What kind of Valentine are you?

Valentines_blog

Is Valentine’s a special day for you?

Do you get flowers and chocolates to your loved one?

Do you use Valentine’s to get away from the daily routine and revive your feelings to your loved ones?

Or maybe you think that any day should be like Valentine’s day if you really love someone?

Or you do not have a significant other and all these couples just annoy you?

So for those of us (yes, me included) who think that it’s another day that all the shops want to sell us chocolate and fake hearts, here’s a bit of the history based on Wikipedia on how it all started:

 

St. Valentine’s Day began as a liturgical celebration of one or more early Christian saints named Valentinus. A popular legend says that Saint Valentine of Rome states was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire. According to legend, during his imprisonment, he healed the daughter of his jailer, Asterius. Before his execution he wrote her a letter signed “Your Valentine” as a farewell.

The day was first associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished. In Europe, Saint Valentine’s Keys are given to lovers “as a romantic symbol and an invitation to unlock the giver’s heart”.

And although Valentine’s day is celebrated as a day of lovers in many countries, there are many differences as to when and how the day is celebrated:

 

  • In Chinese, Valentine’s Day is celebrated on the seventh day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar. It commemorates a day on which a legendary cowherder and weaving maid are allowed to be together.
  • In ancient Tel Aviv times girls would wear white dresses and dance in the vineyards, where the boys would be waiting for them. It is celebrated on the 15th day of the month of Av (usually in late August).
  • In Saudi Arabia, in 2002 and 2008, religious police banned the sale of all Valentine’s Day items.
  • According to findings, Singaporeans are among the biggest spenders on Valentine’s Day, with 60% of Singaporeans indicating that they would spend between $100 and $500 during the season leading up to the holiday.
  • In India Hindu and Islamic traditionalists have considered Valentine’s day to be cultural contamination from the West, a result of the globalization in India.
  • In the UK around £1.3 billion is spent yearly on cards, flowers, chocolates and other gifts for the Valentine’s day.
  • In the USA about 190 million Valentine’s Day cards are sent each year.

Whatever your reasons or customs, Valentine’s can still be a nice getaway from daily routine to be with your loved one.

 

And if you do want to be different, why not give your loved one a chance to speak your language?

Or give a present of saying “I REALLY MISSED YOU TODAY” in their language!

 

Check out our different courses and make someone feel very special this Valentine’s day!

 

Why learning German is important today

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Could you imagine that learning German can be fun and easy? Yes, FUN and EASY.

 

You don’t believe us? See what Heidi from the 30DAYs German Challenge have to say about the FUN part – 

 

As for the EASY part, did you know that knowing English makes you advanced in German? Yes, that’s right. Just look at this:

Haus = house, Buch = book, Finger = finger, Hand = hand, Name = name, Mutter = mother, schwimmen = to swim, singen = to sing, kommen = to come, blau = blue, alt = old, windig = windy.

Modern German and modern English both evolved from Germanic and hence they share many similarities in both vocabulary and grammar.

So now that you know that learning German is both – FUN & EASY let’s look at other reasons why you should learn German:

 

Meet and get to know significant number of people around the world

German is the largest language in Europe in terms of native speakers. German is official language in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg and Liechtenstein. And it is the native language of a significant portion of the population in the Netherlands, Denmark, the Czech Republic, Russia, Romania, northern Italy, eastern France and parts of Poland as well as in other parts of Europe and even Brazil!

Besides, in addition to the 120 million native German speakers around the globe, German is the 3rd most popular foreign language taught worldwide.

Can you imagine how many people you can meet by learning German? It’s beyond our comprehension!

 

Enhance your travel experience

autriaGerman is an official language in 5 countries and spoken widely across Europe. These countries offer some of the greatest natural and cultural experiences for travellers across the globe. From German beer or Christmas markets to skiing resorts in Austria and Switzerland to the most well known tulip festival in the world taking place just outside Amsterdam. By speaking German you can expect to meet people and get the insiders’ tips on the best local restaurants, hidden coffee places and sights off the beaten track.

In addition to that, Germans are the most frequent travellers in the world! With nearly 6 weeks of holidays a year and substantial disposable income, it is natural that they spend their holidays abroad. So with German you can expect not to only get better insights into hidden jams while travelling, but also meet some great travel buddies.

 

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Doing business with Germany

German efficiency is well reflected in the strength of its economy. Germany is the 4th strongest economy in the world and is comparable to that of all the world’s Spanish-speaking countries combined! Can you imagine?

Germany is also the 3rd largest exporter in the world. From cars to electronic products, from chemical goods to pharmaceuticals and food products German has been known throughout ages for it’s quality products. “Made in Germany” sign stands for premium quality and durability.

So it is more than natural that whatever business you are in sooner or later you will come across German colleagues or companies that you want to work with and knowing German will be largely advantageous.

Also, let’s not forget that Switzerland has one of the highest living standards in the world and is largely populated with Germans.  

 

DE cultureExploring German culture & science

We’ve all heard such big names like Mozart, Beethoven, Scorpions, Paul Van Dyk or Scooter – to name a few big names from music scene only. Throughout ages German philosophers, writers, painters, musicians, composers and other artists have been influencing Western society in many ways. Even today 18% of the world’s books are published in German.

German is the second most commonly used scientific language. Germany is the third largest contributor to research and development and offers research fellowships to scientists from abroad.

 

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Whatever your reason – learning German simply matters today!

Jump on our 30 DAYs German Challenge to find FUN in learning the largest language in Europe!

Why learn Russian?

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It is no secret that popularity of Russian language has declined over the last couple decades. One of the reasons behind that is obviously a geopolitical situation. However let’s leave the politics aside and look at why you should choose to invest your time in learning one of the most phonetic languages today.

 

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The boring reason – NUMBERS

Russian is:

  • The 8th most spoken language in the world by number of native speakers with 144 million native speakers in Russia and 30 million more across the globe including Ukraine, the US, Germany, Canada, Brazil and many more.
  • The 5th most spoken language by total number of speakers with more than 270 million people speaking Russian across the globe.
  • One of the six official languages of the United Nations.
  • Most geographically widespread language of Eurasia.
  • Most widely spoken Slavic language.
  • One of the official languages in space.

 

The serious reason – JOB OPPORTUNITIES

It all starts in the university. Florida State University claims that “students who study Russian have a high rate of acceptance for graduate study in law school, business school, medical school, and other professional programs.”

Being able to speak Russian can open a lot of doors for you in your far away based non Russian job. The truth is that Russia has an abundance of natural resources and raw materials and thus West and East alike always wants to do business with Russia. Being able to speak Russian could easily become your competitive advantage and get you in a position that otherwise would be possible in a much longer period of time.

More importantly, going to Russia on a business trip will put you in a totally different place if you can speak at least a bit of the language. Respect and invitations to close circles comes as a given so we’re not even touching on that. But have you seen examples of a business negotiations where a non-English speaker users a translator and thus has more time to think about their next moves? Imagine that you would be able to understand your Russian counterparts before a translation!

 

taigaThe fun reason – TRAVEL

Russia occupies a vast territory across Eurasia and is the largest country in the world. There are 23 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Russia, 40 UNESCO biosphere reserves, 41national parks and 101 nature reserves. Russia is home for Mount Elbrus – the highest point in both Russia and Europe, the world’s deepest, purest and oldest bodies of fresh water – Lake Baikal, taiga, spectacular beaches, wildlife and unexplored places. Major tourist routes in Russia include a journey around the Golden Ring of ancient cities, cruises on the big rivers like the Volga, and long journeys on the famous Trans-Siberian Railway.

And if it’s not enough – speaking Russian can almost certainly help you to get around across the Central and Eastern Europe including Baltic countries. Plus, Russia will be hosting the 2018 Fifa World Cup!

 

balley-221214-2The cultural reasons – CLASSICS

Not many countries in the world can boast of such cultural heritage as Russia. It’s a homeland to some of the world’s most prominent writers, musicians, composers, ballet dances, theater directors and many other artists who throughout ages have influenced or set trends in the respective artistic areas. Works of Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Chaliapin, Tchaikovsky, Anna Pavlova, or Rudolf Nureyev are classics with no substitutes even today. You can obviously find translations of these works, however it will be nothing like enjoying Dostoevsky in Russian.

On top of that, life in Russia is different due to it’s distinctive customs and traditions. Everything from upbringing of children to family values to friends and relationships has its own flavor in Russia. Being able to speak Russian is the only way to taste that flavor and really understand the Russians.

 

The social reason – PEOPLE

Naturally, the easiest way to meet people is to know their language. It’s even more the case in Russia. With only 5.5% of people being able to speak English, you know that you can’t expect to fall back on English with Russians. Also, contrary to many’s believe Russians are very warm and welcoming people, that is if you are able to communicate at least a bit.

In addition, based on Wikipedia Russian is the second most spread language after English on the Internet. That is a lot of people to meet with just one language.

 

chania-crete-wedding-photographer_0056The romantic reason – SECOND HALF

With more than 30 million Russians living abroad it is very likely that sooner or later your paths will cross. And who knows, with the reputation of Russian women as wonderful hosts who place great importance on family values, this way turn into a romantic relationship. In which case speaking the language will help you to communicate and understand them more fully.

 

Whatever the reason – you will never regret being able to speak Russian!

And although it might be challenging at times, the rewards are greater than the investment.

Check out our 30DAYs Russian Challenge for an easy way to learn Russian.

A DAY BLIU BLIU WENT SOCIAL!

Bliu Bliu Social Language Wall

 

Today is a special special SPECIAL day for Bliu Bliu! Today we want to announce something that we’ve been working on for more than 6 months now.

Today is a day Bliu Bliu becomes truly social!

From now on you will be able to:

  • Not to only listen to and read in your target language, but also apply it in practice on Bliu Bliu!
  • Chat to other Bliubliuers learning the same language as you in real time!
  • Find learning buddies and make friends from across the globe!
  • Ask questions, discuss interesting topics, correct your mistakes all from one place that is Bliu Bliu!

From now on every language on Bliu Bliu has a Language Wall – a social space where you can communicate in the relevant language amongst yourself for ever more efficient language learning process!

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We are over the moon and we hope you will enjoy our Language Wall too!

You can find a link to the Language Wall in your Bliu Bliu side bar:

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Explore it!

Share it!

And above all – use it to progress your language skills!

A small print from us – Language Wall is still a work in progress. We decided that adding features to a live Wall will be better as we will be able to listen to your feedback and add what’s most important to you first. So please bear with us while we introduce personal one on one chats, topic charts, search and many more!

 

Go to bliubliu.com to see for your self!

 

Making Bliu Bliu home for your language learning!

 

Truly yours, Bliu Bliu Team

 

Join 30DAYs Russian Challenge on the 11th of January!

 

Vadim says: 

The complexity of Russian language gives one a remarkable possibility to express his or her feelings, thoughts, emotions in a way more rich and colorful way.

And we can assure you he’s not only proud of Russian languages. Being able to speak and understand Russian, we could not agree more!

Join Vadim and other students on the 11th of January in 30DAYs Russian Challenge for exceptional way to learn Russian!

See you on the Challenge,

Bliu Bliu Team & Vadim

30DAYS Spanish Challenge – starts next Monday!

spanish-backgroundHola amigos,

I am Andres and I born and raised in sunny Venezuela, afterwards I lived four years in Spain, and currently reside in Berlin. Aspiring physicist and all-around dork, I enjoy talking about any topic, when the people involved are passionate. Climate change, inequality, justice, and education are all very important challenges in my world-view. For me empathy, dedication, and informed choices are essential to make the best out of any situation . I believe in a world where art and knowledge are cherished and shared, so I strive to be a better and more effective teacher: “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough”!Photo on 01-12-15 at 15.21

I will be your HOST in 30DAYS Spanish Challenge! Don’t wait anything and join the Challenge!

Bliu Bliu Challenge is fun and effective way to learn a language! It helps you to build a habit of practising a language on a daily basis, motivates you to do it at least 10 minutes a day, introduces you to other students who will help you in a progress, helps you to monitor your own progress and keeps you interested and entertained!

 

30DAYS SPANISH CHALLENGE STARTS ON THE 11TH OF JANUARY!

 

Hurry up and I see you on 11th January!

Andres & Bliu Bliu Team

 

30DAYS French Challenge – starts in a week!

French

Bonsoir mes amis,

Je suis Kevin et je vous invite à Bliu Bliu 30 jours défi!

Bliu Bliu Challenge is all about learning a language without studying it! So it is fun, social, interesting and above all very effective! It can be described with the following equation:

Classroom learning experience  grammar boring content fair of making mistakes time and space constrains + online + fun people + amazing host + freedom to learn whenever and wherever you choose to + motivation system to keep you interested and engaged = Bliu Bliu 30DAYs French Challenge!

Are you in yet?

30DAYS FRENCH CHALLENGE STARTS ON THE 11TH OF JANUARY!

Hurry up and join now!

 

KevinKevin: “Hi everyone! My name is Kevin Laurier. I am a language collector and aspiring nomad, born in Québec, the French-speaking part of Canada. I first came to Bliu-Bliu to learn Lithuanian, the mother tongue of a friend I encountered during an epic travel to Europe.

I will be your host for the French challenge. Alongside the lessons, I will share with you videos of conversations with friends who are learning French as a foreign language to showcase their different proficiency levels, I will also show you the pecularities of the Quebec dialect, which has many differences with respect to the French spoken in France..

Have fun! Feel free to ask me any questions or make suggestions!”

 

See you on the 11th of January!

Kevin and Bliu Bliu Team

Have you made your New Year’s Resolutions yet?

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Making New Year’s Resolutions date back to Babylonians and Romans who at the start of each year made promises to gods. According to Cambridge Dictionaries Online A New Year’s Resolution is “a promise that you make to yourself to start doing something good or stop doing something bad on the first ​day of the year”. This year however, we had a full weekend to reflect on 2015 and set ourselves goals for 2016.

“The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you don’t want to stay where you are” – J. P. Morgan.

Millions have made their New Year’s Resolutions this weekend and millions will catch up on that over the coming week. However, how many of those millions will actually stick to their plans to get fit, to join gym and eat healthier, to have a better life – work balance, to read more, to lie less and so on? Not that many, in fact only 8% are successful in achieving their resolutions.

 

So why do we go over an exercise of making New Year’s Resolutions and failing to keep up with them year after year after year?

 

There is lots of literature and research on why only 8% follow through with their resolutions. In summary, here are 5 main reasons that all tie in together very nicely:

 

Postcards2CardsNewYearsResolution1915Setting unrealistic and unmeasurable goals. As Harvey MacKay has said – “A dream is just a dream. A goal is a dream with a plan and a deadline.” So if you really want to commit to your resolution, have a detailed plan of action, set yourself key milestones that will lead you to the main goal, think about how you will measure it and think about the deadline!  

smoking

“Should do” vs really want or will do. Don’t waste your time on making resolutions that only seem like a good thing to do. If you know that you should stop smoking, but you actually enjoy smoking, don’t even bother. We can only achieve resolutions that are meaningful to us and we will do everything we can to commit to them.

multitasking

Too many resolutions. Changing behaviour is an especially challenging and difficult task. It takes time. It takes hard effort and above all it takes sacrifice. So don’t aim for achieving too many resolutions. Quality over quantity. Choose what is most important to you and you are most passionate about and go for it at full force!

Wanting to change is not enough, you need to make it stick. You have to find someone who will motivate you, who will help you, who will monitor your progress, who will keep you accountable and most importantly – help you to build a habit of moving towards your resolution.

goal list

Forgetting about the resolutions. If we’re not serious about our aims, naturally we forget them. If, however, we do want to achieve something this year, we should write it down, make it visible, repeat it, think about it and revisit it throughout the year. In other words – live it!

 

And if your New Year’s resolution is about learning a new language, Bliu Bliu is the right place to make sure you achieve your resolution!

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Our special 30DAYs language Challenge program is designed to:

  • Help you build a habit of practicing a language on a daily basis
  • Motivate you to practice at least for 10 minutes a day
  • Introduce you to other students who will help you progress
  • Help you monitor your progress
  • Give you a tutor who will keep you accountable
  • Give you lots of fun so you don’t get bored and language learning becomes something that you really want and not only should do

JOIN A 30 DAYs LANGUAGE CHALLENGE TO FINALLY ACHIEVE YOUR RESOLUTION TO LEARN A LANGUAGE!

 

Our Christmas Miracle

Challenge hosts

The Christmas is over and it’s almost time for another great celebration! Before we go into the New Year’s Eve celebration we wanted to share our Christmas miracle with you, our beloved Bliubiuers.

You have probably already heard about Bliu Bliu 30 DAYs language Challenge. It’s a fast track language acquisition program that aims to teach you a language in a unique way and most importantly get you into a habit of practicing your target language on a daily basis. Read more about the methodology behind the 30 DAYs language Challenge here.

OUR CHRISTMAS MIRACLE

The most important component of a successful 30DAYs language Challenge is a language HOST. A native speaker who is there to motivate you, to advise you on your mistakes, to organise weekly chats ups and talk to you while making language learning a fun and engaging experience. As hosts determine the success of the whole course, we’ve invested lots of time and effort in finding only the best HOSTS!

And guess what? Santa has really read our letters this year and he brought to us 7 incredible personalities who will be looking after your language acquisition in 2016! Meet them all:

30DAYs Russian Challenge – Vadim

30DAYs French Challenge – Kevin

30DAYs Spanish Challenge – Andres

30DAYs German Challenge – Marco & Martin

30DAYs Lithuanian Challenge – Odeta 

30DAYs Italian Challenge – Claudio

We are super excited to gather a team of such great people who are eager to help you learn and experience a language of your choice!

All the hosts hope to meet you on the 11th of January!

Lots of love,

Bliu Bliu Team and the HOSTS