Lindsaydoeslanguages is blogging about her World Cup Language Challenge and we’re reposting here to share with the entire italki Community. This blog post originally was posted on Lindsaydoeslanguages.com website.

Week 1

So far, so good! I’m four lessons into my italki World Cup Language Challenge learning Portuguese and it’s going pretty darn well.

I’ve had three lessons with Brazilian Portuguese speakers and one with a European Portuguese speaker and I’m really glad I’ve opted for the mix. Learning the two variations parallel is surprisingly fun and kind of helpful. Somehow they’re managing to stay separate in my brain. For now, anyway!

This Week’s Goal

This week, I set myself the task of reading a chapter of the book Caro Bruce Springsteen on camera. Why? That’s a good question! This may seem completely random but the reason is that this book cost just 50 cents from a book stall in Portugal last summer – proof that language learning doesn’t have to cost the earth.

I’m also reading because in these early stages I want to focus on pronunciation to stop me from making potential mistakes later on. If I’m reading something out loud, then all of my attention is on what’s on the page. I don’t have to think about what I’m going to say at the same time, which takes a lot of brain power out of pronunciation practise. I also really hate those pronunciation sections at the start of language books when they teach you completely random words just because they have a letter combination or unusual vowel sound. I learn by doing, so this is a way I can learn by doing: reading!

Here’s this week’s (sun-tinted!) video of me reading a short chapter from the book. Enjoy!

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Continuing from our first post of Public Video Pledges, we’ve received more from dedicated Challengers all over the world who have bravely posted their Public Video Pledge!

We want to applaud those all our Challengers who were brave enough to publicly promising to finish the Challenge, but don’t forget that there’s still time for you to make your Public Video Pledge and earn 50ITC as a bonus! (Click here for more details)

We also hope that these pledges will serve as some inspiration for you to learn a new language now!

Murillo Costa  from Brazil
This is a great Public Pledge from Murillo, who is also one of our Community Tutor. Murillo teaches Portuguese and he is learning French and Russian for the World Cup Language Challenge. He is committing 1 lesson of French and 2 lessons of Russian a week to finish the Challenge. Cheer him on by Notebook post here.

Surprisingly, Murillo does not want Brazil to win the World Cup, but he supports Spain!


Arthur  from Brazil
Arthur is a beginner and he is taking the challenge to improve his Italian skills. He is committing to taking 2 to 3 lessons a week to complete the challenge. Show that you care by commenting on his Notebook entry.

Arthur hopes Germany win the World Cup.


Tosha  from the United States
Tosha is learning Spanish for our World Cup Language Challenge and she is also a Community Tutor who teaches English on italki. Her Spanish speaking skills are actually quite good already as you can see and hear from this video below, but she really wants to take it to the next level since she will be spending some time in Mexico. Tosha is committing 2 to 3 English lessons a week to finish the Challenge. Please show your support by leaving some nice comments on her Notebook entry.

Tosha wants Brazil to win the trophy! (more…)

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We’re Doing it!  So Should You!

If you’re taking the Langauge Challenge and really want to succeed, we’re giving away 50ITC if you make a Public Video Pledge!  Why would you ever want to do this? (Click here for more details)  Please take some time to motivate and encourage our Public Video Pledge Challengers by commenting on their Notebook entrees!

Lindsaydoeslanguages from England
Lindsay is a veteran italki Challenge winner.  She’s a Polyglot and well known blogger and vlogger on her popular Language Learning website Lindsaydoeslanguages.com.  She’s going to be blogging about her experiences tackling Portuguese throughout the Challenge.  Send her some words of encouragement on her Notebook entry!

Lindsay also thinks that England will win the World Cup!


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As the World Cup Language Challenge start date slowly approaches, one of the most common questions we receive is, “How do I prepare for a Language Challenge?” Well, you can simply dive right in and start taking lessons or you can plan each week and maximize your learning. Our guest blogger and World Cup Challenger Lindsaydoeslanguages shares with us her weekly Language Challenge goals! This post originally appears on Lindsaydoeslanguages.



With the italki World Cup Language Challenge creeping ever closer, now seems like the perfect time to give you a quick update before it all kicks off. (I’m just gonna keep the football puns coming…)

Have I started?

Nope! The italki World Cup Language Challenge begins on June 1st, so there’s still time to sign up!

What I have done though is booked all 25 lessons in advance because I know that for me, having the lessons booked now will take away the pressure of booking last minute.

I have also set myself 8 weekly goals. (Told you, there’s plenty more where that came from…)

My 8 World Cup (Language Challenge) Goals!

Week 1 - To read a short chapter of “Caro Bruce Springsteen” out loud on video.

This may sound completely random but this is to prove that language learning doesn’t have to be expensive. I picked up this book from a book stall in Portugal last year for just 50 cents!

Week 2 - To read a random news article from the internet out loud on video.

This may sound like a lot of reading, but in the early stages, I really want to work on improving my pronunciation and making it sound more Portuguese and less Spanish. Personally, I find reading really helps with this.

Week 3 - To learn the entire lyrics to Ai Se Eu Te Pego

So this is, like, the greatest song ever.

And it’s Portuguese. It just seems rather fitting! (more…)

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This is a guest blog post from our friends at Lingua.ly.  We love this app as it turns your mobile phone into a language learning experience. Download the Lingua.ly Android App.  Reposted with permission.  Here is the original blog link.

5 Things to Keep in Mind When Listening in a Second or Foreign Language




Listening is harder than reading– a sentiment shared by language learners around the world. In fact, one of the greatest fears of the language student is using a phrase correctly and being unable to handle the onslaught of native speaker speech received as a response. So, why is it that spoken language seems so difficult to process in comparison to the written word and what can a learner do to improve comprehension? Read on to find out!

1. Listening happens in real-time
Unlike with reading, listening forces you to process language as it is delivered. That means you don’t have an opportunity to pause the activity to look up a word in the dictionary. But it’s important not to panic, as this conscious monitoring of the listening process can cause you to miss the rest of what is being said as well. Learn to relax your brain and keep your mind open until the listening text comes to a natural pause.

2. Listening doesn’t mean you hear every word
Listening is something we do naturally and many people don’t realise that even in our native tongues we don’t necessarily register every word someone says. Instead we pick up on keywords which give us the information we need to make inferences about who, when, where and most importantly what we are listening to. So listen for the big picture words and let your brain fill in the rest. (more…)

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