Learning a new language can be overwhelming, but it can be fun too. Here are 10 English tips you can use to improve your English today.
1. Read as much as you can
Read books, news, magazines, websites, and social media–anything you can get your hands on. By reading anything and everything, you’ll soak up new vocabulary, grammar points, and sentence structure all in one. If you’re a beginner, try books by Roald Dahl or websites like Breaking News English.
2. Listen to podcasts and radio in English
Boost your English listening skills by listening to podcasts and radio programs. This is a great way to learn intonation and word stress from native English speakers. If you’re looking for ways to make your English sound more natural, listening to podcasts is the way to go. Get started with these podcasts: Podcasts in English, Elementary Podcasts, and Better at English. For more advanced learners, try This American Life or Radio Lab.
3. Set goals
Why do you want to learn English? What skills do you want to focus on? Are you learning for school, work, or just for fun? These are all questions you should ask yourself as you prepare to learn English. For example, learning English for business purposes and learning English for traveling will have very different study plans and goals.
4. Practice, reading, writing, speaking, and listening
Focus on more than one skill! Be sure to practice reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Try writing new vocabulary words after reading them, or try speaking new phrases after listening to them.
5. Practice learning sounds
If you’re an English language beginner, practice learning sounds. With 44 sounds in the English language, learning English speaking and listening can seem difficult. Use phonemic charts to learn the sounds. By using this chart, you’ll learn pronunciation for vowels, double vowels, and consonants.
6. Play vocabulary games
Want to increase your English vocabulary and have fun too? Try playing these online vocabulary games. Vocabulary games are a great way to learn new words and challenge yourself. For more practice, write down every new word you learn, and use it in a sentence.
7. Watch movies and TV shows in English
Watching movies and TV in English is a fun way to learn informal phrases that you won’t find in textbooks. It’s also a great way of learning sounds and pronunciation from native speakers. Be sure to turn on the subtitles if you’re a beginner. If your English is intermediate or advanced, turn off the subtitles for a challenging listening exercise. Movies like “Toy Story,” “Finding Nemo,” and “Harry Potter” are great choices for beginners. For more advanced students, try “Ghostbusters,” “The Hunger Games,” and “Back to the Future.”
8. Talk to native English speakers
Boost your English speaking skills by talking to native speakers. Not only will you learn new vocabulary, but you’ll also learn words and phrases not used by textbooks or formal English courses. Try making a new friend online, talk with an English tutor, or try a language exchange app. HelloTalk, Bilingua, and HiNative all pair you with native English speakers whom you can text or send voice recordings to.
9. Keep a diary or journal in English
Keeping an English journal or diary is a perfect way to practice your writing skills. Write about anything: your feelings, your day, your family, your friends. Try writing your own stories in English and practice using new vocabulary words. After you finish writing, read your diary and edit it for mistakes.
10. Find a study partner
Are your friends or family studying English too? Make plans to study and learn English together! Having a study partner is a great way practice your English speaking skills. Try interviewing each other and roleplaying different scenarios. Here are some fun ideas for you and your partner: job interviews, debates, going to the store, going to the doctor, and talking to a neighbor.
Also, practicing English with a partner will hold you accountable to your goals–meaning you’ll be on your way to fluency in no time!