As a universal language, we all want to have better English communication skills. These tips will help you to improve your English skills.
Without knowledge of English, it can be impossible to communicate across borders and to function effectively in this globalized world. Mastery in this language allows you to share your opinions and thoughts with others effectively and convincingly.
However, for non-English speakers, mastering the language can take a lot of time to improve — physically, mentally.
Even if you already memorized a whole dictionary, or know every grammatical rule, holding conversations in English, you’ll still find yourself stammering and experience fear of expressing yourself.
However, if you want and are really determined to learn and master the English language, then here are simple tips on how you can improve your English.
1. First, Listen!
Probably the best way for you to study the language and to improve your skills is to open your ears and listen more carefully.
Turn on the TV and develop a routine of watching English news, films, or documentaries.
Remember, this is actually a part of the learning process. So, you will need to pay attention to how people converse in the movie, how the information is expressed.
Meanwhile, watching an English news channel allows you to learn how to speak articulately.
How does the newsreader articulate or pronounce each word?
Other than watching, you can also listen to English music. You can even sing-along in order to make you more comfortable with speaking.
2. Learning a New Word Everyday
Do not try to force yourself to memorize a whole page in the dictionary or even set a goal of learning 10 – 20 words a day. Instead, you only need to learn one. Make it a habit to have a “word of the day”.
Once you have learned the word, you can keep using it throughout the day in conversations with family and friends or even using it in your blog or diary. Do this, even if it sounds or feel awkward as “I’ve been lollygagging all day long.” (It means doing nothing, by the way).
Also, as you read a book or watch a movie when you hear or read something you’re not familiar with, get a dictionary right then and learn its meaning.
3. Conversing With Others
Holding conversations with a friend or a family member in English may be quite challenging and embarrassing. But, remember like any other thing, mastering the language comes with lots of practice and it is important not to feel embarrassed. Think of it as a way of improving yourself.
Carefully listening to others and responding with your thoughts clearly can take a lot of failed attempts. So, be patient.
Even experts were once an amateur taking effort, time and numerous shameless attempts just to get better.
It would be nice if you could converse with a native English speaker. When you do, make sure to observe how they construct their sentences and try to imitate them. Soon enough, you should become more comfortable and acquainted, finding your own style of speaking.
4. Slow Down a Bit
Learning should be taken slowly. Especially if you are still at the first stage of learning the English language.
Being a fluent speaker with your mother tongue does not mean that you can expect the same speaking a foreign language.
So, speaking or holding a conversation in a foreign language, take a deep breath and start speaking slowly. No one will hold this against you. I mean, even great public speakers tend to speak slowly but clearly just to get their message through their audience.
5. Record Yourself
This is how it should sound. But, does it sound the same when you do it? Don’t know? Then get your phone and record yourself. Listen. From there, you should have better insight on how you sound and find any problems.
At first, listening to your voice may be awful and tend to make you feel extremely self-conscious, however, it goes away with time.
6. Start Writing
Visit the park or a café nearby. Describe everything you see. Doing so helps expand your vocabulary as well as improving your English writing skills.
Whether you’re a tech junkie or love food, starting a blog and writing about your passion can improve your English skills.
Not only that, but you can also learn while earning. There are individuals out there, particularly students, who will pay you for an essay. You can try this with websites like topessayservices.com or speedypaper.com.
7. Take a Class
Enroll in that online English class. Now, if you’re already enrolled in one, then supplement it with another physical class that has a much different style.
If you’re in a speaking online class, supplement with a writing class. Taking a group class? Enroll in a 1-on-1 class. Worried about your pronunciation? Go for accent-reduction classes. Whatever you choose, there are lots of online English classes out there that should help you master your skills, it’s worth checking out Perfectly Spoken for advanced courses.
Remember, practicing different skills in different environments is one of the quickest ways to improve.
8. Keep Speaking and Practicing Without Fear of Mistakes
This is where most people stumble. Because of their lack of confidence, they tend to avoid speaking in English because of fear that they may say the wrong word or realize that their grammar is skewed.
Do not be afraid. In order to improve, you will need to practice a lot and speak a lot. Every time you speak, do it in English. Whether you are ordering from McDonald’s, giving directions to a stranger or conversing among friends.
They may find you weird, but at least you get to practice and improve.
In addition, if you make a mistake, don’t try to avoid it and move on or ponder it for hours, thinking how awkward you might have sounded. If you wish to learn and master English, then you should acknowledge your mistakes, repeat the phrase or sentence and correct the errors.
With practice, your brain will correct itself and you will develop a habit of saying the phrase or word correctly over time.
In 2024 Speaking English is more important for work and travel than ever. Thankfully, online courses are improving all the time and there are lots of options to choose from. We’d recommend finding a course that offers a wide range of learning resources, including all of those outlined above. We’re particularly impressed with English Like A Native’s Online English Courses which include all of the learning methods outlined in this article. In particular, all of their courses provide access to the ELAN community where you can practice speaking with people all over the world and get support from teachers.