37 episodes

Are you learning a foreign language (or want to)? Get the best and most unique advice and tips from Donovan Nagel, author of the well-known blog 'The Mezzofanti Guild - Language Learning Made Simple'. Also check out Talk In Arabic, a sister project.

Language Learning Made Simple - The MezzoGuild Podcast The Mezzofanti Guild

    • Education
    • 4.0 • 23 Ratings

Are you learning a foreign language (or want to)? Get the best and most unique advice and tips from Donovan Nagel, author of the well-known blog 'The Mezzofanti Guild - Language Learning Made Simple'. Also check out Talk In Arabic, a sister project.

    9 Actionable Steps For Better Language Learning

    9 Actionable Steps For Better Language Learning

    Read more here: https://www.mezzoguild.com/better-language-learning/
    In this episode, I share 9 actionable steps you can take right now that will guarantee you better language learning.
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    For inexpensive language tutors, teachers and conversation partners, I use italki: https://www.mezzoguild.com/italki (sign up here and get a free lesson)
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    Subscribe to this podcast on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/language-learning-made-simple-the-mezzoguild-podcast/id1156281647?mt=2
    And Stitcher: http://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-mezzofanti-guild/language-learning-made-simple

    • 12 min
    How To Stay Relevant As A Language Learning Blogger In 2019

    How To Stay Relevant As A Language Learning Blogger In 2019

    Read more: https://www.mezzoguild.com/language-blogging/
    In this episode, I talk about language learning blogging, how it's all changing and how to stay relevant in 2019.
    This is a follow-up to my guide: https://www.mezzoguild.com/how-to-start-a-language-blog/
    ---
    For inexpensive tutors, teachers and conversation partners, I use italki: http://www.mezzoguild.com/italki (sign up here and get a free lesson)
     

    • 25 min
    Egyptian Arabic: Easy Stories With English Translations Now Available

    Egyptian Arabic: Easy Stories With English Translations Now Available

    Order it here: https://amzn.to/2FnjwkE
    Read more: https://www.mezzoguild.com/egyptian-arabic-easy-stories/
    The first paperback edition of our new series called Egyptian Arabic: Easy Stories With English Translations is up now on Amazon.
    It consists of 12 mini stories in colloquial Egyptian that incrementally rise in length and difficulty.
    Here’s what you’ll find in the book:
    * 12 mini stories on various focus topics, full of high-frequency vocabulary and expressions pertaining to those topics.
    * Stories that incrementally rise in length and difficulty.
    * Each story has a comprehension exercise section at the end of the chapter.
    * Key vocabulary lists for each story (most of the main vocab used throughout the story).
    * Full English translations in the back of the book (away from the Arabic so you’re not tempted by it).
    * Large, clear font and moderate use of tashkeel (vowel markings) to improve readability for lower-level learners.
    * All dialogues are bolded so they’re easy to distinguish.
    * Lined, note-taking sections.
    I really need to emphasize that this book is NOT for absolute beginners. If you’ve never studied Arabic before then I’d advise coming back to this later on.
    Since it’s a first edition and a totally new venture for us, I’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback on the book.

    • 5 min
    How To Learn Languages Like A Child

    How To Learn Languages Like A Child

     
    Read more here: https://www.mezzoguild.com/learn-language-like-a-child/
    In this episode, I talk about my son and his language development, and how as adults we can learn in much the same way.
    We have advantages as adults in many ways but the idea that we can never learn the way children do is false.
    ---
    For inexpensive tutors, teachers and conversation partners, I use italki: http://www.mezzoguild.com/italki (sign up here and get a free lesson)
     

    • 10 min
    How Do (Can) We Maintain Multiple Cultural Identities?

    How Do (Can) We Maintain Multiple Cultural Identities?

    Read more here: https://www.mezzoguild.com/cultural-identity
    In this episode, I reflect on the personal challenge and pain I've experienced assimilating into various cultures and then having to leave.
    Language maintenance is easy - cultural identity maintenance is the real challenge.
    Why are assimilators the best language learners?
    How do we perpetuate our assimilation into foreign cultures long after we've left and is it even possible?
    ---
    For inexpensive tutors, teachers and conversation partners, I use italki: http://www.mezzoguild.com/italki (sign up here and get a free lesson)

    • 6 min
    The Simple Difference Between Language Fluency And Proficiency

    The Simple Difference Between Language Fluency And Proficiency

    Read my update here: https://www.mezzoguild.com/fluency-proficiency/
    In this episode, I reflect on the difference between language fluency and proficiency.
    ---
    For inexpensive tutors, teachers and conversation partners, I use italki: https://www.mezzoguild.com/italki (sign up here and get a free lesson).

    • 5 min

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5
23 Ratings

23 Ratings

gefsgirl ,

He’s Right, But...

I agree. He’s completely correct about how we learn our first language and how to become fluent in a language. You can take years of language classes in an American school, but still fail to be able to hold a conversation. On the other hand, some of us don’t learn the same way he does. The approach that Donovan teaches is correct for learning fluency, and it works very well for his learning style, which may be the most common learning style. However, some of us actually LOVE grammar! Some of us love to analyze languages and put all the puzzle pieces together like a code. The way he suggests learning is natural, but it is the worst way for me to learn. I know there are others out there like me. I found this podcast by searching for Koine Greek. Most people want to learn Koine in order to better understand a written text, namely the New Testament of the Bible. No one speaks Koine Greek today, so all of his points about speaking a language don’t apply to learning Koine.
Regardless of my issues with what Donovan teaches, I think he has really gotten to the heart of the problem with language learning today, and I will definitely use what I’m learning from him in my work of helping people improve their English speaking! I’m glad I came across his podcast!

orangepaisley ,

He is really wrong about Esperanto

...and quite snobbish about it. All of his criticisms are more true of multilingual purists than Esperantists. It is NOT a political movement.

sol_m ,

Great advice

I also have been trying to get back into learning Spanish again, since I got stuck in the Intermediate level and gave up many years ago. As an ESL teacher I have felt embarrassed about this, I know my Spanish speaking students judge me on it, too. So I decided to pick up Spanish again. The language learning world has changed a lot , and there are more podcasts and YouTube channels out there now than before. I gave up. Then I found this podcast. It has been so helpful so far. His advice is timeless. I also checked out his reviews on language programs and apps, and his critique on Michel Tomas was honest and true, I used the Michel Tomas program and I still can’t speak Spanish. I am now planning on using what I have learned here and apply it with my ESL class now. I had become Grammar focused. Now I realized these students need talking time not Grammar. After listening to the advice on here, I now will use my time w my students constructively and have them speak in English rather than study English. My students will probably have more fun and not dread the Grammar lessons that come w every ESL class. Love this podcasts.

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