Giveaway Winners

All right, the Motivational March giveaway has ended. The winners are: Alex G. Zine Chiara G. Congrats! If you’re on that list, check your email. If you didn’t receive an email yet, let me know ASAP at Thank you to everyone who participated!

Child playing in Pattaya, Thailand
By Human Help Network (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 ( or GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

Motivation March – Part 1 – Find the Fun

Motivation is tricky. Sometimes it’s forced on you. Sometimes you’ve just got it. And sometimes you can develop it. The thing is, the kind of motivation you have makes a big impact on how successful you’re going to be–at language learning and at any activity really. In general, there are two kinds of motivation: External…

By ARieger (Own work) [GFDL ( or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Series Introduction: Motivation March

This is the introduction to my “Motivation March” series. I think this will be one of the most important set of articles I’ll write on the site because it addresses one of the main reasons people give up on their language goals: lack of motivation. And to really help motivate you, I’ve got a giveaway…

Red Square - St. Basil's Cathedral 
By Natalie (Fluent Historian)

Learning Russian Proverbs (Guest Post)

I’m really honored to have Natalie from Fluent Historian contribute a guest post. I love her writing, and she always delivers useful information. Also, there’s a lack of Russian language information on Language Surfer, so I’m extremely glad to give it some much needed attention. Take it away, Natalie… When Ron asked me to contribute…

What that lady saw.


Just wanted to tell you guys what happened to me at the supermarket yesterday. I went there to buy some health food… While I was in there, an older woman was handing out free samples: small plates of hot pasta with slices of sausage. A college-aged kid in a white T-shirt and sweatpants came striding…

By Usien (Own work) [GFDL ( or CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Easy German News – 7 Sources

You’ve been learning German for a while. Now you want to read newspapers and watch news broadcasts. But whenever you try to do that, you can’t understand much of anything. Don’t give up! There’s German news out there that’s relatively simple and that can help you get started understanding media. Here are seven sources to…

Berlin TV Tower
By Kfm1000 (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Understanding News – Language Learning

I’m still working toward becoming a German-to-English translator. After passing the ACTFL German reading exam, I’ve kept the momentum going and have been studying every day. I still have a ways to go, though, so I’m going to bump things up a notch. It’s time to get really good at understanding news. As of today…

By Scott Bauer, USDA ARS [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Six Ways to Remember New Vocabulary

When you’re learning a new language, some new words are going to come naturally to you. For example, if you live in a Spanish-speaking country, signs in the produce aisle are going to clue you in that the word “Manzana” refers to the red, green, or yellow fruit that you pick off a tree. You…

Rhubarb Cake
By Usien (Own work) [GFDL ( or CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Rhabarberbarbara Translation – A German Tongue Twister

On Twitter, user Anagrama directed my attention to a fun video: Rhabarberbarbara. (Video and translation below.) The name of the video means “Rhubarb Barbara,” and it’s apparently a take on an old German tongue-twister. One of the interesting features of the German language is its insistence on mashing words together to make one long word.…