How to Improve your English
Here you can find suggestions on how to improve your English. There are many ways to practice and learn to speak and write fluently in English.
Learning by Listening
English words are written in a strange way and if you are not native it is almost impossible to enunciate them in English correctly. A simple example is this; a native Spanish speaker when reading the word “hotel” without having ever listened the correct pronunciation, will enunciate the word “otel” since in the Spanish language the letter “h” remains silent when is the first letter of the word.
Learning by listening is more likely for you to adapt the correct pronunciation and help you speak fluently like a native speaker.
Watch movies and series in English.
One of the things I suggest my students to do in order to improve their fluency and understanding of the English language is to watch movies and series in English. Preferably without subtitles for more advanced students. Using subtitles is okay too.
My suggestions are more British oriented; You could watch the “Mondy Python” movies, “Fawlty Towers” series and “The Black Adder“ series – the actor Rowan Atkinson has, in my opinion, one of the greatest British accents and pronunciations I have ever heard.
Listen and sing English songs
Listening to music is a fun and entertaining way to practice your English. Sing along with the singer and even if you don’t have the brilliant voice of Freddie Mercury, who cares? You are learning by having fun.
Learning by Reading
Reading books, ebooks or articles on the internet can help you enhance your vocabulary knowledge and understanding of what the author says.
Understanding becomes easier with this kind of learning since you can actually see the words and reread them as many times as you like and whenever you want you can pause and check in the dictionary a word you do not know.
Read books in English
There are a lot of books that are graded to levels, from A1 to C2. If you search the internet the keywords “Graded books for English learners“, you can find book publishers and order a book according to your level. I highly recommend to not start reading books that are for a higher level than the one you have, since you will be discouraged and you will give up on reading.
Learning by Speaking
Speaking is one of the important skills that most people practice less when learning a second language. Classroom teachers face this issue because there are a lot of students and little time available.
English learners can do a lot of things to practice by themselves.
Practice by speaking with friends or family members
Speak English with friends or family members – make an agreement to speak to each other in English for half an hour or one hour a day. How long or how many times a week is up to you.
Most importantly, don’t be afraid to make mistakes
Making mistakes while talking is perfectly normal. If you have doubts, think about your native language – if you are not a native English speaker. When speaking your native language you make mistakes right? I know I do. And, what do you do? You just correct yourself on the spot. Simple as that. So, when you speak English and you make mistakes, don’t forget to correct yourself.
Talk and record yourself.
This may sound silly, but it will help you realize how you can improve by repeating the recording several times till you feel happy with the results.
Learning by Writing
Writing might seem difficult but, once you have started then nothing can stop you.
Writing by hand strengthens the learning process. It teaches you how to correctly structure sentences and helps you organise your thoughts and forge creativity and new ideas.
Write a letter
There are services where you can find a pen pal. Pen pals are people who regularly write to each other, particularly via postal mail. Pen pals are usually strangers who exchange letters.
Even though letters seem to be something belonging to the past, imagine how happy you would feel if you received a handwritten letter instead of an email or message on your phone.
Write comments in English blogs
There are thousands of blogs and websites on the internet with articles where you can read and comment on them. Lots of people use them to expose their ideas on a certain topic or to explain things.
You can also commend this article if you wish. I would be happy to read what you have to say.