All of us occasionally have doubts over correct vocabulary, pronunciation, grammar etc. Many Indians strive to speak like British or American English. Worrying about all these issues, we often forget that our main emphasis should be on clear and concise communication rather than intimating others.
Learning is a lifelong process and English is no exception. Here are some handy tips to improvise on your English:
1. Read English magazines– Like books, if you can read two versions of the same magazine (Newsweek in your language and in English, for example), that could make understanding it much easier.
2. Watch the same film or TV episode over and over again– By doing so, you get to understand the foreign accent and pronunciation slowly and gradually. And one day you will start understanding these films in one go.
Also you may not know the meaning of some words but you can figure out its meaning from the context or you may look into the dictionary. It is not possible to know the meaning of every word.
3. Keep a list of vocabulary- Even if you don’t often find time to go though your vocab list and it keeps on building up, just the act of choosing which words you need to learn today and trying to use it several times in the day would help you memorize its meaning and usage. Linguists suggest that o know a word fully, we must use it atleast seven times in a day. So just experiment it.
4. Go through your vocab list several times every day– Keep a list of words you have learned so far and keep this list handy so as to recall the words whenever and wherever possible. And don’t just memorize them but try to use them then and there or create a situation to use them.
5. Keep a diary in English. This is a popular method of making sure you use English everyday for people who don’t often speak English and can’t think of things to write about. The fact that you are writing about real things that have happened to you means that any words you look up in the dictionary will be vocabulary that is useful for you and easy to learn.
6. Online chat– For people who don’t have the chance to speak English is online chat, as you have to think and respond quickly.
7. Read an English language newspaper– Subscribe for some good daily English newspaper. Now start reading the newspaper and as you go through it, keep a dictionary along with you to look for the meaning of unknown words. And again don’t forget to write these words in your vocab-list.
8. Record your own voice. For people who don’t have much or any correction of pronunciation from a teacher, recording yourself and listening to it makes it easier to hear whether you are really making the English sounds that you are trying to or not. Involve a friend if possible.
Also, fluency is often confused with speed whereas they both are different. Slowing your speaking pace may improve your clarity.
9. Use an English-English dictionary. Trying to use a bilingual dictionary less. Switching to a monolingual one can help you to stop translating in you head when you are speaking or listening, and other useful English vocabulary can come up.
10. Join some institute, debate club or some organization where you get opportunities to speak in English and where you also have people to correct you.
A public speaking course would help you the best as these courses have many participant and many activities are organized in such courses where you have to express yourself.
There are several clear advantages to using public speaking in learning a language. These are: practice with all four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing), improved learning, and development of critical thinking skills.
Advantage 1: Public speaking gives opportunities to practice all four language skills.
Presentation and debate tasks utilize and strengthen listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills. There is a strong focus on speaking as your language is vital in delivering a clear, coherent speech. Peer evaluation promotes careful listening, and is meaningful during debates if participants are required to question or respond to their classmates’ speeches. Additionally, students will develop strong reading and writing skills during task preparation.
Advantage 2: Public speaking promotes learning.
Presentations are an ideal way for students to display their knowledge. Through their presentations, students are given the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned. This type of task pushes students to take on a teaching role by explaining their topic to the class.
Advantage 3: Public speaking develops critical thinking skills.
Presentation and debate tasks promote a variety of critical thinking skills in addition to specific language skills. Students are encouraged to question, develop and assess solutions to problems, compare and contrast.
Public speaking tasks require students to conduct research and develop support for their arguments. Once the students have identified a topic of interest, they may carry out an extensive search of materials using library and online search tools. Public meetings, newspapers, interviews, and narratives are great sources of evidence for both presentations and debates. The more the students try to gather information on their topic, the more get in touch with the outside world thus helping to interact with people and making them more confident.
Once they have gathered enough information, the students now start organizing it to make their presentation the best one.
These three advantages accompany both presentations and debates. Debates require more planning and involvement than presentations. In preparing for a debate, students practice reading and note-taking skills, and construct written arguments. Students will gain confidence in speaking and will learn to express themselves in clear and articulate ways.
Public speaking tasks are an easy way to enhance language learning. As people participate in lively presentations and debates, they develop increased motivation. They develop such skills through public speaking that can effectively transfer to future learning and employment contexts. Public speaking empowers students by allowing them to take charge of their own learning and to communicate their knowledge to others in authentic ways.
At ‘Anurag Aggarwal Institute of Public Speaking’ you are provided training in Public Speaking, Personality Development , Presentation Skills and Communication Skills. In this course you will be trained in all the above mentioned things and others that are needed to have outstanding communication skills. For more details on the course, visit www.anuragaggarwal.com
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