Human beings usually learn to speak at least one language naturally in their first years of life. They learn from their parents, from school, from TV, from the place where they live. Of course, there are people who have the advantage of having parents who speak different languages, thus growing up with two mother languages. Others are born in one place, and then move to another, thus becoming bilingual. There are several ways by which someone can get a head start in the conquest of the world of languages. But what does it take to achieve the level of multilingual superstar? To reach this maximum linguistic enlightenment you must first pass through the following levels:
Level 1: Curious Brainiac
There is something inside your mind that asks you for a new challenge and a new way of seeing the world. You are aware of the existence of other languages, with their own rules and structures and you know that starting to research a language other than your own will give you more knowledge, better job opportunities and connections with people from other cultures. Being unilingual makes you feel incomplete. It’s time to learn a new language!
Learning a second language from scratch, you discover the importance of grammar and spelling rules, both in your mother tongue and in your new language. You start to detect patterns and you find it easier and easier to understand things. You have managed to get out of your comfort zone and now you start obsessing with achieving perfection in writing and speaking. People already look askance at you because you are constantly correcting others. Slow down, egghead! The race is just beginning!
Level 3: Polyglot
You have already learned a couple of foreign languages and find it easier to understand other languages since you can recognize rules that are similar or repeated over and over again, and this way your head work faster when reading or listening in other languages What you found difficult to learn about the first language has become easier with the new ones. Maybe in this instance it is still difficult to jump from one language to the other without resetting your brain and having to concentrate a lot, but you already know the formula to expand your knowledge. All you need is time and practice for the words to come out naturally and effortlessly. You already think and even dream in other languages. It is imminent; you will not stop until you speak more languages than C-3PO.
Level 4: Multilingual Superstar
After several years of constant learning and practice you have managed to have an enviable range of languages under your belt. You can speak several languages in a natural way and almost without having to think, and you can understand languages that you have not yet studied in depth because your mind already identifies the patterns of the general functioning of a language. You have friends from many different countries, and you can’t remember the last time you turned on subtitles on the TV. Good job, genius!
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