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EuroTalk’s Top 10 Tips for Learning a Language in 2014 [Infographic]

Happy New Year! As life begins to return to normal, it’s time to get going on our New Year’s Resolutions (assuming we haven’t broken them already…) Many people will be taking the opportunity to learn a language, so we’ve put together this handy infographic with our top 10 tips to keep you motivated. Enjoy!

EuroTalk's Top 10 Tips for Learning a Language in 2014

If you’ve enjoyed our infographic, please share it with others using one of the options below. We’d love to hear which languages you’re learning too, and how it’s going, so do let us know in the comments.

Read more about this in our recent blog post, Learning a Language – our top 10 tips.


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EuroTalk: a look back at 2013

It’s been another busy year at EuroTalk, with new products, new languages… and a new puppy. Throw in a royal encounter and a cake that looks like a Dalek, and you’ve got the makings of an interesting twelve months.


In June, we launched our new app for iPhone and iPod touch, uTalk. This had been in development for a long time, and we were really proud and excited to be able to share it with the world. It’s got more content and more activities, and it’s free to download and start learning the essential words you need to get by in 60 languages. We’ve been adding more languages regularly since the app was launched, and will continue to do so over the coming months. So if we haven’t yet got the language you need, don’t worry – we soon will.

uTalk - the free language learning app from EuroTalk

And that’s not all. Last month, we added Lao, the official language of Laos and also spoken in the north east of Thailand, to our range with the release of Talk Now, our beginner program for PC and Mac. Lao has about 15 million speakers worldwide, and is a language we’ve been wanting to offer for some time now. There are more new languages on the way in 2014, so watch this space…


This year also saw the launch of part 2 of our second maths app, Maths, age 4-6, and two new practice apps – Count to 10 and Count to 20. We also released a version of Maths age 3-5, for schools, so teachers can use the app in the classroom.

Maths practice - Count to 10 from EuroTalk


We’ve been working in Malawi now for several years, as part of our mission to ensure one billion primary age children reach their full potential in numeracy, reading and English. This year, Dr Nicola Pitchford from the University of Nottingham conducted an evaluation at Biwi Primary School in Malawi, to measure how effective our maths apps are for the children’s learning, compared to other teaching methods, including other apps. The preliminary results show that not only did the group using our apps perform significantly better than the other groups, but in fact they tripled their maths knowledge in just eight weeks. This is really exciting and encouraging, and we hope now to scale up the project in Malawi to reach more children, in more schools.

Child in Malawi taking part in the evaluation

Junior Language Challenge

2013 saw the return of the JLC, after a year off in 2012. Our annual language learning competition for primary age children across the UK is always very popular, and this year was no exception. We were joined at the final by Martha Payne of NeverSeconds, who at just 10 years old, has raised over £140,000 for Mary’s Meals, a charity providing school dinners to children in Malawi. Martha, with her dad and her sister, was our special guest and handed out the prizes to our finalists, including the JLC Champion for 2013, Ella Whittingham from West Bridgford, Nottingham.

Junior Language Challenge champion Ella Whittingham with Martha Payne from NeverSeconds

Martha Payne with JLC Champion Ella Whittingham, runners-up Morgan Fry and Tudor Mendel-Idowu, and EuroTalk Chairman Richard Howeson

A Royal Visit

In October, Steve was honoured by a visit from Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand, while at an exhibition in Bangkok. The Princess came to have a look at the EuroTalk stand, and later Steve presented her with a gift on behalf of the company. He had to be instructed on the correct way to bow, and fortunately he got it right!

Steve meets Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand

New arrivals

This year, we’ve said a sad goodbye to Glyn, Tom and Hanna, but welcomed Safia, Seb and Pablo. We’ve also been lucky to have Lorena with us from Germany for a few months; you may have enjoyed some of her blog posts! And in August we welcomed Molly the puppy, who caused a certain amount of mayhem, but was very easily forgiven because she’s so cute.

Molly the EuroTalk puppy

Fancy dress fun

We entered into the ‘spirit’ of Halloween by getting dressed up for the occasion. With everything from vampires to skeletons, pumpkins to werewolves, we were quite a sight to behold. Although some of us were scarier than others…


EuroTalk does Halloween

Lots of cake

We’ve always enjoyed a bit of cake here at EuroTalk, but this year we’ve been thoroughly spoilt, with keen bakers Safia and Alex (but mostly Safia) providing us with masterpieces like this amazing Dalek cake. (It took us three days to eat, but it was totally worth it.)

Dalek cake


And so the year has come to an end in style. Thanks as always for reading our blog, and to our guest bloggers who’ve been in touch over the last year. Please do contact us if you have something you’d like to share!

Happy New Year, everyone – see you in 2014!


If at first you don’t succeed…

Gloria’s post today is about her work on the EuroTalk roof garden, which is a lovely place for us to enjoy in the summer sunshine. Getting it that way hasn’t been easy, but the end result shows that sometimes it’s worth persevering. The same could be said for learning a language!

When I was first handed responsibility for looking after the roof garden at EuroTalk I felt quite smug. Easy – or so I thought! And a good reason (or excuse?) for removing myself from the computer screen quite often. I have a large garden at home, so I already have a lot of experience in planting, pruning, weeding and watering etc. What’s more – I know it’s an ongoing task for at least nine months of the year, so I expected a lot of hard, back-breaking work in the open air. I wasn’t wrong!

What I didn’t bargain for was the changing face of EuroTalk.

The EuroTalk gardenLast summer (2012) I had a beautiful display of colours blending up on the roof. My favourites are the pinks and mauves, so I’d planted a whole lot of flowers in these colours. By June the roof garden was looking really healthy and beautiful and I felt that all my backaches had been worth it. Then it happened!

In July the builders moved in. They erected scaffolding on the terrace and moved a lot of the pots to safer places while they worked on building a new room and putting in a panoramic window which formed the entire exterior wall of this extension. But this took time – nine months, to be exact. I could have had a baby in that length of time (well I couldn’t, but one of our younger staff did!)

The two canvas sails, which had created shade for anyone sitting at the huge wooden table, were removed and allowed to hang up against a wall, thus preventing both light and rain water from reaching a number of the troughs and pots throughout the autumn and winter. Builders rubble appeared out of nowhere – bricks, cement, wood, plastic bags and sacks etc. – you name it and it appeared on our lovely roof terrace. I sat and cried, and vowed to myself that someone else could sort it all out once the building work was finished. I’d had enough. I felt totally disillusioned at all my hard work being destroyed.

Although I went on to the roof garden several times during those dark months, I wasn’t able to do much other than put some water on the dried out pots and cross my fingers!

Then finally, in March 2013 the building work was completed. On the third attempt, the panoramic window was finally fitted satisfactorily and the scaffolding eventually disappeared. The rubble was cleared away and all the pots were put back into place. The builders did a very good job of cleaning the roof garden and the artificial turf began to look like real grass once more. Even the cigarette ends disappeared.

Then began the task of resurrection. A number of visits to the garden centre worked wonders. Then the automatic watering system caused a number of problems. Not all pots had feeds off the main, so this had to be sorted out. Once we had additional bits and pieces, again I thought it was finished. Not so. The older bits didn’t like working with the newer ones so another visit to the garden centre was required. With help from two of my colleagues (Alan and Steve) it is now working correctly. Fingers crossed again!

The finished gardenI split and transferred the crocosmia so that both cauldrons now contain orange crocosmia and a potentilla – one yellow and one white. The main pots and troughs are back up and in full flower, mainly pinks and mauves of course, but with a few other colours added for variety. I’d managed to salvage the lavenders, but it took a lot of T.L.C. and I’m now happy once more with the result – a verdant, lush, colourful display.

With the constantly changing colours and differing amounts of foliage as the year progresses, I see it as a kaleidoscope of never-ending challenges. And I’m currently rooting some chocolate mint on my desk to replace the one that shrivelled from lack of water. Yipppeeee – it’s working.

But I’m begging our bosses, please don’t plan to do any more extensions. My back and my temper can’t take it…….



A Year in the Life of EuroTalk

There’s no doubt 2012 has been a pretty special year for the UK and the world, but it’s also been quite an eventful one at EuroTalk.


In January we released a new app, the first in a series to teach maths to primary school age children.

Maths, age 3-5

This is a part of our mission to reach a billion children with fantastic educational apps, to get them off to a great start in life. The most exciting thing about the apps is that we’ll be translating them into 200 languages so they can literally be used by any child, anywhere.

Maths, age 3-5 was an instant hit with parents and children all over the world, and we were delighted with the response. Ever since then we’ve been working hard on the next app, for 4-6 year olds, which has just this week been released to the App Store. The whole series will cover all the years of primary school and we’re really excited about the future!


Our work in Malawi has continued this year. In February, Andrew, Jamie, Zane, Alan and RoseMarie, who’s the author of the maths apps, travelled to Malawi to install iPods with the app translated into the local language of Chichewa, in primary schools. They also trained teachers and pupils on how to use the devices. The project is being run in partnership with the Scottish government, and last month Andrew and Jamie returned to Malawi, where they met with Michael Russell, the Scottish Education Secretary. He was delighted with the project so far, which has been declared a success!

Michael Russell joins children at the Kumbali kindergarten in Malawi

Michael Russell joins children at the Kumbali kindergarten in Malawi


We’ve also been really busy with our language learning programs. In October we released Talk More, Talk the Talk and Talk Business as downloads, as well as the Instant USB, which combines Talk Now and Talk More on one handy and portable USB drive, so it works with all the new computers that don’t have CD drives.

Baby boom! 

Barnie, the face of EuroTalk

This year, Zsolt, Olga and Chelsey all welcomed new babies – and brought them in to the office so we could all have a cuddle! Zsolt’s little boy Barnie even became the new ‘face of EuroTalk’ for a while when we posted this photo on our Facebook page.

Arrivals and departures

Sadly over the year we’ve had to say goodbye to a few people as Lotta, Ryan, Katie and Sheila all moved on to new challenges. But we also welcomed some new team members: Fiona, who looks after all our customers (and us) brilliantly; Pedro and Michal, our new app developers; Nat and Alex, who are busy getting our new products translated into hundreds of languages; and Tom, who’s only with us for a year but is already a hugely valued member of the team, helping with customer orders and product testing among many other tasks.

Marathon men – and woman

In October, Al, Franco, Glyn, Jamie, Zane and Zsolt all ran the Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon in London in aid of some great charities. They all worked really hard training, and of course on the day itself, and are already talking about taking part again next year…

And that’s all for 2012! But we’ll be back in 2013 with more plans and exciting new products. Thanks for reading our blog this year, and we look forward to bringing you more news, opinions and guest posts next year! And as always if you have anything you’d like to share, do get in touch.

Have a great Christmas and New Year, everyone!

Liz and the EuroTalk team