Polyglot Gathering 2014 (Berlin, Germany)

From 15 to 19 June 2014, I participated at the Polyglot Gatherings in Berlin, Germany. The conference featured amazing presentations from many leading lights in the online polyglot community, including Richard Simcott and Luca Lampariello -, as well as, Alex Rawlings, Benny Lewis, Olly Richards, David Mansaray, Emanuele Marini, Ellen Jovin, Cesco Reale, Michal Grzeskowiak, Brian Kwong and Jan van der Aa and a whole host of others.
The gathering was a great success and many thanks to Judith Meyer and the others who organized this 4-day multilingual event.
Personally my favorite 3 presentations were “How to Reach Native-like Fluency” by Luca Lampariello, “Differences between Portuguese and Brazilian Portuguese” by Fernando Saraiva and “How Learning Chinese can be Fun” by Jan van der Aa.
In his presentation, Jan produced a really interesting slide (see below) summarizing the differences between someone who “studies” a language and someone who “learns” a language based on his own experience and observations when while Chinese in Beijing, China. I found that Jan’s slide really summed up how many of us “learn” languages to great success as opposed to “studying” them.
For my own presentation, I chose “How to learn languages while traveling” where I discussed some of the techniques I’ve employed to help me learn languages specifically when I’m traveling. Moreover, I also delved into why learning local languages can dramatically change the nature of a holiday and the numerous advantages that such a trip can bring to the multilingual traveler. You can watch my presentation below on the conference’s YouTube channel.
Student v Learner Slide from Jan van der Aa’s presentation
The second ever Polyglot Conference is scheduled for Novi Sad, Serbia during the autumn of 2014. I like, the other participants, look forward to the second annual conference after such an inspiring first event in Budapest, Hungary last year. I hope to see you there! :)
Me presenting “How to learn languages while traveling”
(Photo courtesy of David James at huliganov.tv)

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