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Learning Skill
 

IMPROVE YOUR ENGLISH LEARNING SKILLS

Learning is a skill and it can be improved.

Your path to learning effectively is through knowing

  • yourself
  • your capacity to learn
  • processes you have successfully used in the past
  • your interest, and knowledge of what you wish to learn

Motivate yourself

If you are not motivated to learn English you will become frustrated and give up. Ask yourself the following questions, and be honest:-

  • Why do you need to learn/improve English?
  • Where will you need to use English?
  • What skills do you need to learn/improve? (Reading/Writing/Listening/Speaking)
  • How soon do you need to see results?
  • How much time can you afford to devote to learning English.
  • How much money can you afford to devote to learning English.
  • Do you have a plan or learning strategy?

Set yourself achievable goals

You know how much time you can dedicate to learning English, but a short time each day will produce better, longer-term results than a full day on the weekend and then nothing for two weeks.

Joining a short intensive course could produce better results than joining a course that takes place once a week for six months.

Here are some goals you could set yourself:-

  • Join an English course (and attend regularly).
  • Do your homework.
  • Read a book a month.
  • Learn a new word every day.
  • Visit an English speaking forum every day.
  • Read a news article on the net every day.
  • Do 10 minutes listening practice every day.
  • Watch an English film at least once a month.
  • Follow a soap, comedy or radio or TV drama.

A good way to meet your goals is to establish a system of rewards and punishments.

Decide on a reward you will give yourself for fulfilling your goals for a month.

  • A bottle of your favourite drink
  • A meal out / or a nice meal at home
  • A new outfit
  • A manicure or massage

Understanding how you learn best may also help you.

There are different ways to learn. Find out what kind of learner you are in order to better understand how to learn more effectively..

The visual learner

Do you need to see your teacher during lessons in order to fully understand the content of a lesson?

Do you prefer to sit at the front of the classroom to avoid visual obstructions (e.g. people's heads)?

Do you think in pictures and learn best from visual displays including: diagrams, illustrated text books, overhead transparencies, videos, flipcharts and hand-outs? 

During a lecture or classroom discussion, do you prefer to take detailed notes to absorb the information?

!Learning Tip - you may benefit from taking part in traditional English lessons, but maybe private lessons would be better.

The auditory learner

Do you learn best through verbal lectures, discussions, talking things through and listening to what others have to say?

Do you interpret the underlying meanings of speech through listening to tone of voice, pitch, speed and other nuances?

Does written information have little meaning until you hear it?

!Learning Tip - you may benefit from listening to the radio or listening to text as you read it. You could try reading text aloud and using a tape recorder to play it back to yourself.

The Tactile/Kinesthetic learner

Do you learn best through a hands-on approach, actively exploring the physical world around you?

Do you find it hard to sit still for long periods?

Do you become distracted easily?

!Learning Tip - you may benefit from taking an active part in role plays or drama activities.

Here's How:

    1-Remember that learning a language is a gradual process - it does not happen overnight.
    2-Define your learning objectives early: What do you want to learn and why?
    3-Make learning a habit. Try to learn something every day. It is much better to study (or read, or listen to English news, etc.) 10 minutes each day than to study for 2 hours once a week.
    4-Remember to make learning a habit! If you study each day for 10 minutes English will be constantly in your head. If you study once a week, English will not be as present in your mind.
    5-Choose your materials well. You will need reading, grammar, writing, speaking and listening materials
    6-Vary your learning routine. It is best to do different things each day to help keep the various relationships between each area active. In other words, don't just study grammar.
    7-Find friends to study and speak with. Learning English together can be very encouraging.
    8-Choose listening and reading materials that relate to what you are interested in. Being interested in the subject will make learning more enjoyable - thus more effective.
    9-Relate grammar to practical usage. Grammar by itself does not help you USE the language. You should practice what you are learning by employing it actively.
    10-Move your mouth! Understanding something doesn't mean the muscles of your mouth can produce the sounds. Practice speaking what you are learning aloud. It may seem strange, but it is very effective.
    11-Be patient with yourself. Remember learning is a process - speaking a language well takes time. It is not a computer that is either on or off!
    12-Communicate! There is nothing like communicating in English and being successful. Grammar exercises are good - having your friend on the other side of the world understand your email is fantastic!
    13-Use the Internet. The Internet is the most exciting, unlimited English resource that anyone could imagine and it is right at your finger tips.

Tips:

Remember that English learning is a Process Be patient with yourself. Practice, practice, practice

 
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