Today I wanted to talk about how you can open yourself to new creations and new ideas. As some of the best chef, who usually travel to different countries in order to try to learn the most from the different cuisines I want to give idea of how you can take the same concept to explore different cultures. However, not all of us have enough money to even buy the initial flight ticket. Nevertheless, universities and sites have intended to replicate it. Some universities as my previous one have a program specifically design for international students that wanted to learn enough English either to start their studies there or to then apply to a top universities. In these program they have a cultural exchange events where internationals are pair with native speaker both for the international to speak English outside their classroom and learn faster and as well for the native speaker to explore different culture and food without traveling to the country.
Also, in some states you can have similar experience which is useful to practice a language that you learn in school or by yourself and want to practice to don’t forget it. In Washington, D.C. and I am sure in other states as well, in bars or other places they have something that it is called language exchange, events where you hang out and start talking with native speaker in their language while meeting new people.
If going out and be extroverted is not your thing, there is other ways that you can learn different language and know people without leaving your house. For those of you that want to learn a language or simply want to know people around the world, there are two sites that I like a lot, one is called WeSpeke is basically a site where you put your name and picture and then you put what language you are native or willing to teach and which one you are learning. The sites can create matches for you which are basically matches created based on the interest that you listed and language you are interested in learning. However, you can also put the language you are interested and it will appear everyone with that native language that is online and you choose which person you want to talk to. You can do video or chat there. The only CONS, I will say is that when you do video chat you can’t talk with no one else except the person you are doing the call for the remaining of the call.
The other site is conversation exchange. For me it works best because there are more native speakers for the language that I want to learn but there is a lot of CONS if you want to use the site for searching people. When you use WeSpeke you can see who is online but you don’t see that with conversation exchange, you just see the last time they were online unless you added them as friend. In order to connect with them you read the profile and if your interest match you can send an email. I think this is good in the sense you don’t see picture of anyone so is like talking but you don’t know who is behind, which I think is more fun because it create surprise if you want to do a video call and you see the person for the first time and you guys have being talking for weeks. Also, it remains on the purpose of the site which is to learn languages. I have never try the video chat but the chat is similar to Facebook chat, were you have your friends and by pressing one it will create a small window that will allow them to talked to each other.
These are three ways that you can explore new cultures and languages and meet people. Different perspective of life is what allows people to see different problems in life from a different angle and create diverse solution to a problem. It helps you be creative and scientifically, people that are bilingual are more likely to adapt to hard situations not because they had rough time in the past but because by switching back and forth altering the plasticity of the brain allow them to adapt quick and change from one language to another. I definitely recommend you to try one of these activities and let me know what your thoughts are. As always:
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