Here are some speaking, vocabulary, writing, grammar and reading tips for you to improve your English anytime.
- Think about the process of reading. When you skim read, you just get a general idea about the content. If you are looking for something particular, like the name of your team on the sports pages, you scan the text for more detail.
- If you enjoy reading about fashion in your language, read about fashion in English too. You will already understand some of the vocabulary and ideas and have a good background knowledge. Conversely, if you hate films and never go to the cinema, reading an English-language film review will probably not be a useful exercise for you because you won’t enjoy it.
- Reading one article every day is better than reading a whole paper only once a fortnight. Ask your teacher to recommend suitable materials.
- Find a penfriend and write letters to him or her. Penfriends can be a relative or someone you’ve never met in another country or simply a classmate you keep in touch with by letter as well as see in class. Use e-mail as a quick way to keep in touch.
- Record yourself reading a short text aloud and then use this later as a dictation i.e write down what you hear.
- Brainstorm ideas when deciding what to write. This means putting every idea you have on to paper in note form. Once you have a lot of ideas, you can sort out the good from the not so good, but initially it is useful just to get as wide a variety of ideas as possible.
- Keep a diary of your thoughts and ideas. Write down how you are feeling and what is on your mind at the moment. Write freely and don’t worry about making mistakes.
- When you have a piece of writing checked by a teacher, make a note of the mistakes you have made. We all have particular, “personal” errors we frequently make. Write up a checklist of these mistakes so that you can go through your next piece of writing before you hand it in to make sure you haven’t made the same mistakes again. For example: good at (not in), occasion (not ocassion).