8 incredible ways to learn something new every day

Get out there and do it.


When we were kids, we'd do anything to get out of school. Our parents told us that education was important therefore we did it; we sat through probability in Year 8 Maths and the Poems From Other Cultures anthology in GCSE English. We somehow scraped that B in Biology A-Level.

But once we arrived at uni and realised we were Actual Official Adults™, the way we thought about learning started to change. We realised that acquiring new skills and information of our own accord was actually pretty... fulfilling.

The glorious thing about being an adult is that you can do whatever you want. You can have a shot at learning code, even if you're an art teacher. An economics student can learn to blow glass.

Don't let your preconceptions hold you back. Even if you're strapped for time, there are several ways to learn something truly awesome every day.

  1. 1 Take the Sketch a Day challenge
    A doodle a day keeps the boredom away
    Source: Deviant Art

    This one's great if you're arty, but great if you're not, too.

    When we draw stuff we often get caught up in making something look perfect or anatomically correct, but where's the fun in that?

    By trying to do a sketch a day you'll find your skills improving and you'll be pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, too.

    Carry a little sketchbook with you everywhere you go and try drawing something in front of you - or imaginary - every day.

  2. 2 Try Code Academy
    Code Academy screenshot
    Source: Code Academy

    Before your negative associations with coding, ICT and computing come flooding in, hear this: coding is one of the most valuable skills you can have nowadays.

    What's more, it's actually very satisfying. You're truly building something from scratch and tinkering with it to get it to work.

    Code Academy is a free educational resource that offers coding classes in ten different coding languages.

    With sections such as 'Make a Website' and 'Learn Java', it's pretty straightforward.

  3. 3 Start a blog
    Source: Gmail

    Many of us write for our own enjoyment, but one mustn't forget that writing's a proper skill that you can hone and build upon too.

    Sure, online or real-life writing classes can be incredibly useful, but the simplest way of getting better at writing is practice.

    A bit like sketching, try doing a post a day. You'll find yourself relaxing and becoming more creative the more you practice.

    Sign up to a blogging platform such as WordPress or Tumblr to get started.

  4. 4 Listen to more podcasts
    child listening to headphones
    Source: timlewisnm

    If you're not a podcaster already, it can feel like the last thing on your to-do list.

    But don't underestimate how easy they are to squeeze into a busy routine. Instead of scraping the YouTube bucket for songs to listen to on your commute, one podcast could keep you busy for the whole journey.

    Ones with maximum learning and interestingness include Stuff You Should Know, Ted Talks and Radiolab.

  5. 5 Sign up to Highbrow
    Highbrow website
    Source: Highbrow

    Highbrow is perfect for those of us without much time on our hands - sign up to one of its 10-day courses, and it'll email you a five-minute lesson to do daily.

    These cover various topics, from the secrets of body language to the basics of English writing. Importantly, it's also free.

  6. 6 Try Supercook
    Source: Supercook

    We'd all love to be better at cooking, or rather, love to have the motivation to go shopping for ingredients.

    Supercook is a good way to get yourself cooking a new recipe even if you're lazy, because it'll tell you what to make based on ingredients already in your kitchen.

    So once again, you can boost those culinary skills without having to leave the house.

  7. 7 Take a Sporcle quiz

    If you're a notorious procrastinator, you may as well be productive in the process.

    Sporcle is a great trivia and quiz website that covers everything from geography to pop culture, and feels way more like 'fun time' than 'work time'.

    If you've got a spare ten minutes and catch yourself scrolling through your Facebook feed, try naming countries of the Americas from A to Z instead.

    If you become determined enough, you'll know them all in a jiffy.

  8. 8 Try Duolingo
    Source: Duolingo

    Regret messing about in Year 9 Spanish?

    Duolingo helps you learn a language for free in weeny bite-size sessions. Seriously - some sessions take just five minutes.

    It's not just a decision between learning French and Spanish, either - the site has many, many languages to choose from.

    Thinking of doing a postgraduate degree? There’s still time to apply to start this autumn.

    Feature image: Warner Bros