Organizing yourself on a daily basis to learn Danish requires dedication, time and planning. This is essential to achieve your own goals. Improving is linked to many factors, one of them being that you have a proper routine.
Personally, I can be very good at procrastinating and always finding something else to do on my phone or computer. But that does not help me further in the process of learning Danish, this is why, every day, I stick to a specific routine. Or at least I try to!
Here is my routine to improve in Danish and stay focused. I am currently taking day classes and have a part time job on the side, which allows me to spend enough time at home to study. This routine can also be applied if you are attending evening classes, but you will (most likely) be forced to reduce the number of hours spent on each task every day.
My daily To-Do list
- Reading Newspapers
- Daily news on Mobile App
Top Daily routine to learn Danish
We get homework after every class, which can easily take up to one or two hours at home, to complete. In the early modules 1 and 2, we had a limited amount of written homework. But as I progressed in the modules, I have been given a lot more essays to write on more complex topics. Homework are always the first task on my to-do list.
Needless to say, that Danish grammar will be a challenge when you learn the language. Improving your skills require that you spend time on grammar. Take the time to analyze your written homework and see where you need to improve. Have a look here to some useful resources to improve your Danish grammar.
Every day, I aim to learn new words. Those are words that I have seen during the class, read on a newspaper, a book or heard on TV or a song. Some days, I managed to learn up to 100 new words, others just 10 words.
The amount of words doesn’t matter to me, what matters is that I get to rehearse them every day until I know them by heart. Some days, I only rehearse words that I have already learnt, therefore will not focus on new words. I found out that the best method for me is to learn new vocabulary, by heart. It can be quite frustrating sometimes, but so rewarding when you hear them in a conversation and know what they mean.
Some of my fellow students use flashcards to rehearse vocabulary. I only heard positive feedback about flashcards, but never used it personally (so will not review it for now).
I actually have a basic Google Excel document, where I save all the new vocabulary I learn every day. This means I have it with me on the go and only need an internet connection to overview my Danish practice list.
From Monday to Friday, I read BT which is a free newspaper. This adds new vocabulary to my list and keep me in the loop about Danish news.
Daily news on Mobile App
I downloaded the DR Nyheder app on my phone. I check the news in Danish at least twice a day, pick up an article that looks interesting and take the time to read it. This has really improved my reading and vocabulary over the past months.
You can download the DR app here: iOS or Android
These are the 5 to-do tasks I aim at completing every day. Thankfully, I have managed to stick to them as much as possible. I am very pleased and proud to finally see results, my Danish is improving, happy days!
If you have more time on your hands, here are some extra daily tasks that you can add. I aim at doing one of them every day, on top of my 5 to-do tasks.
Read a Book
I read between one to two Danish books a week. I get one from school and one from the public library, which gives me enough material to read at home. If you find the time to read books, this will substantially improve your vocabulary and Danish level. Make sure to borrow books that you will enjoy reading.
I want my reading exercise to be a fun and an enjoyable experience, therefore I focus on selecting books that I really want to read.
Have fun and read Danish!
On a weekly basis, I aim to listen, read and study one song. This is also a fun exercise and part of the learning process. Read more info about this tasks on a previous post I wrote.
Preparing your next class
I like to read the upcoming pages of my study book and already learn the vocabulary (ahead of the next class). It really helps me to have prepared it at home and already read it.
This means that when the others are reading an article for the first time, this is my second time reading it.
It becomes a repetition and helps me assimilate the content, grammar and new vocabulary faster.
By doing so, I am able to pay full attention to the class and not feeling lost, but also practice the vocabulary. I don’t do this task all the time, but I try to do it at least twice a week. This has seriously helped me to improve and stay on top.
What about you? What are your daily tasks?
How much time to you spend at home studying?
Feel free to share your thoughts and best practices on the comment section below, Facebook or @learndanishblog!