August 21, 2016

How to learn a foreign language fast and well - short answer

A Slovak journalist once asked me to write a short paragraph about how to learn English fast and well. It is very difficult to summarize something like that into a few sentences, but I tried. Very simply put, learning a foreign language can be compared to learning how to play a guitar. If you want to learn how to play a guitar fast and well, you need two things (except for the guitar obviously):

  • spend a lot of time listening to someone who plays the guitar well 
  • spend a lot of time practicing. 

In the world of foreign languages, this translates into:

  • a lot of input (listening and reading) 
  • a lot of output (speaking and writing). 

The approach of a beginner and an intermediate student will be different of course, but the learning philosophy remains the same.

June 14, 2016

Interview for about languages, books, movies and other things

There’s a saying which goes “The more languages you know the more you are a person”. Based on this saying, Vladimir Skultety would probably have quite a lot of personalities. He belongs to a group of people which are called polyglots. He knows more languages, than is typical for one single person to know. On his blog he says, he speaks 15, half of them fluently. He became known after he posted a video on YouTube, where he spoke in even more - nineteen languages. He told us why he chose such an exotic hobby and what it feels like to be a polyglot. 

Could you tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do?

I’m 33 years old and I come from Kosice, Slovakia. I have a Master’s degree in International relations and a Bachelor’s degree in Chinese studies. I work as an interpreter of English, Mandarin Chinese and Slovak and currently work on a book about Chinese characters. I’ve lived in Taiwan for five years, in the USA for two years and have spent longer periods of time in the Czech republic, Italy and Austria.

June 11, 2016

How a video goes viral

A short video explaining how a video goes viral.
Last year I made a video which reached 1.5 million views and I thought I would make a video explaining how and why it happened.
If you like the video, feel free to comment, share or subscribe.

May 23, 2016

How to improve your accent

A video with short tips about accent improvement.

Several people have asked me to post a video about how I go about acquiring a good accent in the foreign language I study. I'm not sure whether what I do will help everyone but maybe you will find some inspiration from what I do and adjust it to your learning style.

If you like the video, feel free to comment, share or subscribe.

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April 21, 2016

Don't worry about making mistakes

I made a new video on my channel about making mistakes in language learning.

Don't worry about making mistakes too much and stay away from teachers who are too strict to beginners. This will all slow you down and create unnecessary stress and will lead you nowhere. Correcting mistakes is of course necessary but it is almost an art form. There is a time and place for every correction and talented and experienced teachers know when to correct a student.

April 16, 2016

Which language should you learn?

In one word: English

If you speak English well already, then: Spanish, Mandarin, French, Arabic or Russian

If you need to learn a language for work, then: learn the language of the country where you will be working, or the country at which your work will be aimed at.

If you'd just like to learn a language because you like learning languages, then: pick whichever language you are attracted to emotionally.

Learning languages has always been very popular. At least in countries where learning foreign languages is necessary. The most important language from where I come from to learn is English and if you would ask me, which language should you learn or work on for economic or career reasons, I would not hesitate one moment and say, you should learn English. The languages you should choose to learn however often do not depend on how much money you can make knowing them or by how much better your career prospects will be. Many factors are very individual and greatly depend on the reason why you'd might want to learn the language more than anything (obviously).

The reason

There are several reasons why you might want to learn a foreign language and usually it's one of the following:

April 02, 2016

Compound pictograms

A compound pictogram is a Chinese character used in Chinese writing, which combines two or more simple pictograms into one character in order to convey a more complex meaning. 看 for instance is a compound pictogram:

Some other examples of compound pictograms include:

投 to throw 
殳 spear

March 14, 2016

Japanese weekend in Slovakia

A taste of modern and traditional Japan in a small eastern European town. A little glimpse at Japanese calligraphy, Haiku, Haiga, Bonsai, Matcha tea and how to make it, Samurai and Ninja (but these told the public not to film them:)

March 03, 2016

University research about expressing feelings in different languages - interview

I was approached by a university student who is doing research about how people express their feelings in different languages. This short interview will be a part of that research and I thought the questions in it were very interesting and wanted to share. Hope you enjoy.

What made you start learning languages?

I don’t actually know to be honest. I grew up in a multilingual environment, where most people around me spoke several languages and it was just natural to learn at least one or two for everyone I knew. I learned several languages as a child too and just continued learning as I grew older, because I liked being good at something and this was something I could do a bit better than others I guess.

How many languages would you say you speak fluently?

February 28, 2016


Pictograms are Chinese characters which really look like pictures of what they represent. 人 'person' for instance, is a picture of a person, 女 'woman' is a picture of a woman and 月 'moon' is a picture of a moon.


The problem with pictograms is, that since they consist of only a couple of strokes, at first glance it isn't always clear what they represent. The reason for that is, that they were created a long time ago (2500+ years ago) and they changed visually very much. When they were created, these characters resembled what they represented much more.