Young retirees, get your English up to speed

Are you in your sixties or recently retired and are you tempted to learn English again? Whether you’re traveling, on vacation or talking to your American daughter-in-law or Irish son-in-law, you too want to be able to talk without the need for intermediaries.

The basics are there. You studied English during your studies and used it – or not – professionally. This time it’s done, you’ve decided to become “fluent” as the English say and you want to get back to it.

Tips and tricks, let’s see together how to make your level take off.

Becoming bilingual is possible at any age

We often hear that as we age, learning a new language becomes complicated and that memorization may be lacking. And yet our brain is elastic and learns at any age. Learning is a good way to prevent brain decline and maintain better overall health. In short, we all need it :).

In elderly people who remain in an active professional, social and emotional life, the memory faculties remain identical to those of younger people. The faculty of memory only wears out if we don’t use it.

Jean-Yves & Marc Tadié, 1999, p. 293, The meaning of memory

By setting up a program that suits your availability, using the right resources and setting goals, you can progress in English and reach a more than honorable level.

Where to start?

Review the basics with the apps

Apps are THE solution to get back into the swing of things. Most are very user-friendly and allow you to track your progress. Some of them are free and others are not. Linguifamily recommends Duolingo (free) and MosaLingua (paid). Devote a few minutes a day to it, it is enough to see good first results.

Sharpen your ears with podcasts

Podcasts are the latest trend in memory training. They are free (for the most part), accessible, practical and help you develop your listening skills. There is something for all levels with varying lengths of listening time (between 3 and 30 minutes per episode). Linguifamily recommends “Learn English from the British Council” and “6 Minute English from the BBC” to improve your English. But there are others. It is up to you to choose them according to your level and the subjects you like.

Linguifamily tip : listening to podcasts or watching series in English at least twice a week will allow you to practice and familiarize yourself with the language.

Chat with a language teacher

Whether online or face-to-face, language courses are proven learning methods. For individuals or groups, there is something for every budget and for every level. Linguifamily is very much in favor of classes with a live teacher. Let’s not forget that these are modern language courses !

Linguifamily’s advice : ask the twinning association of your city. She probably offers language courses or a language café. It is often inexpensive and very user-friendly.

Other resources for progress

  • Foreign blogs are a simple and fun way to learn about the language and culture of a country. Passionate about baking, subscribe to a cooking blog in Spanish! Amateur photographer, find a travel blog in English!
  • The print media can also help you. Opt for magazines aimed at teenagers like“I love English Word” or“Vocable Espagnol“. The articles are shorter and more airy to make reading easier and progress effortlessly.

Going on a language immersion trip

Total immersion: this is THE solution to progress in record time. Language stays are not just for high school or university students. Linguifamily host families are there to offer stays adapted to all ages and all levels. They welcome solo travelers as well as couples, or even for some groups of friends.

Retired people on an English course

Josiane, who went on a language trip with Linguifamily this year, testifies to this fact  :

More than a week spent at Paul and Rebecca’s house, I met real friends. Both are generous in the transmission of their knowledge as well as in their way of thinking. I recommend you to spend some time with them they are very good teachers. I can speak English, before it was impossible for me. Thanks to both of them.

Josiane 08/06/2021

And also, Nicole, who went to Susan and Peter’ s house near Angoulême for a language stay:

We had a great week at Susan and Peter’s. Susan is an excellent cook, Peter has a great sense of humor. Both are very dynamic, very athletic, open and attentive to the needs of each individual. The ideal place for the nature, the calm, the flowers, the small birds, the conviviality and the ‘british’ humor of Susan and Peter.

Nicole 25/05/2021

It’s up to you now

The question to ask yourself now is, “What is my learning program going to be and my timeline to stick to it?” Once you get the hang of it, learning will become as much a part of your routine as sports or cooking.

Start improving your English, your Spanish or Italian today and take your level to the next level with Linguifamily!

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