Learn Lithuanian: Powerful How-To Guide for All Levels In 2022
Lithuania is a country with some of the most scenic natural wonders in the world. With nearly 40% of all land covered by magnificent forests, it is home to numerous types of beautiful fauna and exquisite flora. To fully immerse yourself in the wonders provided by the country’s beautiful landscapes, learning the Lithuanian language would be considerably rewarding.
When it comes to learning one of the oldest surviving Indo-European languages in history, it is important to understand the language structure first. There are various courses, apps, books, and other resources available to support you in the language learning process.
In this article, we will introduce many of these resources that aim to help make learning Lithuanian enjoyable and give you the practice necessary to read, write, and speak like native speakers.
The official language ‘Lithuanian’ is an ancient one where the publications were banned for decades. However, it has still managed to survive and become one of the oldest languages in the Baltic branch of Indo-European languages in the world.
The Lithuanian language is written using the Latin alphabet. However, very few books managed to survive the test of time and so most of the language was passed down through speech.
To effectively immerse yourself in learning Lithuanian, it is important to understand some of the country’s long history. Lithuania has spent centuries being ruled by other nations, so it is quite a feat that this archaic language managed to survive.
Russian is the second spoken language for those native to the country. A major reason why Russian is the second most spoken is that during the Soviet Occupation between 1940-1990, Russian was mandatory. As a result, many of those in the older generation are fluent in Russian, whilst many in the younger generation are not fluent.
How Difficult Is Lithuanian?
The Lithuanian language is incredibly complex. For many people, this might be due to its morphological structure. A morphological structure is the internal structure of a word, and every language has a unique structure.
The reason that this language can be difficult to grasp is that the majority of European languages have simplified their morphological structures. However, Lithuania has kept its morphological structure similar to how it was hundreds of years ago.
It is recognized as a difficult language to grasp by the Foreign Service Institute and is considered to be related to Russian in terms of complexity. However, it may be easy to grasp the pronunciation of terms, especially in comparison to languages such as English. Everything in this language is typically phonetically spoken and the correct sentence order is usually as follows: subject-verb-object. This helps balance out the difficulty of the morphological structure.
To learn this ancient and beautiful language, you should understand that it will not be an easy task. It will require copious levels of determination and hard work to feel confident enough to speak with native speakers naturally.
How to Understand the Lithuanian Language
Clearly Define Your Goals
There are several reasons why individuals may wish to gain a better grasp of this language. For example, wanting to move to a new country for business purposes or connect with new friends.
Learning a new language has many proven benefits including improving your ability to think more logically. Depending on your reasons for learning, the level of fluency you should reach will vary. Some people will only need to understand and speak conversational Lithuanian, but others will need to read and write the language. In general, your objectives have an undeniable effect on your estimated learning time and the resources you utilize.
Discover Your Learning Style
Before you start your journey, it would be a wise decision to understand your learning style. Some prefer to work in a traditional pen and paper style while others need more active exercises to speak the language efficiently. There are many different resources you can use depending on your preference.
Make Friends or Language Partners
For those who want to learn more effectively, there is the possibility of finding suitable language partners to help hold you accountable and encourage you to continue with your courses. Friends and family in your real life may also be supportive in reminding you to continue studying.
Define How Much Time to Dedicate to Studying
An important point to consider when looking at how you grasp this romantic language is the amount of time you can dedicate to studying. Most people do not have hours upon hours per day to spend on this goal due to other responsibilities.
Even if you have half an hour to spare a day, that is sufficient time to become a good speaker in the long run. It is important to be dedicated and to have a routine where you can maximise your language learning potential. Other people may also find it helpful to create a study plan to hold them accountable for their routine.
Understand That Learning Lithuanian Will Be a Difficult Task
Setbacks are a natural part of the learning process. However, if everyone gave up when experiencing setbacks then nothing would ever be achieved. It is prudent to build your determination and resilience to ensure that you achieve your goal.
Always take a few minutes to look back on how far you have come and how much you have achieved because no matter where you are on your journey, you should take pride in your achievements.
Resources For Learning the Lithuanian Language
There are several apps to help you become proficient in the language. Classes that you can take in person at your local school and college are also plentiful in many places, and this will help you to practice speaking to other people.
Reading articles, books, and texts will give you a more extensive understanding of the language. This is likewise true for watching movies in Lithuanian to help you understand the normal, conversational Lithuanian that people speak every day. Engaging and well-written shows also have the advantage of helping you adapt to diverse accents and dialects.
Classes And Exchanges
Language classes are available in most cities, and it might be helpful to contact your local schools and colleges to check what classes they have available. Although classes can be hard to find in certain locations, being able to regularly converse with other learners will enable you to become used to hearing the language. Classes can be expensive and if it is out of your budget, there are alternative websites and resources available at a cheaper cost.
Language exchanges include sites where you can connect with other people who are also learning Lithuanian. Alternatively, you can hire a native speaker to help you understand specific vocabulary and grammar. This is a brilliant way to put into practice what you have already learnt.
Classes and exchanges can also be a wonderful way to make friends who share the same passions. Such friends may be inclined to practice speaking the Lithuanian language and so allow you to succeed together.
Image from italki.com
Italki allows you to book a highly educated private tutor and gives you total control of whoever you hire. Italki is overall a great resource for anyone at any proficiency level. There are also forums to ask questions and get feedback on your writing.
Before making a payment, you can utilise their free trial to ascertain the suitability of their tutors. However, based on our experience with the app and other verified reviews from long-term users, the quality of their tutors and the value provided by this platform is commendable.
Image from justlearn.com
Justlearn is a site where you can hire tutors to teach you Lithuanian using customised lesson plans. It is cost-effective and gives you a flexible schedule. Certain tutors also have quizzes to help you practice your newly learnt vocabulary and other materials that will help you build your proficiency.
All classes are completed through ZOOM which can be accessed through both your mobile and desktop. This makes it convenient to reach your tutors who have been through several stages in Justlearn’s lengthy verification process.
Preply operates with six fundamental values that include having a diverse and talented team. The team members have been highly trained and understand that ensuring the satisfaction of their clients is the top priority. At present, there are three top-rated tutors available whose prices range from £11-£26 per hour.
Regardless of your budget, under the tutelage of any one of their experienced tutors, you can improve several of your capabilities and become highly proficient at a comfortable pace.
Forums and Q&As
Image from hinative.com
HiNative is one of the best resources for learning Lithuanian. It is essentially a question-and-answer website and app that is free for you to access. For those who wish to pay for the premium version, it will give you access to several videos and audio featuring native speakers.
2. Talk Like Antanas
Talk Like Antanas provides courses, video lessons, exercises, grammar explanations, and one-on-one lessons. There is an additional writing course on Facebook so every month you can submit five writing tasks to be marked by experts. There is also a forum service for you to ask questions and get answers from other learners.
3. WordReference Forums
WordReference Forums enables you to ask questions and also receive translations. It is an easy-to-use website and there are senior members who often help to answer your inquiries. However, it is worth noting that the replies you receive may not be from those who are completely fluent. As a result, it is important to double-check the information you have received.
HelloTalk is a resource where you can send messages or call other individuals to practice your Lithuanian. Speaking regularly with someone fluent should help you practice and become more confident in speaking to others.
Image from speaky.com
Speaky is similar to HelloTalk where you can talk to other people who are also practising Lithuanian. It is a convenient way of reaching those who share many of your interests and goals across 180+ countries all over the world.
Image from tandem.net
Tandem has innovative messaging tools to help you to find and communicate with capable speaking partners who share similar goals. If you are willing to invest you can upgrade the app to get many more features that have been advocated by existing users.
Online And App-based Courses
There are several apps available that contain entertaining games and activities to help their users form solid foundations in the Lithuanian language.
1. Ling Lithuanian
Image from ling-app.com
Languages can be difficult to understand and depending on your methods of learning, you may become demotivated to continue. This uses entertaining activities to help you memorize Lithuanian and give you the motivation to continue expanding your mastery. The course introduces a way to learn through enjoyable games that introduce new vocabulary, intriguing dialogues, and complex grammar structures.
The introductory tutorial contains simple text and how it is pronounced both at a normal pace and a regular pace. The user interface is vibrant, and the use of cartoon-like images makes the quizzes feel more entertaining.
Image from offers.pimsleur.com
Pimsleur is a course designed for those who found language learning tedious, repetitive and did not enjoy having to memorise grammar and spelling in a ‘pen and paper’ style. The founder created interesting activities, so learners are more likely to stay committed to their goals. Users can hear expressions pronounced fluently and translations in English to help enhance their proficiency.
Image from ai.glossika.com
Glossika is an AI-based adaptive training course. It aims to get rid of the typical grammar and vocabulary-based sessions that have often been described as dull and monotonous. Through Glossika you can build your confidence in speaking Lithuanian with fluent speakers from all over the world.
Glossika provides a way of studying where you do not need to completely focus or use your hands. It enables you to easily complete other tasks or chores whilst still studying Lithuanian at a pace that is appropriate for your objectives.