7 Steps to Learn English

We live in a world where learning English as a second language is essential. Not only for professional growth, but a second language brings possibilities to get to know a new culture. However, Learning English is much more than simply memorizing the translation of words into your language. This implies a total understanding of the language structure. The language is always rooted in the culture from which it comes. Therefore, you do not expect to be able to learn English without having adopted certain criteria and thoughts of the new culture in question.

Having the right information on how to start learning English as an ESL student is very important. There is a big difference between partially understanding the language and being fluent. If you want to acquire fluency but don’t know where to start, then this post is for you. We are going to present seven steps to start learning English. 

 

Learning English is a goal that cannot be taken lightly. Therefore, you need to plan your learning strategy. No matter how lucky you are, no miracle will happen that allows you to handle a smooth conversation overnight. The path of learning requires strategy and preparation. A good tip to start is to make a space in your agenda to schedule your goals. It is good to prepare a list of everything you expect to learn in a certain period of time. Although you may not meet all the objectives, having your purpose clear at each stage allows you to progress steadily.

To start the whole process, you need to think about how you will learn the language. You will need to research and find out which method can help you acquire fluency in English. At this point, it is important to consider your ability to discipline and your daily commitment to the study. Also, it is important to find a material to guide you made by specialists and language scholars,

It is important to make a commitment to yourself and reserve a daily schedule to study and maintain daily contact with the language. For example, you can set aside about 30 minutes to study English. During this period of study, stay fully focused on what you are doing. Find a quiet place that is free from external factors. Set up a study calendar and follow it according to your goals.

The study needs to be a habit, but it cannot take all your time to the point of tiring your mind. Thirty minutes a day is ideal in a daily routine, especially considering that it is a reasonable period for not compromising other daily tasks. In addition to being important to reserve this study time, you will not miss some idle moments throughout the day. Use them to think, read texts, and listen to songs in English.

To learn to speak, it is necessary to learn to listen. It is not enough to listen without understanding. Create a base in the language, make contact with English daily. Familiarize yourself with it. A good and fun way to start is by watching English movies and series that you already know. Knowing and enjoying the story, it is easier to watch it a second or third time with English subtitles, and then even without subtitles. The same goes for books and music. Listen to some music you already know and like and follow along with the lyrics. You will see that it will be easier to understand.

The important thing is to be immersed in English and contact with the language exists in every way: speaking, listening, writing, and reading. Try taking the English language for small day-to-day tasks, such as social media or your smartphone.

Now, it is important to know how the learning process actually happens. Studying is not just sitting in front of a book and reading it from beginning to end. The act involves discipline and some more effective techniques. Go through the learning process slowly. Do it with fun, so you don’t get bored easily. Below are some of the techniques to help you quickly learn English.

Pronunciation

This should be the first phase of learning. Pronunciation is the saying of a word in English correctly. English is used in several countries, so the accent used is not always the same. But the most commonly used are American English and British English.

So, why do you have to learn the pronunciation first? This is because you need to be trained to pronounce correctly in the early stages of learning English. The correct pronunciation will also depend on practice. That is why you will need to practice daily.

If you are wrong in its pronunciation, it will even lead to misunderstanding. Therefore, it is essential for you to start learning correctly from the beginning. A good pronunciation helps you not only to speak well, but also to understand those who already speak the language. Besides, it will also give you the confidence necessary when the time comes to talk with a native.

Vocabulary

Learning vocabulary is a must if you want to be able to speak English. You can’t make a sentence if you are confused. Access a list of words and take your time to learn them every day. However, this does not mean you memorize a large number of terms as you will forget them easily. You can write these vocabularies down in a word document, a notebook, or any other system that can help you memorize them easily.

Learning vocabulary is very important when learning English. If you have a little vocabulary with you, you will encounter many difficulties. It could even be that you will easily give up learning English if you learn grammar, but your vocabulary is only a little. Memorize vocabulary continuously, every day. It doesn’t need much, as long as you have to memorize at least one vocabulary one day. Also, don’t forget to practice the correct pronunciation.

Spelling

Spelling has a relationship with the pronunciation of the correct English vocabulary. So, practicing correct spelling and pronunciation is already a package with learning vocabulary. When you memorize vocabulary, make sure the spelling in each vocabulary is correct. For example, the word “book.” You should know this word is spelled or formed from the letters “b-o-o-k.” By knowing the spelling of each word, you can avoid using the wrong word when writing in English.

In English, there are also several words in the same pronunciation but different spelling. In other terms, it is often called ‘homophones‘ (similar sounds of words). Learn to differentiate them so that you don’t get confused.

Grammar

When you start with your learning process, remember that every aspect of the language is very important, and grammar may be the most essential. This does not mean that you should learn the rules as if you were a linguist, but understand how the main tenses are structured (past, present, and future in all its variations). Regardless of the method you choose to learn English, it is a good idea to try to learn at least ten new words every week. After a while, your vocabulary will be wide.

Anyone who has learned English and wants to give you some advice will not find better words to refer to than telling you to watch English shows, movies, series, programs, etc. Watching programs and listening to conversations in English is an option that will develop your learning to new levels. In this way, you will have a real-time interaction with the language. In some cases, you will see the type of behavior and expression of the language used in everyday situations.

The best thing about this is that it gives you the tools and level of English of any native person while enjoying your favorite movies and stories. Your success will be determined by your consistency in learning until your English skills experience rapid progress.

The simple desire to learn a new language and the personal goals of can already be quite a motivation. However, there are other factors, such as finding an interaction group where you can meet and talk in English. This will make you practice the language even more and learn during conversations and exchanges of experiences.

Conclusion

Remember that learning English requires more effort. You will never finish learning a language. Even in your native language, there are words and expressions you don’t know. Keep in mind that you can’t learn everything, or forget everything. When you forget something, do not get frustrated or do tantrums with yourself. Just go back and check your notes, and you will be back in the game.

Finally, and most importantly, remember that no one was brought into the world with full knowledge of things. Learning English requires time, effort, and energy. But with practice, desire to learn, and dedication, you will find yourself enjoying watching movies and having conversations in English without struggling.

All English Lessons

Learning English can be done in a huge variety of ways, from listening to native speakers and immersing yourself in day to day conversations all the way through to written exercises. We have a wide range of useful information and learning material designed to help you get to grips with the language and gain a much better understanding of it. It is for this reason that our editors have put together a selection of what they deem to be some of the very best learning English articles that you will find.

By taking the time to read through these articles and soak up the information presented to you, you will be sure to find that learning English soon becomes much easier. These articles are designed to explain ideas and tips in an easy to understand manner that is easy to digest. If our editors have suggested them, we believe them to be ideal.

English Grammar

English is renowned for having some seriously complicated grammar rules and it can be overwhelming trying to master every single one. It is important to take things step by step and focus on one grammar rule at a time, read up on it, practise it and then practise some more. This is the best way to be able to memorise and understand all the grammar rules that you will need to become a fluent speaker of the English language.

Grammar is simply the structure of the language and every language in the world has a grammar system. There are many points to consider within grammar such as syntax, phonetics and semantics, all of which sound extremely confusing. But once you have a handle on things, these will all seem much more easy to understand.

We have an excellent range of articles specifically designed in an easy to understand format which will assist you in learning all the grammar skills that you will need on your English learning journey. Choose one which interests you and go with it, then you can begin including your new found skills in your English conversations.

It is really important to remember that you cannot successfully learn a language without having a good knowledge of the grammar. It is one thing to learn common phrases and repeat these, and this will get you so far but if you want a much deeper understanding of the language then learning the grammar is an absolute must.

 English Vocabulary

Learning English vocabulary is the basis of your journey to becoming a fluent speaker of the English language. When learning your native language, you begin building up a vocabulary at an early age and this develops over time, until you come to a point where to are fully coherent in the language. The same applies when learning English, you will begin with a basic vocabulary and over time, learn new words and phrases to add into your vocabulary in order to get to a more fluent speaking ability.

There are hundreds of thousands of words within the English language and it may seem like somewhat of a daunting task to remember them all and create your new English vocabulary. But it can be much more simple than it first appears. There are common phrases and words which are used every day in English conversations and there are more complicated words and phrases which may not used as often, all of these make up the vocabulary of the speaker.

Use these pages and articles to develop a greater English vocabulary and take the time to focus on the words and phrases that you feel are the most important and are going to be the most beneficial to your learning experience. On top of this, you need to consider what words and phrases you feel that you are going to need first and this will help you prioritise your vocabulary as well.

Visual Dictionary

Many people pick up a language by reading lines and lines of text but if you are one of the many people who struggle to learn this way then there is an alternative. By using visual vocabulary, you are able to pick up an understanding of the target language, in this case, English, through the use of images alongside the required vocabulary.

By looking at a picture, the brain can more easily absorb the information been given and it has been proven that information is easier to remember when shown in a visual format. Learning a language can be overwhelming but by linking an image to the vocabulary that it represents, you are much more likely to recall the information quickly, which is essential when learning a language due to having to have a reasonable response time in a conversation.

If you think that you would benefit more from visual learning then this is definitely the place for you. Browse through some of the images here and use them to broaden your English vocabulary and get well on your way to becoming much more fluent.

English Words

In the English language there are literally hundreds of thousands of words, this may seem like a lot and you would be right in thinking so because compared to other languages, English has more words than any other. With Russian coming in at second place and having 20,000 less words than English. So you have your work cut out for you. That being said, English words tend to fall into certain categories and this can make learning them so much more simple.

Depending on what you are trying to say, will highly depend on which type of word you need to use. There are many different word types such as adjectives, nouns, verbs, adverbs, pronouns, conjunctions and so forth. Again this may seem like a daunting task to learn all of the various types but once you establish which words fall into which category, your English learning will excel to a whole new level.

Not only will learning English words help you in becoming much more fluent and natural sounding when using the language but on top of this, it is essential to be aware of English words and their types in order to be able to form a sentence.

The structure of a sentence is made up from various different types of words and understanding this structure will assist you in being able to form a sentence more easily and choose the correct English words.

It is not advisable to pick up an English dictionary, start at the beginning and learn words from A to Z as this will not be beneficial in becoming fluent. Learning the different word classes and what they are used for is the best way to learn as well as helping you to get to grips with English grammar.

Slang Words

In the English language there are many informal conversations that you will hear which feature slang terms. For native speakers these come as second nature and they often do not even realise that they are using a slang term. Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could get to the point in English speaking where you felt this way too? There is a way that this can be done and that is by taking the time to look at various English slang terms.

In short, a slang term is a word or phrase which is used in a colloquial sense, usually during an informal conversation, There are a variety of forms of English slang, some of which are used in a mild comedic way, for example the use of the phrase ‘get some dough’ which is slang for earning money right the way through to the use of obscenities.

Whilst obscenities, more commonly known as swear words are used in slang, it is important to note that these phrases should never be used in a formal situation such as during a transaction at a shop of within the workplace.

Slang is used to make a conversation lighter and less intense but it can also make making a point much more simple and quick. Many people will use slang terms in order to more easily express a feeling or an emotion which is more relateable, for example saying ‘I am knackered’ which means ‘I am tired’ can have a much bigger impact.

Whatever the reason for using slang, there is no denying that it features heavily within English and is something that should be focused on during the learning of the language.

Synonyms

There is more than one way to say a lot of things and that is where the synonym comes in. Often times, when listening to the English language, you will notice that someone may refer to something using a different word or phrase. This is called using a synonym. A good example of this would be the word beautiful, which can also be expressed by saying the words stunning, pretty, eye-catching or a whole host of other words.

A synonym is a word of phrase which means exactly the same as another word or phrase. One resource which is often used to come up with synonyms is a thesaurus. However, it is a really good idea to commit as many synonyms as you can to memory.

The reason for learning synonyms is so that you have a broader vocabulary and can avoid repeating the same word over and over again during any one conversation. Not only this, but being able to use synonyms will aid you in sounding more like a natural speaker.

Abbreviations

An abbreviation is essentially a shortened version of a word or of a phrase, usually in a written context but in some cases in a verbal context as well. They are used in order to avoid having to continually write out longer words or phrases and can also be used to save time. In some cases abbreviations are used as a way to avoid having many longer words within a text, or in some cases within speech and can be implemented as a way to abide by modern standards. For example, the abbreviation LOL, is used as modern slang. It is not uncommon to hear abbreviations used in modern spoken language such as the term YOLO, which people will say during a conversation.

There is no set pattern to what an abbreviation should look like and in some cases, the individual author may even make up their own. You are unlikely to see a pattern but, with that being said, there are many common abbreviations which are standard within the English language.

Depending on the abbreviation, you might see a word in a shortened way, for example the word rehab is often used as an abbreviation of the word rehabilitation, this is common place and widely understood. However, in some cases, the abbreviation may come in the form of letters, which is also known as an acronym. An example of this might be YMCA, this is an abbreviation of the widely recognised charity the Young Men’s Christian Association, although it is rare that anyone ever refers to it by its full name as the abbreviation is standard.

Commonly Confused Words

English is said to be one of the hardest languages to learn, due to the many irregular grammar rules and in a lot of cases, the commonly confused words. The reason for this is that the English language has a tendency to use the same sounds, with slightly different spellings and meanings that could not be further apart.

It is not uncommon, even for native speakers to get words and their spellings mixed up and often times on English speaking social media posts you will see a comment correcting the spelling of the original poster.

In some cases, there are only two spellings to get confused between, but in some cases there are as many as three in words such as they’re which can also be spelt their and there and the three are often jumbled and misunderstood. It is important, as you begin to get a grip on the language to be able to differentiate between the different spellings and words in order to correctly express what you wish to say. Committing these commonly confused words to memory from the start and learning their uses and meanings is an excellent way to ensure that you always have a handle on them.

When looking at commonly confused words, you will often come across the term ‘homophones’ which is the descriptive word to describe the topic.

Common Phrases

Within the English language there are currently thought to be over 170 thousand words in use, this is a lot to learn and so in some cases it is better to put down the dictionary and concentrate on some of the most common phrases that are used within the language. Whilst this is not going to make you fluent, it is an excellent place to start because it will give you the basis of everything else you will need to learn. On top of this, if you have a good understanding of the most commonly used phrases, you will be able to get by much more easily in most day to day situations.

If you are only planning to learn a small amount of the English language, perhaps you are staying in an English speaking country for a short period of time or you may have the need to perform some basic communication via email, for example, then common phrases are a great way to get that basic knowledge that you require.

As well as the above mentioned points, knowing the key phrases will enable you to begin speaking the language much more quickly than if you attempt to learn individual words. The reason behind this is that attempting to structure sentences yourself by means of stringing words together can often prove to be very tricky whereas using common phrases as a starting point can give you a good idea of how the grammar works within the language and enable you to build on these phrases. You will also be able to understand much more easily, what is being said to you during a conversation as many native speakers will use common phrases if they are aware that you are not completely fluent in the language.

English Idioms

Idioms are used massively during both spoken and written examples of the English language and you would be hard pressed (that’s an idiom) to spend even a few hours in an English speaking country and not hear at least one example of an idiom.

But what are they? In simple terms, an idiom is a figure of speech which is not meant to be taken in a literal sense. That being said, in their original use, one may often find that the idiom began by having a literal meaning, for example the term spill the beans is an idiom for announcing a secret, but its original meaning referred to the use of beans being put into a cup to cast a vote. If the cup was knocked over, the beans would spill out and reveal who had won.

Due to the non literal meaning of the English idiom, it is important to put an emphasis on learning some of the most frequently used ones. This way, not only will you be better able to understand when you hear someone use an idiom in conversation, but you will also be able to include them in your own speech. What better way to make yourself sound as if you are a native speaker?

English Collocations

A collocation is essentially a group of words which are usually found together, and this is something that you see often within the English language so it is important to learn which words are grouped together in normal speech. Collocations will sound familiar to a native speaker and are often used in conversation as well as in a written context.

The reason that is is so important is because by using the correct collocations, your English will sound much more fluid and natural. There are many examples of collocations, one such example being heavy rain. This is a collocation which is used very frequently in the English language to describe weather where there is a lot of rain. Other ways you might say this phrase could be large rain or strong rain but this would not sound correct, despite being perfectly grammatically correct.

There are various ways in which you can learn the most regularly sued collocations in English, one of which is to commit them to memory by reading through our series of articles here. Once you have a good ground knowledge of these collocations, you can then begin to integrate them into your conversations.

It may seem like collocations are a small detail when it comes to speaking English, but in fact they are much more important than they first appear and by using them you are more likely to sound like a native speaker, which is the goal when learning any language.

Phrasal Verbs

You are aware of verbs, which are ‘doing words.’ But there are verbs which feature more than just one word, these are known as phrasal verbs and are made up with two or more words. This type of verb is quite common in the English language and there are a huge variety of this type of verb such as ‘go into’ or ‘give out’ and it is very important that you are aware of how these verbs work.

The most simple explanation of a phrasal verb is that it is a phrase that describes the action rather than a word that describes the action. They are made up from a verb and a preposition or an adverb. In some cases, you will find phrasal verbs which feature three words, an example of this might be ‘look forward to.’

As part of learning the English language, it is important to take note of the phrasal verbs, how the are conjugated and how they fit into day to day spoken and written language.

There are many phrasal verbs which have a literal meaning, but just to confuse things a little more, there are some phrasal verbs which make up an idiom, or a non literal phrase. A good example of this would be the phrasal verb to ‘put up.’ This can refer to giving someone somewhere to stay. When learning English, these phrasal verbs can be an excellent way to incorporate some idiomatic language into your speech and really impress the natives with your knowledge of their language.

English Pronunciation

English is a language which uses many letters that do not appear to be needed within a word. For example the word ‘tough.’ This is a word that, when seen by a non native speaker, could be pronounced in huge variety of ways, when in fact is it simply pronounced ‘tuf.’ Compare this to the word ‘dough’ you might think that you have the pattern sorted out and would pronounce this word ‘duf’ but you would be wrong. These two words do not rhyme, despite having a similar spelling. Is your mind blown?

If the answer to the above question is yes, there is no need to worry, you would not be alone. It is difficult, at times even for native English speakers to be able to know how to pronounce certain words, especially with all of those pesky unnecessary letters. But don’t let this put you off, one you have learnt about how to pronounce certain sounds within the language, it will become second nature to you.

This is why is it super important to make sure that learn the correct pronunciation of different English sounds right from the beginning of your learning. This will not only enable you to better understand the language but will also help you when reading from a text, especially if you are reading aloud.

Because there are so many different ways to pronounce certain letter combinations, it is a good idea to learn commonly mispronounced words individually and commit these to memory.

Another thing that is is important to remember is to learn the different sounds that each letter can make, for example the letter A might sound one way in the word ‘bag’ but sound different in the word ‘garble.’

Punctuation

Forming sentences in English is one thing but without the use of punctuation, these sentences become jumbled and often times, meaningless. This is why it is super important to get a handle on how punctuation is used within the language.

Punctuation is simply a series of marks which determine pauses and beats within the structure of a sentence. Using them can be the difference between your sentence meaning one thing or another. One of the most common examples of how this can happen is the sentence ‘Let’s eat, Grandpa.’ When used with a comma, this sentence tells Grandpa that it is time to eat, however when you take the comma away, the sentence then says ‘Let’s eat Grandpa’ which tells us that the speaker is inviting everyone to eat Grandpa, literally. This shows us how important the correct use of punctuation can be.

You will find these detailed articles an excellent way to hone your punctuation skills and this will add to your ability to sound more like a native speaker in both verbal and written conversations.

Writing

When we talk about writing skills, we are referring to your ability to provide the reader with all the relevant information that they will need in a clear and concise manner that can be easily understood.

Someone who has good writing skills will be easily able to put their message across in a piece of writing that is grammatically correct and interesting, captivating the reader and causing them to want to read more.

Literary Devices

When you are learning the English language, it is one thing to understand spoken conversation but it is also vital that you include the reading of some written language in your studies. The reason for this is that there are some things which feature in written English that do not feature in spoken English. One of these things is known as a literary device.

A literary device is a technique used by an author which can make the reading more understandable from a variety of perspectives. Using one of these structures makes the reader more easily able to understand and relate to what the writer is trying to convey and they are used very commonly in many examples of written English. This is not limited to stories, literary devices can be seen in use in texts such as scripts, song and essays too.

Some common types of literary devices are similes and metaphors which are used to make comparisons between things and create a bigger picture. Another common type would be alliteration which is used to add rhythm to a piece of text. However, there are many more literary devices and it is important to gain a good understanding of these. By reading articles on the subject, you are sure to be able to pick any literary device out of a piece of text.

Essay

In the most simple terms, an essay is a short piece of writing which is set around a specific topic or subject. The piece of writing will give information surrounding the topic but will also display the opinions and thoughts of the author.

Often times, an essay is used in an academic sense by way of examination in order to determine whether a student has understood their studies and as a way of testing their knowledge on a specific subject. An essay is also used in education as a way of encouraging a student to develop their writing skills.

American And British English

Whilst English is spoken in both the United States Of America and in the United Kingdom, there are some greatly differing aspects to the language, depending on the geographical location that you are in. If you are speaking with an American and use British English, you will still be understood, as the two versions of the language are extremely similar and a native speaker of one will definitely understand a native speaker of the other. However, there are some slight differences in terms of local slang and what certain things are referred to as.

A great example would be that in American English the device used to transport people from floor to floor is referred to as an elevator, whereas in British English, it would be called a lift. A British English speaker would perfectly understand what you meant if you used the word elevator, but it would not be something that you would hear used very often when in England.

There are a huge variety of words which differ between the two versions of the language and another example are slang words. In America, some of the words which are used in British English, that may be quite offensive, would be quite acceptable to use within day to day conversation. An example being the word pissed, in America this word is frequently used on day time television, however in the United Kingdom, the word is seen as offensive.

Another point to take note of is that in America, the spelling of some words in the English language is different to the spelling in the United Kingdom, and often times these differences are very subtle. For example, the letters re are often rearranged at the end of a word, in America you would write ‘center’ whereas in the UK, it would be centre. The letters S and Z are also often changed in words such as Criticise (UK) and Criticize (USA.)

There are other variations on the English language in various countries where it is spoken, most commonly, Australia, where there are more similarities to British English but also many of their own words and phrases.

Recent Lessons

Trending Lessons