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The ASL alphabet and numbers
Find a Career in Learning Sign Language
More organizations, institutes and video media outlets are recognizing that the deaf demographic needs to be included, and due to this, the need for professional signers is continually increasing. Whether you already know sign language or are intending to learn, you will find that this skill makes you a strengthened applicant and a valuable employee for a variety of positions.

If you’re comfortable with your current profession but are still interested in advancement opportunities that could come with sign language, keep in mind that those who are able to sign also find special niches within their existing profession. For example, if you are in nursing and have taken the time to learn sign language, guess who will be called on to help communicate with any hearing impaired persons in your workplace? That’s right, you will. This increases your value to the company, and can lead to being chosen for special assignments, etc. When looking for a job, an additional language is also beneficial to your résumé and makes you a more desirable hire. Sign language especially is an often underrepresented skill, so your expertise will surely make you stand out amongst other applicants. Talk to your current boss about how you sign language could be valuable in your workplace, and be sure to highlight this skill on your résumé if applying for a new position.

There are also opportunities to work as an interpreter working with seminar hosts, convention speakers, event planners, the government, and diplomatic services. These professions require communication with every sector of the public, and taking the time to learn sign language can give you a great career opportunity.

If you already know sign language, then you won’t have to worry about the learning process, but if you’re new to the skill and are looking for ways to learn before you think about a career, there are plenty of opportunities out there. The number of people making the effort to learn sign language is increasing every year, and you could be one of them. Learning sign language is easier than learning a second spoken language in many ways as much of the sentence structure and grammar is already familiar to you. Many find that with a good effort, they are able to proficiently learn sign language with the right amount of dedication.

If you think you are ready to learn sign language, either to create a new career path, or to build your resume, there are a few ways you can go about it. You can sign up for lessons at a college or institute or purchase a study course to work on at home; many of these courses are well developed and effective. You can also take advantage of your local library to borrow books, DVDs, and videos to help you in your pursuit. If you prefer face-to-face learning methods, consider hiring a tutor or connecting with a language exchange partner to help you get the most out of your learning. You can check out tutors in your local classifieds, Craigslist, or tutor-specific sites like WyzAnt, and you can connect with a language exchange partner at LRNGO.

For free individual practice, you can check out sites like LifePrint or HandSpeak, which both offer some great tutorials and other resources (including an ASL dictionary) that will help you in your learning and comprehension.

Photo Credit: Anathea Utley

lrngo users in over 190 countries

The ancient temple of Sree Sharada in Pakistan
Learning Urdu: A How-To
As a lingua franca (bridge language) of Pakistan, it’s no wonder that learning Urdu has struck your fancy. Learning any second language is a challenge, but it is a challenge that you can master with the right kind of foundation. You probably already know that if you are dedicated to the learning process and are willing to put in some honest effort, Urdu will successfully become a part of your language skills.

Get Guidance
It is important to have some sort of structural support as you learn a language like Urdu to keep you on the right track and ensure that you are covering all the ground necessary to really learn the language. You have a variety of options when it comes to how to get that guidance, so decide which is right for you.

Finding a class that teaches Urdu near you may be unlikely, but check out local colleges and language centers in case their offerings surprise you. You also have the ability to enroll in online Urdu courses. Be sure that when doing this you read user reviews, and utilize any free trials so that you get the best Urdu education for your dollar.

You can also hire a tutor to teach you. This is a great option as languages are best taught through another person who already has the working knowledge and expertise that you wish to acquire. Working one-on-one with someone helps them understand your learning style and gives you the opportunity to have highly personalized lessons that are designed to work specifically for you. Tutors are also valuable in that they can give you insight on the culture surrounding the language, any slang or nontraditional usages, and be there to answer questions. They also make excellent conversation partners and can even go over your written work to make your abilities more fluid and natural. Look for tutors in classifieds, Craigslist, or other tutoring sites like here on LRNGO, or WyzAnt.

If you like the idea of a tutor but don’t like the cost, then look into becoming involved with language exchanges. Essentially, language exchange is a mutual tutoring, like “you teach me English and I’ll teach you Urdu”. No cost besides your time, and all the benefits of a tutor. As you know, LRNGO offers a free platform for learning exchange, so you can find a partner near you or online to work with via video chat.

Practice Outside of Lessons
This is an essential part of your study. The guidance of an instructor is important, but if you don’t practice on your own, you won’t grow in your language skills. Check out sites like Urdu101, My Languages, and BBC Urdu for resources and links that will help you practice outside of class. Listening to radio shows and reading news in Urdu will help increase your ability to use the language in everyday life.

It’s also important to be sure you practice frequently and consistently. Make a schedule with the guidance of your instructor and ask them for advice on how to incorporate Urdu into your daily life for maximum practice.

The key to Urdu is to stay dedicated and determined and to practice, practice, practice. I know it’s cliché, but you can achieve your goal with substantial effort. The hardest part is just to get started and make the decision to start learning!

Photo Credit: Irfan Ahmed

lrngo users in over 190 countries

Hebrew writing in the Torah
Know Hebrew? Find Jobs as a Language Tutor
Did you know that the United States has the second highest population of Hebrew speakers (after Israel, of course)?

With the growing demand for language teachers and tutors, a good Hebrew teacher or tutor has more opportunities to teach Hebrew than ever. Despite Hebrew not being one of the more in demand languages of study, knowing Hebrew opens you up to teaching or tutoring those interested in learning the language. You have the ability to put your skills to use, so why hesitate? All it takes is a little preparation, a good knowledge of the language, and determination to keep looking until you find the Hebrew teaching or tutoring job that works well for you.

Online tutoring sites such as WyzAnt are an excellent place for tutors to start posting their qualifications and availability. These sites are always looking for new talented and skilled tutors to connect with their ready and waiting students. All you have to do is apply and pass their background checks and certification requirements and you could be accepted as a member of one of these sites to teach Hebrew.

If you prefer a face-to-face method of tutoring, you could use online classifieds to post your information for interested learners to access, or check out student listings to see if they are looking for you. These sites generally focus on individual tutoring as opposed to larger, group settings, which can be a great place to start if you don’t have much teaching experience. Check out Craigslist or LRNGO to start out with.

If you feel that you have enough experience and qualifications, you may be interested in looking at schools in your area for open positions as a Hebrew teacher or tutor. Connecting with schools is always beneficial as they can refer you to parents and students who are looking for a Hebrew tutor, whether or not they have an in-school position available for you.

If you know classical Hebrew, look into jobs at local Jewish or Christian schools, synagogues, and churches. The deep roots the language has on both of these beliefs makes it a popular language to study in these spheres.

The key to obtaining a Hebrew tutoring or teaching job is to have confidence in your working Hebrew skills and your ability to impart this knowledge on others. In addition to that, it is important to put yourself out there. Contact as many listing sites and schools as you can and be sure to be friendly and put your best foot forward as you connect with potential students. Have patience and determination—the jobs are out there, you just have to find them.

Photo Credit: Yoel Ben-Avraham

lrngo users in over 190 countries

Indonesian soap opera, Cintra Fitri
Learn Indonesian Fast with Top Notch Tutors
A common challenge that many language learners face is figuring out where to start. It can be hard to learn any language, especially a complicated and nuanced language like Indonesian, and that’s why it is recommended to go in with guidance.

Hiring a tutor is an important step in the language learning process, reason being that textbooks and websites can only teach you so much of a language and answer so many of your questions. The remainder of your learning comes from an experienced speaker who is familiar with both teaching and the language itself. Indonesian language tutors can assist you in reaching your language goals and make progress quickly and effectively.

Needing a tutor and finding one are two very different things, and finding someone who is a good tutor and someone you are comfortable working with is extremely important. Some of the best places to look for language tutors are at specialized sites made for connecting language learners to tutors. There are a variety of sites like this such as WyzAnt and TutorHunt. Indonesian language tutors are located all over the world (you can even get tutored from anywhere through Skype) ready and waiting to help you, and all you have to do is get in contact with them.

Other great places to find Indonesian language tutors are on classified sites and in local newspapers. On sites like Craigslist you can find all sorts of available Indonesian language tutors and teachers, so get their information, and go to meet them in person. You can also post ads for yourself if you can’t find available teachers, and the teachers have the ability to come to you.

Of course, LRNGO is a platform where you can find tutors to work with you in person or through video chat, as well as offers language exchange, so you can teach someone a skill you know in exchange for Indonesian lessons—giving you all the benefits of a tutor without the cost.

Indonesian language tutors who will help you learn the language are a great option not only for their experience with the language, but also because they know the culture and can impart you with knowledge beyond the basic language including everyday subtleties and slang that you may find beneficial if you’re looking to have a working knowledge of how the language is used daily. They can give you history and knowledge behind the traditions, and help you understand more deeply the ins and outs of the language.

When locating a tutor, be sure to do a trial tutoring session before you commit to a long-term session. It is important that tutors and students work well together and can function in that kind of relationship. Make sure that you feel comfortable with how your tutor teaches and that they understand how to tailor their lessons to best fit your skills and struggles. You can also look at reviews from previous students if you’re using an online site as well as pay attention to their previous experience to ensure that your tutor is a good one.

A great tutor can be the key to your learning and helping you figure out just what will work for you. There’s nothing to be gained from putting it off, so go and get yourself one of the best tutors today!

Photo Credit: Prayoga D. Widyanto

lrngo users in over 190 countries

The Osaka Station in Kansai, Japan
Learn Japanese in a Flash
Making a commitment to learn Japanese fluently is the first step in your language learning journey. Before beginning, you should feel confident in that you want to learn the language and that you will learn it, no matter how many difficulties you come up against. Japanese is a challenging language to learn, so going in with the right mindset is important. Don’t let this statement deter you from your dream, because if you are determined, learning Japanese is an attainable goal. That level of determination is the single most important skill for anyone hoping to learn Japanese, so remember to go in with the right attitude.

Japanese is one of the most difficult languages to learn due to the writing and to some extent, the grammar. Written Japanese combines Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji. Hiragana is the phonetic system for Japanese words; Katakana is the phonetic system for foreign words with the exact same sounds as Hiragana, but written completely differently; Kanji is the written system of characters derived from the Chinese language. All three written systems must be learned and none of them can be omitted to properly write in Japanese. Native English Speakers will also likely struggle with the Japanese grammar structure; all sentences place the verb at the end of the sentence.

It’s important to have a native or fluent speaker to guide you through your language learning, so look into hiring a tutor or connecting with a language exchange partner. Of course, you can find opportunities to search for both options at LRNGO. Human guidance is also important, as they will be able to adjust your lessons to your learning level and style, giving you a personalized education. They are also great resources to turn to when questions or difficulties arise, are great conversation practice partners, and give you insight to the culture.

To successfully learn Japanese, especially with fluency, accuracy and a clear accent, you will need to devote serious time each week to practicing. It is not effective to spend a lot of time for a few days or weeks and then quit for a few months, and repeat. You must be consistent with learning any new language. So look at your obligations and find a schedule that will work for you, making sure to devote some time each day to your studies.

You could allot certain days of the week to learn different aspects of Japanese—one day working with your tutor or language exchange partner, one day for YouTube videos, one day for podcasts, one day for online exercises, etc. Or, pick a time of day when your mind is most alert, and studiously work on your language learning every day during that hour without fail and without distraction. However you choose to schedule your learning, the key is to stick to it. Work with your tutor or language exchange partner to help you come up with study and practice material for the week.

Another great resource is Japanese 101, which offers everything from radio, TV, and news links to grammar and pronunciation help.

If you are convinced that you need and/or want to learn Japanese, the more time and effort you put into it, the quicker you will become proficient, so be sure to make your learning a priority.

Photo Credit: Luke Ma

lrngo users in over 190 countries

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