Those who have just moved to Poland or are thinking about it should start learning Polish. Knowing the language will help you quickly adapt to a new place, get acquainted with the country’s culture and traditions, find a good job, and make new friends.
Thanks to Internet access, learning Polish is not as difficult as it might seem at first glance. You can find many practical courses on the Internet – paid and free. For this article, we asked to share the experience of a person who managed to learn Polish to level B2 (above average) in six months. Knowledge of the language at this level is enough for a comfortable stay in the country and communication with the Poles on various topics.
How to Learn Business Polish from Scratch: Where to Start
To learn Polish from scratch, you first need to decide on the training format. Some like individual lessons, others – language courses. And someone even prefers to learn the language on their own. The form of training also depends on your budget. Several different approaches can easily be combined.
Self-learning can be started by watching videos for beginners. There are a lot of them on YouTube: at first, it is recommended to find lessons where the alphabet and reading rules are explained. Particular attention should be paid to pronunciation, which is quite tricky. Subscribe to several YouTube channels and start with short and meaningful videos.
With the help of various Internet resources, you can independently learn the basic rules of reading and pronunciation. Polish letters are written in Latin, but the language itself belongs to the West Slavic group, which makes it similar to Ukrainian and (to a lesser extent) Russian. It makes the learning process a little easier.
Mobile applications for learning Polish will serve as an excellent addition. After you watch the videos about phonetics, the alphabet, and basic grammar, you should focus on vocabulary by starting to learn simple words. Mobile applications will help with this. The most popular of them:
Duolingo is a well-known application for learning foreign languages, including Polish.
Lingualeo – initially designed for learning English, other languages are now available.
Drops: Ucz się polskiego is an app for learning Polish words.
The basic versions of these applications are free, and it is possible to purchase additional features. You can download applications in Google Play (for Android) or the AppStore (for owners of Apple equipment).
If the budget allows, it is recommended to sign up for language courses or classes with a tutor. It is quite possible to learn Polish at home without any help, but Polish classes online can help. The fact is that the skills for independent study directly depend on the individual inclination toward languages. The presence of a teacher will add structure and phasing to the classes and dramatically increase self-discipline.
Courses are suitable for those who love communication and group activities. Most often, such training is paid. However, there is an opportunity to enroll in free courses from charitable foundations for those who live in Poland. For example, in Warsaw, organizations such as Ocalenie and Nasz Wybór offer free education. First, you need to pass a language test to determine your level.
Classes with a tutor are suitable for those for whom an individual approach is critical. It is especially recommended to study individually with a teacher when there is little time left (for example, a language test is coming soon or moving to Poland). But usually, these activities are more expensive. Training takes place online or live. You can find a tutor on specialized sites.
Often, foreign language learners have the following problem: they know grammar well but cannot speak fluently. It is necessary to practice the language regularly, communicate with native speakers, or, if it is impossible to talk with Poles, then with other foreigners who are also learning Polish.
In every major city (in Poland and other countries), there are conversation clubs where like-minded people gather to practice the Polish language. Or you can find an interlocutor online by leaving an ad. The easiest way to do this is on the Facebook social network, where many groups for language exchange have been created.