Paige J, who teaches English in Toronto, shares the advice she gives to her students to help them improve their reading, writing and speaking skills.
‘Tips from our teachers’ is a regular series we run on our blog where we ask our teachers to shares tips and advice on improving their language skills
Speaking fragmented sentences is always better than sticking with your first language
I made a recording/video of the time when I was trying to learn French and Italian. Needless to say, I struggled myself and I find being able to laugh at yourself/your own mistakes, makes the whole process of learning a language easier. You must always be ready for a challenge.
Always always always read!
Newspapers, magazines, whatever! It’s the exposure that counts. Even reading a thesaurus or dictionary can be really helpful, as it helps your expand your vocabulary.
I have this game whereby my student must only communicate using their bodies to express themselves
Despite this game being quite challenging initially, students often pick up strategies to express their thoughts, emotions and needs through a new medium. Furthermore, if we can learn to speak without speaking, learning a new language inevitably becomes a lot more realistic.
Write down a new word every day
And don’t forget to write down its meaning as well. Learn it, then try to use it and expose yourself to it in your day to day life. This skill will expose the new learner to an array of accents and approaches specific to the new language.