1. Using only one channel of learning. Most students are used to their textbooks and learn only in class or at home when doing their homework. They don’t watch movies (not even to practice listening), nor use the internet. It’s a mistake, the more channels of learning, the better. Variety is your friend!

2. Not learning accidentally, in the natural way. You heard a Polish conversation on the street, one word got your attention but you can’t remember it now. Next time write it down as soon as you can e.g. using your phone and check in an online dictionary when you get a chance. Learning a language cannot just take place at school. I’m always happy when my students tell me about a situation e. g. at work and ask about a word used by their Polish colleague. Curiosity is your friend!

3. Lack of a specific goal. When can you say that you really know Polish? When will you be satisfied with your Polish level? Set your goal and divide it into detailed points. For example, if you want to use the Polish language:

- when shopping – ask yourself what you’re going to buy: food, clothes, electronics?

- at work – consider the people you want to talk to in Polish and the things you plan to say.

Such detailed points will allow you to determine, among other things, the vocabulary that you need the most.

4. Taking breaks. You started learning but for some reason (heavy workload, going on a trip) you’ve decided to put off your lessons “for later”. You can take a break from your course but not from learning. Even if you stop your lessons, do not lose contact with the language. Ask the tutor to make an online course especially for you and recommend you some MP3 learning files or Polish lessons on YouTube! It will make it easier for you to return to studying regularly, because you won’t forget what you’ve learned so far and you won’t feel that once again you’re starting from scratch.

5. Not speaking Polish in everyday situations. Students – especially beginners – often say that they are afraid to speak Polish e.g. when shopping, because they don’t want anybody to assume that they can say and understand everything in Polish. There’s a way out. All you have to do is learn the sentence: “Przepraszam, mówię tylko trochę po polsku” (“I’m sorry, I only speak a little Polish”). :)