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NEWS
the thread will be undergoing significant revision in the next week or so. existing links will be vetted, and the thread will be changed to try and encourage more discussion between language learners. any help from the gaia international community is greatly appreciated. please vote the thread up and use this place to chat! i can't do this alone!

what's this?
mint & peaches is a guide by myself, eden-of-mine, intended to direct users to resources they can use to teach themselves a language. and in some cases, towards tutors or places they can practice. this thread is not complete, resources and information is slowly being added. feel free to provide suggestions for sites, ask questions, etc.

contributors are
please consider donations or other thank-yous for these folks' hard work
kaeth
madame de sousa
i know nothing.
kanashii sakura uta
not british just gay
o k i e r c h a n
faith is your destiny
fayebelly
clockworkindy
seinaru ite
redfa
princessneko

how to use
if you want to know how to start learning a language online, scroll down to the guide just below. you can look for the resources listed on google, or private message anyone listed as a tutor.

contribute
this guide can certainly be expanded. i am looking for more links, and perhaps even guides written by others. i would prefer if any written guides/essays be in the style of this thread--ie, no caps. i would love for more links and more language-specific information, i cannot possibly know about every language. if you are willing to provide tutoring in any language, simply toss me a private message or better yet, post in this thread. i will post your username and users can message you for information. it is up to you to set the boundaries for what you will teach, how often, and for what. you are free to teach in this thread, i won't mind a free bump.

how to learn a language online
first thing first: you cannot learn a language, period, without a great amount of effort on your behalf. if you are not willing to put in the effort to type a few words into google, you cannot learn a new language (unless you're, say, 6 months old). you also cannot learn a language entirely online. but you can get a good start, and dirka dirka are you really reading this see if you are truly interested in learning the language on a higher level. the internet can be a good place to start, and it can be a good place to supplement your learning. it can provide access to native speakers that are not present in your current environment.

so now that that's out of the way, where should you start? if you've read that entire paragraph right above this one--complete with the hidden message--you're on the right track. you had the patience and put in the effort to read it. below this post, you will find a series of both specific and general resources. this guide will show you how to use them.

the first step is to find one of these resources that you like and that actually has your language available. your first step should be your library: a book is more reliable and has more content than a website, and probably has access to audio cd's and other benefits anyway. but your library may not always have your language, especially if it's not a major language like french or spanish or german. some of the resources, like mango languages, require that you log in from your local library in order to access them for free. but find a primary source of lessons--preferrably one with audio--to use as your foundation.

as you read the lessons, do whatever helps you learn. does it help you to write things down? write everything down. make flashcards, say the words out loud, whatever helps you. an important thing to do at this point is to make sure you understand the literal meaning of what you are being told. for example, many websites and even books will teach you phrases like "what is your name?" or "can you help me?". but it's important that you understand what you are actually saying. not only will this help you piece together the individual words later on, but it will help you begin to understand the grammar. if your book or website is only providing you with phrases, and not explaining grammar or literal meaning, you may want to consider a new place to get your lessons.

supplement, supplement, supplement. never use just one site or book. it's important that you get your information from multiple sources, even with a "foundational" resource. multiple writers can provide different tips and information. you'll want to soak in multiple explanations so you can get a better idea of just what is going on. you'll also want to confirm what you've learned by going back and watching youtube videos, etc. google translate can be a very helpful tool. you should never use it to just do your work for you, of course. but taking the time to play around with sentences can help you check your work, see what changes words, and more. just take what you learn with a grain of salt, as any translator is going to be poor quality. check out the website of countries with your language as their official language. learning swedish? the official website of sweden has resources for swedish learners.

use this forum, but use your brain. there are many threads available on gaia international that are intended for speakers and learners of a wide variety of languages. but this is a slow forum, even for the popular language threads. make sure to look several pages back, or even use the search function! there is a thread called "international database" which is updated with many of the popular threads for each country (and usually, language). but don't assume that just because a language or country isn't on the list means it doesn't exist. there are several regular threads that aren't on it, so use your eyes. if there is already a thread for your language, think twice before starting a new one. not only is this rude and bad for the forum, it's not a good idea for yourself. you will be splitting the available amount of relevant people to talk to. some may stick to the existing thread, some may only know about yours and post there. by using an existing thread, you're bumping an established thread with established users who are more likely to stick around and help you--as opposed to the ones who may float by, say hi, and disappear forever.

other tips:

don't be scared, just talk. but don't use translators, they suck. in microsoft word and open office, you can change the language and check your grammar. this only works for some languages. madame de sousa
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there are a number of resources online that can usually help you out. while it's impossible for any site to have services for every single language in the world, the ones listed here usually have all or most of the major world languages such as french, spanish, and more.

new
thanks to faith is your destiny
learn10
babbel pronunciation training
digital dialects
linguanaut
free language resources

learn
foreign service institute
livemocha
101 languages
your local library
bbc languages
lre for schools
mango languages
unilang
wikiversity
hello-world
itunes podcasts


reinforce
smart fm
byki
foreign language flashcards
vocab fish
quizlet
flash card database

etc
fluent in three months
conjugator reverso
verbix verb conjugation
forvo pronunciation help
type in special characters

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peach color
german
contributed by madame de sousa
slow german
german grammar
bundesregierung
uni north carolina
aatg
deutsch lernen
aatg
dialektatlas
contributed by faith is your destiny
think german
quia little german
learn german for free
digital dialects german
language guide german
memory game
german and french language games
german listening

french
contributed by madame de sousa
first year french program
culture gouv
radio france
la francaphonie
famous french links
weborama french
french culture
francerama
bon patron

spanish
contributed by madame de sousa
buenos enlaces
literature in latin america
latin world
el castellano
mundo latino
cervantes
epdlp
ihispano
http://www.flamenco-world.com/indice.htm
andes.org
nclr
la salud

contributed by seinaru ite
news in slow spanish
study spanish

mandarin chinese
chinese tools
chinese lessons
zhongwen
joanne chen chinese
hsk resources
common mandarin words
basic chinese grammar
mandarin about.com
unilang chinese grammar
nciku dictionary & study tools
contributed by seinaru ite
target chinese
gonline

japanese
contributed by princessneko
nihongo master
contributed by i know nothing. & kanashii sakura uta
japanese language proficiency test
japanese grammar
tae kim's guide to learning japanese
japanese links
wwwjdic
published study aids by alc
contributed by seinaru ite
rikai-chan
japanese grammar wiki
kensai dialect
vocabulary and kanji
contributed by fayebelly
nihong opera blog
best japanese dictionary
guide to japanese grammar/u]

epochrypha
nihongo resources
meguro language center
japanese test for beginners
japanese flashcards
japanese word processor
offline japanese dictionary
streamed japanese television
nhk kids

irish gaelic
contributed by madame de sousa
daltai
interactive irish lessons
talk irish
gaelg
standing stones
summerlands

icelandic
contributed by not british just gay
icelandic online courses
icelandic online dictionary
a children's book
bragi online courses
excercises
icelandic grammar resource

korean
contributed by kanashii sakura uta
talk to me in korean
kbs world korean lessons
sogang korean
integrated korean
contributed by faith is your destiny
learn koreangenki koreanlearn korean language
korean class 101
contributed by seinaru ite
korean on youtube

dutch
contributed by not british just gay
radio boeken

acht voor taal

video with subtitles
contributed by kaeth
dutch for beginners
taalthuis
learn dutch
dutch grammar

swedish
online swedish

swedish language course
sweden blog

persian
contributed by redfa
redfa


esperanto
free esperanto course

contributed by madame de sousa
lernu


vietnamese
contributed by kanashii sakura uta
learn vietnamese


norwegian
sons of norway

sm'algyax
contributed by o k i e r c h a n
talking dictionary

spanish
contributed by seinaru ite
lingus tv

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here are some suggestions for "outside learning": movies, music, and more.

sharedtalk, to speak to foreigners
last.fm, a free music site
netflix foreign films


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