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Start your own English language blog. Even for people who don’t have to write in English, writing can be a great way of properly learning the kind of vocabulary you need to describe your own life and interests, and of thinking about how to stop making grammar mistakes. The problem most people have is that they don’t know what to write about. One traditional way to make sure you write every day in English is to write an English diary (journal), and a more up to date way of doing this is to write a blog.
Popular topics include your language learning experience, your experience studying abroad, your local area, your language, or translations of your local news into English.
Write a news diary. Another daily writing task that can work for people who would be bored by writing about their own routines in a diary is to write about the news that you read and listen to everyday.
If you include your predictions for how you think the story will develop (e.g. “I think Hillary will become president”), this can give you a good reason to read old entries another time, at which time you can also correct and mistakes you have made and generally improve what you have written.
Listen to English music. Even listening to music while doing something else can help a little for things like getting used to the natural rhythm and tone of English speech, although the more time and attention you give to a song the more you will learn from listening to it again in the future.
Read the whole thing with no help. Although using a dictionary has been shown to help with both short term and long term learning of vocabulary, the fact that using it slows reading down can stop some people reading in English at all. Reading a whole book quickly through just for pleasure from time to time will help you remember how fun reading in another language can be.
Be realistic about your reading level. Most researchers agree that people learn most when reading something they understand almost all of. If there are one or two words per page that you have never seen before, that
is about the right level. If there are three or more on every page, you should switch to something easier and come back later.
Read and learn everything. At the opposite extreme, it can be hard work but very satisfying to get to the end of a book knowing that you have learnt every word in it. See other tips on this page to make sure it is a book that is easy enough to do this with and to ensure that the vocabulary you learn is useful.
Set goals. Deciding how many hours you want to study, how many words you want to learn or what score you want to get in a test are all good ways of making sure you do extra study.
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