself through boring textbooks. Fun, modern, relevant materials are readily available online.
- You DON’T need to be “gifted” at languages, but you DO need to figure out what methods fit your learning style, schedule, and personality.
- You DON’T need to move abroad. Creative use of technology allows you to create an immersion environment no matter where you live.
- You DO need to maximize your exposure to the language everyday through listening and reading input and maximize your active practice through speaking and writing output.
And that’s it! You just need to show up and put in the time on a consistent basis and your brain will do the rest. We are all hard-wired to pick up the languages around us (even as adults) if you get enough input and output. The key to staying the course is actually enjoying the process by picking materials, topics, and activities that are inherently enjoyable. To that end, much of Language Mastery is dedicated to helping you pick cool tools and fun materials. Happy learning!
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My Language Learning GuidesMy comprehensive, step-by-step guides show you how to learn (working with—not against—how the adult brain works), exactly what resources to use (your time should be spent learning a language, not searching for resources), and how to have lots of fun along the way.
Master Japanese shares the tools and resources you need to learn languages the fun, modern way, leveraging technology instead of drudgery, intelligent use of psychology instead of sheer willpower, and free online resources instead of back-breaking, budget-busting books. The guide includes tips and tools to help you 1) Master all four Japanese language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing), 2) Save time and learn on your own terms (Your time should be spent actually acquiring Japanese, not searching for tools and materials), 3) Use brain-friendly methods (how to work with, not against, human psychology), and 4) Learn anywhere & everywhere (You’ll see how to create a Japanese immersion environment no matter where you happen to live).
You don’t need to spend thousands on classes. You don’t need boring textbooks. You don’t need to be good at languages. And you don’t have to move to China or Taiwan (though that’s great if you can). What you need are the right tools, “S.M.A.R.T.” goals, adult-friendly methods, and fun materials suited to your interests. This is precisely what Master Mandarin provides. I’ve been learning and teaching languages for over a decade, and have poured everything I’ve learned (and everything I wish I had known when starting out) into Master Mandarin: The Beginner’s Step-by-Step Guide to Learning Chinese the Fun Way. With the guide, you’ll have everything you need to acquire Chinese using proven strategies, free online tools, and materials you love.
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The Language Mastery PhilosophyI'm a sucker for pithy quotes. Or maybe I'm just a sucker in general. Either way, here are 10 quotes from 10 of my heroes that do a good job of summing up my philosophy about language learning and life in general.
“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” “The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.”Albert Einstein
“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.”Bruce Lee
“Fun gets done.”Khatzumoto
“Eighty percent of success is showing up.”Woody Allen
“Language is infinitely expansive and therefore horribly overwhelming if unfiltered… What you study is more important than how you study.”Tim Ferriss
“Study hard what interests you the most in the most undisciplined, irreverent and original manner possible.”Richard P. Feynman
“One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way.”Frank Smith
“In language learning, it is attitude, not aptitude, that determines success.”Steve Kaufmann
“Where you are isn’t what decides whether or not you’ll be successful. Attitude beats latitude (and longitude) every time. It’s more about creating an immersion environment and exposing yourself to native speakers.”Benny Lewis
“Excellence is never an accident. It is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, and intelligent execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives. Choice, not chance, determines your destiny.”Aristotle