50 Inspiring Language Quotes for Language Learners

by | Jun 7, 2019

Inside: A collection of inspiring language quotes for motivating language learners. 

Learning a new language is no small feat: it requires a huge amount of effort and dedication. Obviously, in certain parts of the word being multilingual is much more common, and then there’s always the lucky ones who simply grew up bilingual. 

Whatever the context of your language learning, the rewards are enormous and should be celebrated. This collection of language quotes will help you find inspiration and motivation, wherever you are in the language learning journey!

Language learning quotes

 

 

Language Quotes for Learners

 

There are so many reasons to learn a new language. Better jobs, travel, social skills, and the cognitive benefits are well-detailed, but there’s also something about the sheer joy and pleasure of knowing more than one language. These quotes touch on a variety of those motives; let’s start off with quotes that focus on the benefits of multilingualism itself.

 

Language Quotes about Multilingualism

 

 


 

“Learning another language is not only learning different words for the same things, but learning another way to think about things.”

– Flora Lewis


 


 

Those who know nothing of foreign languages know nothing of their own

‒ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


 

“It is astonishing how much enjoyment one can get out of a language that one understands imperfectly.”

– Basil Gildersleeve


 

“One of the benefits of being bicultural is simply the awareness that how you live is not the only way.”

– Ann Campanella


 

 

 


 

With languages, you are at home anywhere.”

– Edward De Waal


 

“The limits of my language are the limits of my world.” 

‒ Ludwig Wittgenstein


 

 


 

“Language is the road map of a culture. It tells you where its people come from and where they are going.” 

‒ Rita Mae Brown


 

“We should learn languages because language is the only thing worth knowing even poorly.”

– Kató Lomb


 

“Language is the blood of the soul into which thoughts run and out of which they grow.” 

‒ Oliver Wendell Holmes

 


 

“Does you know what a foreign accent is? It’s a sign of bravery.” 

– Amy Chua


 

 


 

“A different language is a different vision of life.” 

– Federico Fellini


 

Language exerts hidden power, like a moon on the tides.” 

– Rita Mae Brown


 

The most intimate temper of a people, its deepest soul, is above all in its language.” 

– Jules Michelet

 


 

You can never understand one language until you understand at least two.” 

– Geoffrey Willans


 

 


 

A language is an exact reflection of the character and growth of its speakers.”

– Cesar Chavez


 

Speak a new language so that the world will be a new world.”

– Rumi


 

Own only what you can always carry with you: know languages, know countries, know people. Let your memory be your travel bag.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

 


 

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.”

‒ Nelson Mandela


 

 

 


 

There are hundreds of languages in the world, but a smile speaks them all.”

– Anonymous


 

“A special kind of beauty exists which is born in language, of language, and for language.”

‒ Gaston Bachelard


 

Learning a new language is becoming a member of the club – the community of speakers of that language.” 

‒ Frank Smith

 


 

“To learn a language is to have one more window from which to look at the world.” 

– Chinese Proverb


 

 

 

 


 

I love commuting between languages just like I love commuting between cultures and cities.”

– Elif Safak


 

Language is wine upon the lips.”

– Virginia Woolf


 

To learn a new language is, therefore, always a sort of spiritual adventure; it is like a journey of discovery in which we find a new world.”

– Ernst Cassirer

 


 

To have another language is to possess a second soul.” 

‒ Charlemagne


 

 


 

Speak a new language so that the world will be a new world.”

– Rumi


 

Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.” 

‒ Chinese Proverb


 

One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way.”

 – Frank Smith

 


 

Any time you think some other language is strange, remember that yours is just as strange, you’re just used to it.” 

– Anonymous


 

 

 

Language Learning Quotes

 

This collection of quotes speaks to the process of learning a new language, (for kids and adults!) and teaching language at home or in school. Language acquisition often looks different from what we expect and these nuggets of wisdom have helped me as a teacher and parent!

 


 

“Language acquisition proceeds best when the input is not just comprehensible, but really interesting, even compelling; so interesting that you forget you are listening to or reading another language.”

– Stephen Krashen


 

“Everything you say to your child is absorbed, catalogued and remembered.” 

‒ Maria Montessori


 

 

 


 

“We learn grammar from language, not language from grammar.”

 – Kato Lamb


 

“Thought flows in terms of stories–stories about events, stories about people, and stories about intentions and achievements. The best teachers are the best story tellers. We learn in the form of stories.”

 – Frank Martin


 

“You can’t make your child speak a language. However, you can set the stage so they will want to speak it.” 

– The Bilingual Edge


 

 

 


 

“We acquire language when we understand messages, when we understand what people tell us and when we understand what we read.”

– Stephen Krashen


 

“Learning is most successful when it involves only a limited amount of stress, when students are relaxed and confident and enjoying their learning; but the use of correction encourages exactly the opposite condition.”

‒ John Truscott


 

“It is not at all the case that the more linguistically simple an item is, the earlier it is acquired. Some very “simple” rules may be among the last to be acquired.”

 – Stephen Krashen

 


 

“Bilingualism is an incredible gift to give to a child. It goes beyond just learning another language. It broadens mental development, thought patterns, and world perspective.” 

– Bilingual Mom in Oregon to Dear Abby

 


 

 


 

“What we learn with pleasure we never forget.”

– Alfredy Mercier


 

“Talk to your baby. Get used to speaking to your baby about everything that you are doing.”

‒ Rita Rosenback


 

“Listen earnestly to anything your children want to tell you, no matter what. If you don’t listen eagerly to the little stuff when they are little, they won’t tell you the big stuff when they are big, because to them all of it has always been big stuff.”

 – Catherine M. Wallace

 


 

“Each day of our lives we make deposits in the memory banks of our children.” 

– Charles R. Swindoll

 


 

 


 

“It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives. It’s what we do consistently.”

– Anthony Robbins


 

“The fact that all normal children acquire essentially comparable grammars of great complexity with remarkable rapidity suggests that human beings are somehow specially designed to do this, with data-handling or ‘hypothesis-formulating’ ability of unknown character and complexity.”

‒ Noam Chomsky


 

“Our patience will achieve more than our force.”

 – Edmund Burke

 


 

“We are designed to walk… That we are taught to walk is impossible. And pretty much the same is true of language. Nobody is taught language. In fact, you can’t prevent the child from learning it. ” 

– Noam Chomsky

 


 

“The best thing to spend on your children is your time.” 

– Louise Hart


 

Welcome

Hey! I’m Elisabeth, a teacher and mom raising two bilingual kids in the Peruvian jungle. Read our story here. I love digging up the best Spanish resources for all you busy parents and teachers!

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