International Mother Language Day: Honouring our Native Languages
by Maria Ansede
International Mother Language Day started in the year 2000 and is celebrated on the 21th of February every year. The purpose of International Mother Language Day is to promote and protect linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism. Many languages around the world are slowly dying out but mother languages, or native tongues, are the essential tools that allow us to learn and transmit our heritage and traditions. Nothing promotes unity and understanding of diversity better than languages and the dialogue they produce. This year’s theme is “Towards Sustainable Futures through Multilingual Education” and in order to support this theme Cactus Language has chosen some useful free online resources that will make learning a new language a more sustainable experience.
Our Top 5 Free Online Language Resources
Duolingo is very aware that everyone learns in different ways. That’s why this entertaining and user-friendly mobile app is so popular. You will find a wide range of vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation and translation exercises in many languages. Duolingo is the favourite language app for the Cactus team and a great way to support your learning.
WordReference is one of the most-used online dictionaries. Having been around for almost 20 years, it has evolved into a great selection of language learning tools in several languages, all in one place: bilingual dictionary, thesaurus, verb conjugator and one of the best language forums to discuss meanings and translations of words and expressions in many languages.
The correct pronunciation of any word is usually one of the most difficult things to perfect when you learn a new language. Forvo is a free pronunciation guide with a database of nearly 4 million words for over 330 languages. All its contents are created and maintained by native speakers from all over the world.
Memrise is a popular website and mobile app based on three keywords: science, fun and community. They help you to memorise new vocabulary faster, in a fun way and with the possibility of watching and sharing tips and multimedia content such as videos, audio, mnemonics and much more to improve your learning experience.
Quizlet is an entertaining and simple website and mobile app that helps you to develop your vocabulary by using or creating flash cards, word games and tests. Moreover, you will be able to search for any kind of content within its millions of study sets, from French Animals to Chinese numbers, or the spelling of the Crime and Punishment character names.
Cactus language offers the following types of language courses:
Evening language courses: 19 different languages in 15 UK locations
Language holidays: worldwide immersion courses in the country of the language
Private tuition: tailor-made and corporate language training solutions throughout the world
TEFL: teacher training courses for both English and other languages all over the world
Online courses: for teacher training, English and French