Learning a foreign language like English is always a tough challenge for the budding learners. Many believe that a foreign language can be mastered only by living in a foreign country, by making friends with the native speakers and by cramming boring grammar principles. But in fact, anyone can learn English by following some simple basic tips that will not only make learning easier but also enjoyable.
1. Identify your preferred learning technique
Everyone has their own way of learning. A learner might be comfortable with a particular learning technique. This particular technique becomes their preferred way of learning. The first and foremost thing while learning English is to identify one’s preferred way of learning. You might find it interesting to learn through visuals or a thematic approach, or you may even learn better by listening to English news and songs if you prefer to take a more auditory method. In short, try to identify the particular path you would like to take in your journey to learning that will help you to learn quickly and easily. One such technique which is useful for all learners is interaction in English. Try to interact in English as much as possible. Speak in English with your friends, siblings, parents and teachers. Make it a habit to only talk in English. Initially, you will find it difficult to converse but the key is to continue despite all the problems. Once you get the hang of it, things will start falling into places and you will gradually get into the groove.
2. Make reading a daily ritual
Read a newspaper every day. It will not only improve your knowledge of the language but will also keep you abreast with all the current affairs and issues. Even if you do not read the entire newspaper, reading the editorial page is a must as this is the page that showcases the best of writing skills, introduces high quality vocabulary and improves the reader’s English tremendously. Reading books, magazines and journals is also a great way to improve the flow of English. This entire exercise will also improve your grammar greatly.
3. Build your vocabulary
Building a decent vocabulary is an integral part of perfecting a language. There are several ways to learn fresh words every day. Use flash cards or take the help of small notes with words and their meanings scribbled on them. Pin these notes and cards in your room or around your house and take a look at them whenever possible. The more you see the words, the more they get etched in your memory. Start reading a dictionary for new words and their meanings. You may also make it a habit to carry a small pocket dictionary everywhere, so that you can manage to pull it out as soon as you come across an unknown word.
4. Refresh your vocabulary by using it in your daily conversation
The whole purpose of learning fresh words is to keep them alive and active after they have been learnt. This can only be done by using them in your day to day conversations. Try to recall and use the freshly learnt words according to the appropriate contexts. Do not try to fit in the words just to use them but do try to think of ways to place them effectively. This will enhance memorizing and will in turn give them permanent space in your stock of words.
5. Don’t just learn single words; idioms, proverbs and collocations are also necessary
Learning new words is the first step to improve English vocabulary, but it is equally important to widen the realm of your expressions. English language is full of idioms, proverbs, collocations and the like. All of these help to broaden your boundaries of describing a situation and thus facilitates expression.
6. Practice public speaking
By now you must have already started to interact with everyone in English. When you feel comfortable, take it a step ahead by practicing public speaking. Agreed that this is extremely intimidating and scary, but the very purpose of the activity to break even the last few shackles of fears and nervousness. Play public speaking games by selecting different topics and giving short speeches on them. This will not only be an interesting activity in developing your knowledge of English but will also enhance your personality by manifolds.
7. Say goodbye to fear and say hello to motivation
It is natural of a learner to feel nervous and scared of making mistakes. But don’t let your fears win over you. Remember that it is absolutely fine to make mistakes as you are learning a foreign language. All of us make mistakes through the process of learning something new. So it is nothing to feel intimidated of. Try to feel relaxed and motivated to learn this immensely rich and potentially sound language. Follow all the steps mentioned above. Internet is full of infinite free resources. Use it for help and to gain more knowledge regarding English learning. With so much of help around, you are bound to get better with time. When you do, don’t forget to reward yourself!