topics to learn when learning a language

8 Ideas For Topics To Learn When Learning A Language

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Learning a language can sometimes get challenging. But not if you work with great and interesting topics. Being a successful language learner mostly depends on the topics you choose to learn in your foreign language. If you try to stuff a lot of useless vocabulary into your head, you won’t be very successful.

This article will give you 8 topics to learn when learning a language to succeed on your language learning journey. They will keep you on track, motivated and will give you the feeling like you’ve achieved something in your language learning process. So let’s get into it.



List Of The Topics To Learn When Learning A New Language

First of all, you have to ask yourself why you want to learn the language. This clear reason will help you to learn the language and keep you motivated. So here is a list of reasons (topics) for which you want to learn a foreign language:

  • Travel
  • Work
  • Going Abroad (exchange semester)
  • Expat living in a new country (everyday life)
  • Business
  • Gardening
  • Music
  • Sports


When learning a new language, it is crucial to choose topics that interest you. Otherwise, you might lose motivation. Also, you have to ask yourself a question for what purpose you want to learn the language. Is it travel, for work, or just for fun? Once you know the reason for learning a language, keep it in mind, and it will motivate you throughout the process.

Let’s break each topic down into more specific topics so that you can become a successful language learner. Each section also contains a few ideas to practice speaking within the topics, so check it out.

start learning vocabulary
Topics to learn when learning a language :learning vocabulary with images



1. Topic: Travel

Travel is one of the most motivational topics. In fact, Voices of Travel is all about learning languages for travel. So if you are a traveler and want to learn a language for the purpose of travel, you’re right here. Or perhaps you’re just going on a holiday and want to learn the basics of a language to communicate with locals. Or gain a general understanding of the language.

Within travel, you can choose the following topics when learning a language:

  • airport
  • transportation
  • hotel
  • restaurant
  • beach
  • sightseeing tour


These are all specific topics within the travel industry you can stick to when learning a new language. So now, choose a few topics that interest you. Or choose those you think will be most helpful for you when you travel to a new country. 

Once you have your topics, you’ll start learning new vocabulary within these topics. I call it topic specific vocabulary. You can read about the entire process from choosing the right topic specific vocabulary and how to work with it in my separate article about the best way to learn a language by yourself.

You’ll basically think about all phrases and words you’ll need to communicate in each situation. So for instance, let’s choose the airport. Write down all words you will need to communicate at the airport. It can be anything from luggage check-in, words on a plane ticket, departures, arrivals, going through security, boarding, and claiming your luggage. It is that simple. Just think about all words you’ll need to speak in a particular situation.

After you’re done, you can start creating sentences and conversations within the topic to practice your vocabulary. But you can learn the entire process for choosing and learning topic specific vocabulary in the other article, so check it out.



2. Topic: Work

Another reason why you might want to learn a new language would be a job or work. For example, I learned German because I wanted to work in a German-speaking country, particularly Switzerland. In my home country (Slovakia), salaries are very poor, and as a young adult, I knew I didn’t want to be a slave in my 9-5 job, barely earning 1000$ a month. But I knew in Switzerland, I could be much more well off if I got a job there.

So I started learning German to secure a better financial future for myself. It was in my early 20s when I still had the mindset of being employed. I managed to learn German. Thanks to it, I was able to work as a receptionist in Swiss hotels in some of the best ski resorts and earn a lot more than I would in Slovakia. That also helped me to save up for my travels.

You might be in a similar situation. Or maybe you want to move to another country and get a job there. The topics within the job industry entirely depend on the job itself you will want to do. So again, think about all the words you would need to communicate in your job.

For me as a receptionist in a hotel, these were topics such as:

  • check-in guests
  • check-out guests
  • giving information about ski resort
  • restaurant vocabulary (food & drinks)
  • billing
  • concierge
topics to learn when learning a language business topic
Topics to learn when learning a language: work vocabulary



3. Topic: Going Abroad (Exchange Semester)

Another reason why would you want to learn a language is going abroad. It can be a gap year after high school or your exchange semester from University. Or you simply want to go to a new country to experience something new in your life.

In this case, again, think about all the situations when you’ll speak the local language. These topics can be and are not limited to:

  • housing
  • meeting new friends
  • going out (restaurant, disco, beach)
  • regular conversation
  • University subjects


So now, once you know the situations (topics), take a pen, and write down all words you’ll need to communicate in each situation. After, translate these words into your target foreign language and create sentences. This is how you can learn vocabulary in topics that interest you. Then, again, check out my article about the best way to learn a language by yourself, where I break down each step for how you can learn topic specific vocabulary.

If you want to go abroad and speak a new language, you might be interested in the very basic topic in a language. These are introducing yourself, greetings, talking about your hobbies, daily routine, time, etc. Check out my guide on what to learn in a new language. It will be helpful for you to learn the very basics of the language.


Guide To Learn Basic Vocabulary In Any Language



4. Topic: Expat living in a new country

Another interesting topic and reason you would want to learn a foreign language are when you’re an expat in a new country. Or you are about to move to a new country and live there. This is one of the most motivational reasons for language learning. These are the topics within which you can learn a language:

  • housing
  • shopping
  • market
  • meeting new friends or neighbors
  • free-time activities
  • talking about your job


So the first thing you might need is housing. You’ll be moving abroad and have to make sure you get a nice place to stay, whether it’s a house or a flat. In many countries, locals don’t speak English, so you might want to learn some housing vocabulary. It can include names of each room, rent per month, fix charges, kitchen appliances, etc. Think about all the words you will need to speak when getting a new flat or house in that country.

Next, you might want to learn some food vocabulary when going shopping. For example, think about a trolley, store department, paying with card or cash, getting a bag at the counter, etc. Another advice for you is to learn how to negotiate prices on a market (especially in South America, Africa, or Asia).

And the list goes on and on. Basically, imagine each situation in which you’ll want to speak in a new country and learn vocabulary within the topic.

Barcelona itinerary 3 days
Me living with a Spanish girl in Barcelona and learning Spanish as an expat



5. Topic: Business

Business is an interesting topic, too. If you’re a businessman and have to travel overseas for a meeting, partnership, or negotiation, this will be your main topic. Or perhaps you’re about to start your business studies in a foreign language. Focus on the following topics to learn a new language:

Within business, you can learn vocabulary in the following topics:

  • airport & business class
  • business meeting
  • talking about markets and economy
  • accounting
  • risk management
  • investment


These are only examples of topics you’ll need to communicate in business. Again, think for yourself. If you do business in another country, you will need to speak a foreign language. After, gather all the vocabulary you’ll need to speak in each situation.



6. Topic: Gardening

Gardening is a popular topic, and if you want to learn a language, you can start learning vocabulary about gardening. If you’re interested in gardening, you’ll be genuinely excited about learning the words in a foreign language. The topics within gardening might be:

  • names of plants
  • names of trees
  • plant problems
  • indoor gardening
  • soil
  • growing fruit trees, vegetables, herbs, nut trees


So again, think about all gardening vocabulary. Choose a topic (situation) within which you do gardening and in whatever you’re interested in. Then start learning vocabulary in each topic. Once you master the vocabulary, I recommend you go outside and talk to yourself about gardening. If you have a garden, go outside and have a look at each tree or plant. Try to pronounce the words of each element in your garden. Imagine you’re giving somebody a tour of your garden in a foreign language.



7. Topic: Music

Music is a major topic. It can be you’re about to buy a guitar or piano from somebody speaking a foreign language. Or you want to find a community abroad interested in music. In this case, you can learn vocabulary in the following topics:

  • names of musical instruments
  • types of music
  • talking about music type you love
  • musical celebrities
  • music genres
  • modern music
  • lyrics from your favourite songs


Besides learning vocabulary within a musical topic, I recommend putting on your favorite song and learning the lyrics. Songs are one of the best ways to learn a language. Especially if you love the songs. It will get you pumped and motivated. It is also pretty catchy. So once you learn the lyrics and meaning of the words, you can be singing the entire song in a foreign language by yourself. This will help you to learn a lot.

topics to learn when learning a language music vocabulary
Topics to learn when learning a language: music vocabulary



8.Topic: Sports

For all the sports fans out there, start with anything related to sports if you want to learn a new language. Maybe you are even forced by somebody else to learn a language (but I hope not since you’re reading this article :D). Learn all the sports vocabulary that comes to your mind. Or if you are a professional sportsman, pick your sport and learn all words you need to understand in that sport. The sports topics can be, for example:

  • types of sports
  • movements (exercise)
  • names of tools for each sport
  • places where the sport is played


I recommend finding an interview (in the news or a magazine) with your favourite sportsman and learning vocabulary from the interview. If you love a particular sportsman, it will be for sure interesting to read about what he said, his thoughts, and believes. So you can go through the interview and learn vocabulary from it.

Later on, you can choose a book about famous sport personally and read it. It will all boost your language skills.



Which Topics To Learn If You Are An Absolute Beginner?

If you are an absolute beginner in the language, I recommend starting with the elementary topics. I’ve put together a step-by-step guide for what you need to learn as a beginner in a foreign language. These topics include greetings, introducing yourself, job and professions, simple verbs, daily routine, time, days of the week, numbers, and a lot more. So as an absolute beginner, I highly recommend you start with these basic topics. Simply because it will give you a general understanding of the language.

After, you can choose one of the topics from this list and learn what you’re interested in.


Step-By-Step Guide To Learn Basics In Any Language



How To Learn Vocabulary Effectively?

Choosing vocabulary is not enough. The important step is to learn the vocabulary effectively. I’ve put together a list of fun and effective strategies with which you can learn vocabulary. Check it out and learn vocabulary in each topic in a creative way. It will motivate you to make make the learning process a lot of fun.

You’ll create flashcards, vocabulary walls, play pexeso, scrabble, or associate words with images. Also, check out these 12 gifts for language learners. It includes many fun games to learn and practice vocabulary.


Effective Strategies To Learn Vocabulary

create sentences topic specific vocabulary best language learning method for adults
Me learning vocabulary for travel



More Tips On Language Learning

If you want to learn a language seriously, check out my language learning method for adults. I will walk you through the entire process of starting learning a new language. This guide includes the exact steps you need to take from start to choosing your favourite topics and how to go from a beginner language learner to an intermediate. So check it out. 


Language Learning Method For Beginner Adults


Incorporate More Resources

After you learn vocabulary within your topics, you can go to the next step. It means you can incorporate more language resources into your learning process. Start with listening to a podcast on the topic that interests you. Choose one of the best language learning podcasts and listen to it when going to work or school to constantly contact the language.

Also, start reading language books. Choose from the list of the best foreign language books and get to reading.

Another great way to learn a language in your topic is to read language magazines. They are one of the best tools for language learning as they talk about your specific topic. Choose one and play with it. You can cut texts, images and create flashcards with them. Or you can do vocabulary walls and language vision boards with the magazines. Choose some of the best foreign language magazines, or go for one that talks about your topic (gardening, business, sports, music, etc.)

Check out the best way to learn a language online for free. Watch TV shows, programs talking about your topic in a foreign language. This will all take your language skills to the next level.



These are the best ideas for topics to learn when learning a language. If you are interested in language learning, check out my language blog for more information and tips on language learning. Or go to my language resources page, and choose your perfect tool to boost your language skills.


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