Importance of Community

Community is important.  It is far better to learn together than to go it alone.  The benefits are more than just individual items you learn.  You can draw energy and inspiration from others.  You can be introduced to ideas.  You can be supported in your effort and cheered on.  You may even mentor and inspire others.

My Korean pen pal asked me if I had any Koreans that I could hang out with, so that I could acquire some language by being exposed to it by hearing it used around me.  Unfortunately, I have never met Korean speakers in the Berkshires.  However, that doesn’t preclude me from reaching out and finding communities of people who are learning languages, or even building my own.

Follow blogs, twitter, and Facebook pages.  Visit sites like where fellow language learners hang out.  Chat with Koreans and other language learners.  Sign up for emails from language sites, like Benny Lewis’ weekly email with polyglot news.  Post on discussion boards.  Check out local meetup groups, cultural exchange groups, and other events where you could meet Korean speakers.

At it’s best, a community can work like it does for musicians who come together in collaborations and sharing.  The rich history of Jazz in New Orleans, for example, was possible because of the community of musicians who inspired and influenced each other.


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