The ideal way of studying a language hasn’t been found yet, but here are some advice on how you should study a language in order to get on fluency and build self-confidence. We all know that everyone learns differently but here are some methods you can use. If you’re diligent and persevere to them, I assure you the results won’t miss.
Vocabulary is the foundation of any language. It is well-known that we learn faster if we repeat words and expressions. We also need to be constant and study vocabulary over the whole week. It’s less boring if you learn the words and phrases in the context and use them as soon as possible in your speaking practice. That way you won’t forget them. Learn frequent vocabulary (everyday English) and/or vocabulary you need for your job or studies.
Grammar is the structure which keeps vocabulary in order. Some of you may feel that grammar is boring or difficult to understand and avoid learning it. You should start from easier stuff and try not to skip any essential lessons; eventually, you’ll be able to understand grammar rules which are more complex and do not exist in your native language. Print yourself a practice worksheet with a grammar unit and go through it. Check your answers and do it again in a day or two. In due course of time, you’ll notice that your speech is much more meaningful and complex and confident; moreover, you’ll struggle less to say things you have in mind.
You should try and read (adapted?) books written in English without using a dictionary. You may not understand everything as if you read it in your native language. However, this practice is important because it enables you to ‘shift your mind’ to another language even though you understand only 50 or 70 percent of the text. Practice this and you’ll realise that you speak with ease although you don’t understand where your sentences come from! Sooner than you expect, you’ll become bilingual. Wouldn’t that be great?
Every now and then watch films and TV series without subtitles. It will add to your ‘sense of language’ just like the reading practice. Moreover, you’ll become aware of the intonation and sentence stress, which is most probably different than in your native language. This practice will help you hear better and you’ll definitely stop complaining about actors speaking too fast.
It may sound unimportant but writing can add a great deal to your language skills. You can try to write an email, an essay or rewrite another text. It will definitely improve your spelling, especially if you write with a spelling checker.
Do you know a native speaker to talk to in English? Don’t worry about that; you can try talking to yourself in front of the mirror when nobody’s watching! Even better, you can talk to your friends, family, and colleagues. Try to complete your sentences and don’t worry about making mistakes. Remember that fluency comes where anxiety goes!