Ugh, grammar. Does anybody like grammar? I sure don’t. However, if you want to learn English properly, you can’t ignore the basics. And grammar is a BIG basic!
This is the first article in what we hope will be a series of monthly posts on grammar. We’re going to take one grammatical headache each month and shed a little light on how you can make it work.
One of the key points about English is that for every verb we use, for every action we describe, we need to be clear about WHEN it happens. English language learners often say things like:
I go Lenin Park.
This drives listeners crazy. WHEN DOES THE ACTION OCCUR? Did you go in the past? Do you go every week? Are you planning to go next weekend? You must make the time clear: is it past, present, or future? Your listener NEEDS to know.
With more than 800 million users, Facebook is the world’s most popular social networking site. Most people use Facebook to connect with friends, play games, and post photos, news about what they are doing, or interesting things they find on the Web.
All these things are good, but have you ever thought of Facebook as an educational tool? Can you use Facebook to learn English? Well, why not?
Here are five ways you can use Facebook to improve your English.
I want to ask you four questions that will help you think about whether you are a good language learner. Answer these questions honestly:
- Are you aware of your own learning style, and do you try to learn in ways that suit you?
- Do you do things outside of class that give you the chance to learn and use English?
- Are you curious about English? Do you try to understand how the language works?
- Do you have a realistic sense of how long you’re willing to learn English, and try to overcome your feelings of frustration?
For years, researchers have known that some people are better at learning languages than others. The question is why.
While it is true that people have different learning styles – and some methods may not be appropriate for all learners – it is also true that there are some qualities that all effective language learners share.
Here are four qualities shared by all good language learners.
Wouldn’t it be great if there was an entire television station producing high-quality video programs designed to help you learn English? Well, I have news for you: there is! It’s the Australia Network, and whatever your English level, you can find professionally produced and entertaining programs to help you build your skills.
The Australia Network is Australia’s international television service. It streams Australian programs all over the world, via television and the Internet. Along with news, sports, and entertainment, the Australia Network also produces a number of video programs designed for English language learners. You can find all these videos online at http://australianetwork.com/learningenglish/. And best of all: they’re free!
Is it necessary to get English correct every time?
The short answer is NO! Speaking English correctly every time is a great goal, but it can give students a problem – especially when speaking English.
The problem is that too many students are scared of getting something wrong and this shuts them up. Bad move. Don’t be scared of making mistakes when you speak. You don’t have to be right all the time – you only need to communicate.
Here are three tips that will help you speak with confidence, even if your English skills are not 100%.
Language Link Vietnam’s Board of Managers (BOM) creates the school’s executive strategy and is responsible for heading all major departments. The BOM has two foreign and two Vietnamese members.
It may be interesting for you to know that all four BOM members have a background in language education, both as teachers and as learners. Watch these short videos to:
- Practice listening to authentic English
- Test your understanding
- Get free, practical study tips from the people who run the school
To get the most from these videos, first listen and try to answer the questions below, before you look at the answers!
Watch the videos! →
I’m certain you’ve heard of the BBC: the British Broadcasting Corporation. It’s the largest broadcaster in the world, providing TV, radio, and online services to thousands of households in the UK and beyond. But did you know that the BBC has been helping people learn English since 1943?
The BBC launched its Learning English website in 1996, and it currently has 1.5 million registered users. The site features print, audio, and video materials, along with downloadable lessons and worksheets. Content is based on real news events and stories, and updated daily by English experts in the UK. Some material is designed for teachers, but most is designed for students. And it’s all free!
Learning a new language can be an emotional experience. I know, because I have been learning Vietnamese for three years, and I still get frustrated when I have problems. I think:
Why can’t I say this better? Why do I make so many mistakes?
When I have problems communicating, I sometimes feel like I’m stupid. Do you ever feel this way too?
It’s easy to get excited when you start learning a new language. Everything is new! You’re constantly learning new words and expressions, and when you say a simple sentence, it makes you so happy!
But after awhile, this begins to change. You think: In my language, I’m so smart! Why don’t I sound like this in English? You’re no longer happy saying simple things. You want to express your personality – and you get frustrated that you’re unable to do it.
Here’s the thing to remember: these feelings are normal. Everybody feels this way sometimes – but you don’t need to feel that way all the time! Here are some things you can do to build your confidence while you continue learning English.