The Best Way to Learn Greek

The full-proof strategy that will help you reach your learning goals in two to three months. Go from Beginner to Advanced fast, easy, and without spending a fortune on private tutors or group classes that last for entire semesters. So, here is the best way to learn Greek in a step-by-step guide.

What is the best way to learn Greek?

  1. Determine your goals
  2. Assess your level
  3. Set up a plan for your learning journey
  4. Find the right sources and materials
  5. Start by memorizing words and phrases in Greek
  6. Build a strong grammar and vocabulary foundation
  7. Read, listen, and converse in Greek
  8. Stay in touch with the language
the best way to learn greek

Determine your goals

What is the reason you want to start learning Greek? Are you starting a new job in Greece or Cyprus? Are you planning to study in a Greek speaking country or travelling there for a short period of time? Is it because you are interested in the Greek history or you have Greek roots and relatives who live there? These are some important questions you should answer yourself before setting up your plan for learning Greek or any foreign language.

It goes without saying that if you are going to work or study in Greece (in Greek), then you should aim to reach an advanced level of Greek. This will require a lot more time studying and even more time practicing by listening and speaking the language. On the contrary, when learning Greek is not time sensitive or an immediate requirement (e.g. for working in a Greek island for the summer season or fulfilling your dream of studying one semester in Athens), you might want to invest less time and/or money in learning Greek. However, in both cases, learning little by little every day, instead of trying to digest a lot of information all at once, is recommended.

Assess your level

The journey towards reaching your goal begins once you have determined where you stand with your Greek skills. Are you a complete beginner? Do you have any prior knowledge of Greek, are you of Greek origin or surrounded by Greek speakers? If yes, starting with the basics might not be very productive. However, it could be the wrong strategy if you lack key information, such as the Greek alphabet and the pronunciation of the different letter combinations. It will be hard to keep up with grammar and complex vocabulary if you are unable to write or read in Greek, although you can already engage in small conversations.

Helinika has prepared a quiz that can help you assess your Greek language level:

Set up a plan for your learning journey

Whatever your goals might be regarding your Greek language skills, setting up a clear plan is recommended. How many times per week are you going to dedicate into your learning efforts? What time of the day are you going to study and for how long? How can you practice? How can you reach your learning goals within the right time frame? Adding the time dedicated to your studies of the Greek language into your weekly planner will decrease the chances of you skipping your learning time.

Start memorizing words and phrases in Greek

When babies learn their mother tongue, they are not taught any complicated grammar. They listen to their parents and other adults talk and repeat what they hear. As a beginner, it is recommended to memorize some Greek words and phrases that you can use to engage in small talk. This will boost your confidence and interest in learning more about the language. Starting with complex grammatical rules and vocabulary might be proven discouraging for a lot of people.

Build a strong grammar and vocabulary foundation

Once you’ve learned some basic Greek words and phrases, it is important to start studying the grammar and vocabulary. This way you can communicate freely, start creating your sentences, and avoid depending on the limited vocabulary you have memorized in the beginning. Building a strong grammar and vocabulary foundation is crucial as you progress towards an intermediate/advanced level.

Read, listen, and converse in Greek

Memorizing words and phrases and studying the Greek grammar and vocabulary is necessary but also limiting. In order to learn Greek and be able to use it in your day-to-day life, you need to read, listen, and converse in Greek. The first two is quite easy. You can listen and read the news (e.g. HuffPost Greece, CNN Greece, ERT, and more). When it comes to conversing, if you don’t know any native Greek speakers yourself or people who learn Greek, you can join a tandem group. Tandem language learning is a method of language learning based on mutual language exchange between tandem partners. Ideally, each tandem learner is a native speaker in the language the other person wants to learn, however, it often refers to conversations between people who are in the process of learning a new language.

Stay in touch with the language

Sometimes, people get hooked on learning a new language, they invest a lot of time and money and then, once they feel they have achieved a certain level, they abandon their new skill. However, learning a new language is not the same as learning how to cycle. You need to stay in touch with it and, if speaking is not an option, reading books and watching movies can be an entertaining way of practicing your hard-earned skills.

Why Helinika’s video courses are suitable for everyone:

It doesn’t matter what your current level and learning goals are, Helinika can offer you a solution. We offer free materials and affordable video courses for different levels.

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Marialena Perpiraki is a journalist and writer from Athens, Greece. In 2020, she founded Helinika as a cross-media platform.