We’ve already discussed apps and podcasts which can be used to support your language learning journey, but how about websites for learning new words?
As you’d expect, there are a number of websites which claim to be able to help you to advance as a beginner or intermediate Hindi speaker, but how do you know which one(s) to choose?
Remember that not everyone learns in the same way, so some websites or learning materials just might not be your cup of tea which is absolutely fine – there are numerous other options for you. Even if a polyglot friend swears by it, it may not work for you, simple as that.
It is also important to note that you should not trust everything you read on the Internet, so it may (hopefully) come to your attention that one or two websites you come across are littered with mistakes and errors – not the best way to start learning a new, unfamiliar Indian language!
Careful, as learning from illegitimate sources can leave you feeling red in the face! Photo on Visualhunt
In general, look to only rely on websites hosted by official sources like renowned companies or language schools, or you can look for recommendations from others who have already learned to speak Hindi using online language learning.
One of the best things about the Internet is that it can take you anywhere. All you have to do is search ‘India’ in your search box to be faced with hundreds of images of the country and feel like you are abroad.
Similarly, the Internet can lead you almost anywhere when it comes to your queries. If you search for Hindi lessons online, you will find no end of listings of websites and courses offering to help you master the language!
But with so much choice comes the need to pick and choose the best suggestions for you. You will no doubt come across language learning apps and sites such as DuoLingo, Rosetta Stone, Babbel, Memrise and Rocket Languages, but here we are going to focus on more word-heavy websites, blogs and online lessons that can be used for learning a language (whether designed to or not!) and how to communicate with Indians in their native language (Hindi is the most widely spoken language in India, hence why it is known as the language of India).
In an ever more technological and globalized world, knowing a second language is a very important skill.
Professionally, it can even be a deciding factor when the panel is choosing who to offer a new job to. So, if you can do so for free, why would you even hesitate?
One of your online options is blogs, including international blogs written by native speakers or bilingual individuals. By following these foreign sites, you will read text for free online written in your target language by people of your age.
This means that you will not only learn about formal speech, you will also pick up new colloquial expressions like slang, all the while keeping up to date on what is happening in the country where this language is spoken. In the case of Hindi learners, you will get a chance to read texts in the context of northern India. Now that’s value for money – free language learning!
Social networks are another fantastic way of connecting with the millions of people who speak Hindi and believe it or not some of them will be able to help you with your online language learning such as your Hindi vocabulary, grammar, verbs or conversational skills!
If you want to learn German, for example, follow pages written in German. Similarly, if you want to learn Italian, like pages or people’s profiles that are aimed at an Italian audience and see how quickly you pick up some new words and phrases. It is no different when you want to learn Russian or Hindi.
Using social media is a clever way to accelerate your language study as you often click on to your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram accounts without even thinking about it when you have a moment spare, so this could help you to subconsciously interact with your new language at a number of points during the day.
Social networks are a great means for learning from others. Photo credit: ccPixs.com on Visualhunt
Keeping track of the news is something most of us do every day, but why not stay ahead of the news in India too by reading Hindi news sites and improve your comprehension at the same time?
Once again, you will get a good feel for the language, thus helping you to learn a foreign language like Hindi, but you’ll also get to know what is happening in society. What’s more, news articles are normally quite simple and informative, so the language shouldn’t be too hard to grasp for newcomers to the multilingual network.
While you won’t necessarily learn how to say ‘my name is…’, or ‘what is the time please?’, you will learn some valuable lessons like what the Hindi letters look like, verb conjugation (i.e. the present tense and the past tense among others), spelling and local dialect. Furthermore, this immersion-style learning system is completely flexible when compared to a structured course.
Loecsen is a great, efficient course adapted for learners of Hindi.
The easy to use resource encourages you to start learning Hindi firstly by memorising and repeating words, phrases and practical expressions that you can use in everyday life and that will be particularly useful when travelling in India.
Like so many others, it believes that getting accustomed to speaking in Hindi out loud is the best practice for those serious about becoming proficient in the language. Even just repeating your Hindi numbers or the Hindi alphabet counts as work pronunciation when it comes to your linguistics lessons!
The essential topics that this course covers are:
-Looking for someone
-In case of trouble
Verbal Planet is a website and flexible learning tool which helps new starters to grasp the Hindi language.
Like many online resources, this website allows you to learn around your own schedule, offering you a variety of lessons to pick and choose from to fit your lifestyle. No more rushing around to get to class on time!
You don’t have to commit to a whole programme of study all at once either, you can choose to pay for a single class or book an entire course depending on your preference, financial situation, and your goals.
The success of this website is most of all down to its native, experienced Hindi teachers who can offer lively, fun and interesting conversations in their mother tongue language. The interactive lessons make it so that you are never left wondering if a pronunciation or meaning is right!
Finally, the language learning tool allows you to customise your learning experience by creating tailor-made lessons to match your goals and individual priorities.
It’s truly amazing to think that 490 million people on this planet speak Hindi as a first or second language. Photo on Visual Hunt
Finally, we have discovered an online learning resource that is free for all, thanks to the people at Live Lingua (a language school), who believe that everybody should be able to learn another language no matter their age, financial situation, or background.
As such, they have made the Free US Peace Corps Hindi resources available for you to use and to take away some great language lessons from.
With this amazing resource, you can read Hindi ebooks online, listen to Hindi audiobooks and practice your Hindi pronunciation with its online recorder. What’s more, you don’t need to have an Internet connection to take advantage of all this has to offer. You can download the files to your PC or device to use whenever you want. Therefore, this doubles up as an online/offline resource!
Hindi Language Lessons
As part of the free instruction package offered by this charitable language school, is a course called Hindi Language Lessons.
The featured guide is “designed for Hindi language training of Peace Corps workers in agriculture in India and reflects daily communication needs in that context.
It consists of notes on Hindi phonology and pronunciation and a series of lessons, common phrases, and grammatical constructions.
The 41 lessons are presented in four sections, each containing a group of lessons, a list of sentences and phrases, dialogues and dialogue – related exercises, and grammar notes. The last section also includes a series of seven conversational situations for role-playing, notes on working with a tutor, a verb chart, and 10 lessons on writing Hindi script.”