10 Ways To Improve Your English Language Skills

30/06/2017 By
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When we learn our native language, first we listen, then we speak, then we read and finally we write. Listening, speaking, reading and writing are the four language skills we need to develop for complete communication.

Listening and reading are receptive:  input, i.e. the exposure you have to authentic language in use. Speaking and writing are productive: output, i.e. the action of producing language as part of the process of second language learning.

To achieve these four basic language skills, you need to surround yourself with English: make English part of your life at home, at work, during your free time.

Read on to find tips that will help you overcome the difficulties you might be experiencing to improve your English skills.  

Expose yourself to the language as much as possible:

practice makes perfect, which means that if you want to improve a certain skill you have to practice it. As a beginner learner you will need to achieve all 4 language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing.

 

Listening:

It plays a very important part in learning any language. Effective listening ensures understanding and it helps improve accuracy when speaking , among other things. How can you improve your listening skills? By listening actively, i.e. paying attention not only on what is said, but also how it is said. So, listen:

1. To music –old or modern; the type you prefer, but pay attention to the lyrics. (sometimes reading the lyrics may help you understand the song)

2. To movies, TV shows, news, entertainments, the radio – try the classics. If you can watch DVD’s you can watch the movie several times. Watching with subtitles and then, when you feel more comfortable, without them. You can have English radio at home or on your mobile phone. Even if are not actually listening to it, your ears will be getting used to the sounds of the language.

3. Attend plays, exhibitions, talks, etc. in English organized by English speaking schools or communities.

Speaking:

It is often the hardest of the four language skills, but as soon as you can speak a little English there are lots of ways to improve quickly and have tons of fun.

4. Join voiced chats. Technology has advanced a lot in terms of social networks so, wherever you live, you’ll find a chat-room to join.
5. Talk and record yourself. This may sound funny, but it will help you realize how you can improve by repeating the recording several times till you feel happy with the results.
6. Talk to your classmates in English when you are not in class. You can even make a group to play games, have a meal or just chat together.

Reading:

It is a process of the brain and it takes time to develop: your mind has to attach meaning to the words, phrases and expressions represented by symbols, plus get to understand the grammar and structure of the language used in the passage to read. If you develop strong reading skills, it’ll be very helpful to your future. You can read:

7. Books in English and articles on the web. Maybe, books you have already read in your mother tongue or which have been turned into movies. Try to start with easy books, even children’s books and comics: The images will help you understand even if you don’t know all the words
8. Switch the operating system of your mobile phone, your PC or tablet into English. Associating a function with a certain word, will improve your vocabulary.

Diary

Writing:

Even though it may be intimidating to a lot of people, anyone can get used to writing with a little discipline and a willingness to learn.

9. Write down words or expressions you think useful with their meaning and examples. If you see them in sentences you will remember them better. You can use them if you keep a diary.
10. Write comments in English blogs. At present blogs are websites that resemble journals. Lots of people use them to expose their ideas on a certain topic or to explain things – from how to knit a scarf, to very complicated ones where technical or philosophical topics are dealt with. One common feature of all these blogs is that they are interactive: the readers can make comments or debate the ideas stated in the blog. Even if you are not a blog fan, you may find some that really encourage you to take part. So, just do it. You don’t need to be an expert to write a few sentences about what you think or feel about the content of the blog.

All the above mentioned tips can be reduced to just one: PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE!! Whatever learning style you have, whatever your native language is, the key to acquire and master a foreign language is PRACTICE it as much and as often as possible.

 

Why not practice your English language knowledge right now with our English Test?

 

50 thoughts on “10 Ways To Improve Your English Language Skills”

  • Oluniyi Olurankinse 21.03.18

    i find it difficult to speak good english speak in the public

    • parsa 25.09.18

      you can talk with your self in your home.and another way is paying attention to stress sylables

    • Mehrdad 05.10.18

      At first it may seen hArd but when you keep going on it seems easier tgan before. In speaking its verycritical that thinking in english. If you want to improve your thinking in english, buy a notebook and make a commitment to write about your ideas every night before sleeping.

      • tariq 17.10.18

        Its a great idea…ending up ur day with the thing ur are desperate to improve, will help you aloot…

  • Oluniyi Olurankinse 21.03.18

    i want to improve my speaking ability

    • Mary Milne 21.03.18

      Hi Oluniyi,
      Thanks for your comment. Have you tried any of the tips in the article? With practice I’m sure you will improve. Try doing something to practice daily, even if it’s just for a few minutes, and see how you progress.
      All the best,
      The WSE Team

    • Anonymous 18.09.18

      Too difficult to listen what teachers are talking aabout

      • Mary Milne 03.10.18

        Hi,
        It can be hard to understand native people at the beginning, but I promise you that it does become easier the more you practice. It’s like everything – learning to play a sport or a musical instrument, or learning to use new equipment at work – it takes time, practice and patience. I strongly recommend you give it a try!
        All the best,
        The WSE Team

  • mohamed Alshekur Alrehman 22.03.18

    __really u give me good education that we can learning english language

    • Mary Milne 22.03.18

      Thanks for your comment Mohamed! Good luck with your studying!
      The WSE Team

  • Cho Cho Myint 12.04.18

    Great lesson and enjoy doing this!!!

  • laith 12.04.18

    hi mary .
    i just want to let you know , that you have really made my day with that amazing article ! . just great job , and keep it up .
    much love from jordan <3

  • Anonymous 12.04.18

    i find a little bit difficult to speak in public and i don’t know what should i do,

    • Mary Milne 15.04.18

      Hi,
      It’s absolutely normal to find it difficult at first. The best thing to do is to practice with guidance from a teacher. You need to practice using some set phrases so they become completely natural and automatic. Our multi-media lessons give you the chance to build confidence in speaking, and doing our group conversation lessons will really help you as well. So if you haven’t already started, I thoroughly recommend doing our course that is ideal for people who need to focus above all on speaking.
      All the best,
      The WSE Team

  • Maher Aqeel Ahmad 16.04.18

    Hi it is amazing. I wanna improve my language skills of English. I think this is right place to improve. Tips are wonderful I will try all these tips. Thanks ?

  • Bebe25 17.04.18

    Hi.. Everyone !
    I have a difficulty in oral communication skill andhmmm .. I’m not confident to speak in public bco’z I’m afraid the words of what I say ..bcoz grammar is so
    What should I do? And also I’m not good in written

    • Mary Milne 18.04.18

      Hi,
      The best way to build confidence in speaking, and also in grammar, is to practice in an environment where you feel comfortable and at ease. In our course, you learn through speaking and from the start you speak in front of other people. We’ve seen it’s a great method to enable students to feel confident enough to speak in English when they’re at work and/or travelling.
      In order to improve your writing you also need to practice frequently. At Wall Street English you do creative writing texts for each unit of your course, which gives you the chance to use the new grammar and vocabulary you’ve learnt.
      Good luck and let us know how you get on,
      The WSE Team

  • Jackylyn 29.04.18

    thank you for the tips.It could help me a lot to enchance my english acquisition.its really difficult to deal with this language but this tips can help.

  • Mashiane Collen (*)-8 03.05.18

    Deliberately i will like to recommend the skills from the article,indeed it incourage me massively

  • Mashiane Collen (*)-8 03.05.18

    Essential tips an individual must have currently..

  • Ambele m. 13.05.18

    Good tips and I will try them out I’m

  • Mindynho 30.05.18

    I am so thankful for all you wrote in the article and I am sure you have changed my mind.

  • Jita thakuria 05.06.18

    Thank you for the lesson. I will try it.

  • Anonymous 23.06.18

    The problem is I dont have anybody to speak English

    • Mary Milne 26.06.18

      Hi,
      You’re right that you need to practice speaking. Have you visited your nearest Wall Street English center recently? If not, check it out because it can give you the chance to practice speaking whenever you want. You can do regular conversation classes, social club activities, and above all lessons that are based on listening and speaking.
      All the best,
      The WSE Team

    • Anonymous 07.09.18

      Same

  • sanjay 25.06.18

    nice article it will help the person like me who wants to improve the English language

  • john 29.06.18

    great

  • malya 06.07.18

    Your article is good Mary but I get difficulties on practices role 1 and 2 how can i removal shyness and be fun witin speaking

  • Anonymous 09.07.18

    The four skills to improve our english i.e listening,speaking,reading,and writing are so good.We should also try these skills to improve our english.

  • Anonymous 09.07.18

    Very good,I’m try to improve.

    • Anonymous 10.07.18

      thanks

  • Anonymous 10.07.18

    thanks

  • editha jastin 18.08.18

    ooh waooh am gratefull with your lesson . let the holysprit be with you in proceeding teaching us and encourage us…be blessed dear

  • editha jastin 18.08.18

    am gratefull with your lesson …be blesed

  • esraa 31.08.18

    thanks i hope this article helps me to prepare for my english exam

    • Mary Milne 03.09.18

      Hi Esraa,
      I hope they will help you too. Good luck with your exam!
      The WSE Team

  • Anonymous 02.09.18

    Thanks for the tips. I really feel awkward everytime I speak in english but I really want to improve.

    • Mary Milne 03.09.18

      Hi,
      I hope these tips help you. Keep trying and I’m sure you will improve and feel more confident.
      The WSE Team

  • Hazard 15.09.18

    I am so thang full that you change my mind

  • Anonymous 16.09.18

    Thanks!for your advices i hope these can help me .m.

  • Shamsideen jibrin 19.09.18

    THANKS guys for helping me improving my english skill i thank you so much

  • Anonymous 21.09.18

    It’s really hard to learn an English when you are alone practicing. I want a partner who is willing to help me to my English. I think that if you have a partner then your English will improve quickly.

    • Mary Milne 22.09.18

      Hi,
      I agree that it’s hard to practice alone and it’s much easier and motivating to practice with others. Sharing learning experiences is fun and you also learn a lot from others. We have lessons with small groups of 2 or 3 students, as well as social activities with 8-10 people. In this way you get the best of both options – individual attention as well as fun from meeting and practicing with several people. Where do you study at the moment?
      All the best,
      The WSE Team

  • Md.Tariqul islam-Tushar 23.09.18

    need my all course

  • Bubakar BALA 02.10.18

    everything here feeling nice and useful !

  • Anonymous 05.10.18

    As a 30-year-old adult who went to college in US (almost straight As in my humanities classes) and has lived in the US for more than a decade and communicate mostly in English, I have no problem living and working in English. In fact even the books I read for leisure are mostly in English as well. Still, I feel like a total foreigner/kid when I chat with native speakers, not understanding a good amount of their humor or the culture references. Also I feel that I lack mastery of sophisticated vocabularies even though I got above 80% in my GRE verbal a decade ago. For someone like me do you have suggestions for how to improve my English?
    P.s. I hope the suggestions do not include watching TV news or reading newspapers, which I have resolved to stay away from for as long as possible.

  • Manpreet Singh 17.10.18

    Hi there, my name is Manpreet Singh Dhammu. I think your suggestion to learn a Foreign language would help me to make my skills better. I practice regularly to learn the English language so that I can understand this language easily. Lastly, thank you so much for suggesting some tips to improve another language.

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Mary Milne

Author of this post

Mary Milne has worked for Wall Street English for 20 years. After studying at the University of Bristol and subsequently doing a CELTA course, she began her career in teaching. Over the years she has gained a wealth of knowledge and experience in ESL and has worked as an Online Community Manager, and author for Wall Street English International and Pearson, writing informative educational content. She dedicates most of her free time to music, playing in a band and singing in a choir.

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