I’ve been wanting to do this for a while but never figured how to get around to it. Now, for starters, I speak and understand French, Korean, Chinese and Japanese (and obviously English but that should be a no brainer). So that means there is going to be a mix of basic resources to help learn various languages and some for particular languages. Before I begin, I have to say, these are great supplemental sites but still formal teaching is needed so you can successfully speak the languages. So we’ll start general and narrow in for languages. And, please remember, it’s not easy to learn a language. You’re not going to get it immediately and that’s ok. I learned French starting at around 10, I’m still picking up new words and concepts. Same with Chinese. Languages are fluid, basically. Even English spoken 50 years ago looks different from English today and English 150 years ago doesn’t look anything like English from 50 years ago or today. It changes with the time, even if old people are stricken with enough dementia to forget they helped modify the language as well, just like young people of today. Language changes. So if you don’t get it, know that it takes time.

Live Mocha
Live Mocha is a fantastic site to learn a myriad of languages. It believes that to really get the grasp of a new language, it is important to speak to native speakers. Live Mocha will guide you as you talk to native speakers so you understand them and they understand you.

Hello Talk
Hello Talk is a mobile app that is like Live Mocha but for phones and tablets. You can learn one language at a time (I use it for Korean – however there is an update that you can add an additional language for a small fee) and therefore get native speaking partner. Just like in Live Mocha, the conversations are bilingual so you learn the learning language counterpart. Also it will pronounce what you or your partner said the language you’re learning. It’s really nice for those learning another language, however for languages with different script (such as Asian languages or Middle Eastern languages), it won’t provide a whole lot of help if you don’t know their alphabet. Won’t help much if you don’t even know what you’re reading, even if it were pronounced back at you.


Example of a Hello Talk conversation, with translation selected.


However, you can only use Hello Talk on one device so choose which one and stick with it.

Talking Translator
Here is another mobile app to help translate languages but mainly as a dictionary. It can translate between two of its very many languages. Not only will it show the Romanized version of the translated word but also the word in the language’s script – if there is any difference (Such as from English to Arabic or Korean).


I like how it differentiates between word classes, such as noun, verb, adjective, etc etc. That is really useful for when you’re stuck on a word or just can’t remember. You even get a nifty word of the day!


There are more sites to help with learning language but these are pretty decent starts. And as for the apps where you talk to a live person, remember that if you have terrible social skills (as in you can piss off people/make them uncomfortable/think poorly of you in your own language, even if you don’t know why), spend more time with the automatic translators and study books because no one anywhere in the world wants to deal with being made to feel uncomfortable because you made inappropriate comment after inappropriate comment. No one. And if you do have a disagreement, don’t reference “I have 1st Amendment rights! Freedom of speech” because no one else in the world cares. The Constitution is for the United States, not an international document. There’s a reason international laws exist. Don’t be an American idiot, it’s not an honor for them to speak with you, you’re both equals. So if you can’t get past your own “F- Yeah America!” nationalism and/or prejudice/fetishism, just stick with the books and non-chatting apps.

And for Koreaboos, Weeaboos/Otakus: stay off the live-person apps. No Japanese or Korean person wants to hear you basically boil their whole existence down to an anime or a pop singer fantasy. That’s fetishizing, which is dehumanizing. No one wants to experience that while learning a language. No one. Stick with books and non-chatting apps.