Many people find journaling to be a soothing activity, or a great way to document their lives and to record memories. But what if instead of writing a journal in your native tongue, you use it as a chance to work on your foreign language skills? Reading and writing in a foreign language as frequently as possible is a great way to improve your skills. Journaling in a foreign language can not only be fun and challenging, but also an opportunity to continue to develop your knowledge base in your second language.
1. You can improve your understanding of grammar
When first learning a new language, your lessons may be heavily focused on mastering simple sentence structure (including basic grammatical rules) and vocabulary. Journaling, whether you are writing about your daily activities or delving into your emotions, often requires more complex sentencing. Keeping a journal in a foreign language can thus provide you with a chance to stretch your grammatical abilities.
2. You can learn new vocabulary words
The vocabulary words that you learn during your lessons may be helpful for basic conversations, but you will likely find when journaling that you need more words than those you have learned in class. Each time you look up a new word to include in a journal entry, you are expanding your vocabulary beyond your previous capabilities. Using the word in context will also help you better understand and remember it.
3. You can relate your second language to your day-to-day life
You may find that journaling in a foreign language makes the language seem much more relevant to your life. Journaling is a great way to truly understand a language, as well as how it relates to your life.
4. You can practice more frequently
For many people, journaling is a daily activity—it’s a way to start the day or to debrief from the day’s activities. If you make journaling in a foreign language a daily activity, even if you just write a few sentences each day, it will give you a chance to practice your language skills. Frequent practice is the best way to improve your abilities.
5. You can boost your second-language confidence
This daily practice, combined with your expanded vocabulary and strengthened grammar skills, is a great way to boost your confidence in using a foreign language. It’s also a great way to document your improvement with the language. You’ll be able to look back at old entries to see where you started and how far you’ve come with your language skills.
Journaling in a foreign language is one of the best ways to improve your language skills. Even if you don’t make it a daily practice, journal as much as you can to improve your grammar and vocabulary, and to boost your confidence.
Catherine Martin is a contributing writer for UniversityTutor.com, the world’s largest global marketplace for finding independent tutors.