Tips for learning Yoruba as a foreign language
- Watch Yoruba movies and Youtube videos
Before I start my Yoruba learning in UW-Madison, I get myself familiar with the language and culture through watching Yoruba movies and videos on YouTube. There are many Youtubers teaching basic Yoruba expressions. Yoruba movies/Nollywood films are also very interesting to watch.
- Try to express yourself in Yoruba whenever and wherever you are.
I will remind myself of Yoruba expressions in my everyday life. For example, when I am eating chicken, I will think of “Mo n je adiye bayi”, which means “I am eating chicken now.”
- Don’t hesitate to “bother” your native-speaking friends
I won’t miss any chance to learn Yoruba from my Yoruba friends. They are always willing to answer my questions and teach me more useful expressions. As a friend once said to me, “Ọmọ Iya mi, mo wà fún ẹ!” (Literally means: “My mother’s child, I am here for you.”)
Expectations for a foreign language learner
- Respect a different culture
People have different cultures and have different ways of life. It’s always important to keep an open mind and respect different cultures when we are learning a foreign language.
- Keep a habit
Try to do some practice every day. You can vary your exercises to avoid boredom. Meanwhile, it’s okay to make progress slowly. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Seeing learning a language as a life-long process.