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3 Digital Ways To Learn A New Language Quickly

Michelle Dale - Friday, October 21, 2011

It’s the weekend, and I have decided to treat myself to a new hobby by ‘officially’ starting my journey towards learning Greek. Why you ask? Well, we are all set to move to Crete, Greece in 6 months with the hopes of building a life there for ourselves and our kids. Whilst our children will only be 3 and 4 when we arrive, I have been assured children under the age of 6 will soak the language up like a sponge in school, so we are going to enrol them directly into the local Greek pre-school and hope our kids will then translate for us, ha ha! It won’t be quite like that.

Other than my fairly good conversational French and Arabic, I have been getting by on phrase books and translators for other languages, but now I really feel compelled and interested to learn Greek. It is going to potentially be a language our children are bilingual in, and not only that, I want to integrate fully into Greek culture and society.

So how am I going about this?

I have decided to take 3 courses of action in the hopes that one of them at least will soak into my brain, which is usually entirely consumed with anything virtual assistant related, or my kids!


The perfect way to brush up on another language is by using a tablet or mobile device. For this I have already started to use my iPad. I searched the App store for Greek language Apps and came up with a great one to start me off with the basics. Aptly named “Learn Greek” it has many essential phrases, categorised, and with a Greek VoiceOver which says the words, so you know you are doing the correct pronunciation (or at least attempting to). This is great for arming yourself with a basic vocabulary.

Rosetta Stone

There are very few people who have not heard of Rosetta Stone. It’s one of the top “learn it yourself” language systems available. They have 2 versions from what I can see, an offline system for your desktop or an online login area which you can periodically purchase access to. I have never learnt a language using this system before, and I haven’t started this one yet, so I’ll let you know how it goes.

Live Mocha

Live Mocha is probably the most forward thinking way of learning online, allowing you to converse with real native speakers, which in my opinion is the best way to learn a language if you intend to “live in it”. From the testimonials a lot of people rate this higher than Rosetta stone, and I am curious to see if this is the case, apparently there is an intuitive ‘drag and drop’ interface that allows you to build sentences! Signing up is free, so what’s to lose.

So this is how I’ll (with any luck) be learning Greek, I think this is about the best combination I have found for self-learning a language digitally, I have 6 months to get a ‘very’ basic handle on it, given the limited time I have free to devote to my new pet project, while still trying to get by on my Italiano here in Ascoli, wish me luck! I hope whatever you are doing this weekend, you have a good one!

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Hi I'm Michelle, an entrepreneur specialising in virtual assistance, a digital and real world nomad, and a down-to-earth mother of three.

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