The English language has a reputation of being difficult to learn and most people think this title is well-deserved. The original form of English, which existed centuries ago has been influenced as the modern language now includes a mixture of words from a variety of languages. Apart from that, there have also been phonological changes, which may not have altered the spellings of the words, but have changed their pronunciation. It is common to see people becoming frustrated when they are trying to learn English, but that doesn’t mean you should be discouraged. It is possible for you to learn English and speak it well as there are lots of people who succeed in this endeavor.
To make this task easier, here are a few things you should do:
Choose your Dialect
If you decide to take classes, the specific dialect of the English language will be chosen for you by the instructor, but you have the option of choosing a dialect when you are learning on your own. You can choose from South African, New Zealand, British, Australian, Irish, Canadian and American. However, you will be able to find the most resources for the British and American versions, especially if you don’t live in any one of the countries where the dialects are used. For instance, if you live in the US, you might not be able to find books for learning Australian English unless you do considerable research. Just make sure you choose a single dialect rather than mixing them up or else you will not learn consistent spelling, punctuation and grammar.
Choose your Method
A combination of methods are used by most people when they attempt to learn English and the most common one is studying books. A single book or several books can be used and even an audio program. An expert from Communicate School of English in Manchester writes, “You should not just stick to one method because of the complexity of the English language. Books are good for spellings, but you need to have an audio program because the pronunciation can vary from the spellings in various instances“. Your comprehension and pronunciation can improve with an audio component. You can find English videos in the dialect you have chosen so you can understand the language better and do some practice.
There are some programs that only offer audio assistance. As they force you to listen and understand, they can prove to be a useful component. However, you will not get assistance with reading and spelling if you use only audio and both of these elements are essential for learning English. You need to have resources that cover writing, reading, listening, spelling and so on because the English language doesn’t have a one-to-one sound-letter correspondence.
The best way to get comfortable in writing and speaking English is conversation. The problem with classes is that they are only focused on the sentences written in books. The best way to become fluent is to get a language exchange partner or go to study abroad. You will be able to learn English quickly in this way.