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The summer is approaching fast—and faster each passing year—and with it, our annual learning slump. Everything runs slower, school’s out, we lose motivation to study, and so on. It is true that we fall behind on all skills during the summer, but don’t worry; there are a few solutions.

As we daydream about vacations and endless sandy beaches, our language-learning motivation may wane. That is why we need to step it up a notch and work harder to overcome the slump. Let’s look at why summer slows down our language learning efforts and what we can do to keep up the momentum.

Why is there a learning curve during the summer?

We’ve all noticed that during the summer, we’re not as eager to learn—or we face a lot more challenges. Vacations, a lack of structure, heatwaves, distractions—there are numerous reasons for a learning curve during the summer. Let’s go through them one by one.

Change in our routine

If you are a person who thrives on routine, the summer’s more relaxed schedule can disrupt your learning habits. This is certainly true for schools and universities, but many workplaces have a more relaxed schedule in the summer. Many people take vacation days, particularly in July and August, and some businesses close for much of the summer.

No matter why our routine changes, this change can decrease the intensity and frequency of our efforts to learn a language. This inability to study consistently can result in a small learning curve.

Lack of structured learning environments

Along with the routine change, another factor in why you cannot easily learn a language over the summer is the lack of a specific, structured learning environment that can help you stay on track. Without a clear path set by a tutor, teacher, or school, it can be really difficult to maintain motivation and focus since it all falls on you.

On a second note, it’s not only the absence of structure that can make us fall behind. For some people, it is also the absence of a “need for accountability.” While not everyone requires someone to hold them accountable in order to learn—and we all know that being forced to learn or study something will result in the opposite outcome—having someone to report to, or even just share our progress with and receive constructive feedback, can help us learn more efficiently.

Reduced access to resources

Another possible reason for the summer learning curve is limited access to resources. Summer means that schools are closed, language teachers are on vacation, and so on. This can impede your language learning progress. Of course, you can always combat it by using LiveXP, which provides access to dozens of tutors and teachers throughout the year.

Summer distractions

Summer can be a very distracting season. With so many leisure activities available and it being the “vacation season” of the year, there are numerous distractions that could keep you from sitting down and studying. The motivation to learn a language fades as the weather warms and our free time increases, so we prefer to spend it with friends, traveling, or simply relaxing. Thus, all of these activities may divert our attention away from language learning, as well as a lack of mental stimulation from activities that necessitate learning and concentration.

Extreme weather conditions

Summer is not only fun and games. If you live in a hot climate, heatwaves can have a negative impact on your language learning efforts. As someone who lives in Greece, I can tell you that the months of July and August cause me to perform poorly in almost every aspect that requires concentration. That is only logical: unless you spend the entire day in an air-conditioned environment, you cannot practice grammar when the temperature is at 40°C/104°F. In those cases, you should not feel bad about having a temporary learning slump.

How to stay motivated for language learning during the summer

The reasons for falling behind in your language studies are real, and they can affect you. That is not to say that there are no walkarounds around them. Let’s talk about some strategies for staying motivated to practice the language you’ve been learning over the summer.

Summer Lessons

Taking lessons at a summer school or with a tutor can be an excellent way to reintroduce scheduling into your daily life. The only problem you can face is a lack of consistency in summer. Language schools won’t motivate you for lessons. Actually, no one will. But, on LiveXP, you can set your Weekly lesson schedule to keep disciplined and complete your learning goals. This Weekly schedule will keep you on track and will book lessons automatically with a chosen tutor on set days and times. As you learn from any device, including your smartphone, you can have just conversational lessons from anywhere. That means you can continue taking lessons even while on vacation if you want. It’s just like a phone call with your friend.

Set smaller, achievable goals

Summer, like any other time of year, requires you to slow down from time to time. So, don’t try to overachieve because it will only lead to frustration and, possibly, abandonment of your goals. Instead, try to set smaller, more manageable goals to help you stay motivated. You can even make a game out of it with your friends; if they are also learning a language, you could set up a competition or something of the sort.

Your language tutor on LiveXP can help you create your own milestones for the summer period. If you don’t want to learn intensively and don’t want to lose progress at the same time, your private tutor will create a summer plan for you.

Utilize outdoor learning

The advantage of summer, when it is not too hot, is that you can spend time outside. You can have a picnic in the park or on the beach and practice your language skills while enjoying the beautiful weather.

With the LiveXP app, you can practice new words anywhere using the Word Trainer feature. All you need is a smartphone and Internet connection, which is what everyone has nowadays.

Language-focused vacation

If you get the chance to travel abroad where people speak your target language, do so! Immersion in the language is an excellent way to learn and practice, especially at your own pace. Choose your destination and try to grasp what native speakers are saying—at a rapid pace, though.

If you don’t have the opportunity to go abroad, don’t be upset. You can easily find native speakers on LiveXP who can do the same. Visit the website and experience the feel of the country with native speakers.

Watch TV / movies / sports in your target language

Because you’ll be spending more time under the A/C and in front of the television during the summer, this is an excellent time to watch more content created in our target language. Choose a movie or binge-watch a TV series to practice your preferred language while having fun.

Another option, if you enjoy sports, is to look for commentaries in your target language. Because many sporting events take place around the world during the summer, you can find a live stream of your favorite match in the language you’re learning and practice with it.

Another great option is to discuss your favorite movies and shows you watch with your languag tutor in a target language. On LiveXP, you can find tutors who share your interests and are excited about the same shows or movies. You will have a great time discussing your lovely topics and learning at the same time.

Benefit from learning with a tutor who shares your interests. Make your learning experience even more engaging.

Update your summer reading list

No list of strategies on how to stay motivated to learn a language would be complete without mentioning books. The benefit of not having such a strict schedule during the summer is that you have more free time to pursue your hobbies. So, if you choose a book in your target language, it will undoubtedly be difficult to read. However, you will have more time to research and experiment with new vocabulary and expressions. Or pick something at your proficiency level. Every time you meet new words and phrases, just open up the LiveXP app and add these words to Word Trainer. They will be saved so you can learn during your practice sessions in the app.

Summer playlist

Of course, music is a great way to stay motivated. Make a playlist of songs in your target language and let it accompany you through the summer. It will be easier if you choose songs that are closer to the genres you enjoy listening to rather than just the most popular ones. Alternatively, you can select a pre-made summer playlist in your desired language.

Summertime and language learning motivation

Summer is a low-learning season, and we all struggle to keep up with our regular schedules. However, if you implement the strategies and tips outlined above, you will be able to overcome the summer learning sludge. Check out LiveXP to decide which language you’ll learn next. Have a great summer learning a new language!

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