Probably the most common question I get from my students in my classes is: “How can I become fluent in speaking English”? My answer is usually “What does fluent mean to you?” The question itself is not a simple one and can mean different things to different learners.
However, there are a few simple and easy steps you can take to start building your fluency in English. Most of these steps are quite simple and easy, so by following them you can begin improving your English and hopefully become more fluent today!
1. Make learning English a priority.
If you make time for learning, no matter what, not only will you build a strong routine, but you will also make progress in learning English much more quickly and thus build your fluency in no time! This time is an investment in your future, so if you make a clear plan for study, and follow it, you will be much more effective when learning English and improve your fluency much more quickly than just studying for fun or only when you feel like it.
2. Use your first language less often.
It’s simple. The more often you use English, the faster you will learn, and the more fluent you will become. Many students speak their first language 99% of the time yet wonder why their English is not improving.
Think about situations where you can use English instead. You could change the language on your phone to English, watch only English TV shows and movies, read books in English, or have a conversation with a friend or colleague only in English. The more you use the language, the quicker you will become more fluent and the less you will use your first language.
3. Don’t look for shortcuts, tricks, or hacks.
Be careful of courses, programs, and training that offer short-term ‘hacks’, tricks, or shortcuts. They simply do not exist. Real fluency requires time, effort, and investment. The best results we get in our lives come from working hard every day to achieve progress. If you really want to improve your fluency and speak English to a higher standard, work at it every day, keep using English as much as possible, and reflect on feedback from your teachers to focus on areas of your English you still need to improve.
4. Build your English fluency around YOU!
If we study boring materials, read boring texts, or force ourselves to do activities that are not interesting to us, we may soon give up and lose motivation easily. The solution here is to use English in a way that matches up well with your work, study, hobbies, and interests. For example, if you love watching TV shows, find material and content on that TV show and use this as an easy way to study English. You will already have some knowledge of this topic, and you will be able to build upon the fluency you already have on these familiar topics.
5. Listen twice as much as you speak
We have two ears, and only one tongue. If you want to start speaking English fluently, you first need to learn how to be a good listener in English. Many successful language learners are able to imitate and copy the words and sounds they hear from others, helping them understand, practice, and produce this fluency more easily in English conversations. You can also apply this tip to TV shows, Movies and Podcasts by noting down specific words, phrases, and dialogues.
6. Switch your focus from Grammar to Fluency
Many English students have learned English in the classroom at school, at college, at university, or in a language school, with a heavy focus on grammar, at the expense of speaking. This results in many students who can read and write in English to a high level, but struggle to have even a basic conversation, as they have not had an opportunity to practice speaking regularly. By switching your focus from Grammar to Fluency, you can now spend time speaking with a friend, colleague, or teacher, receive feedback on your speaking and communicate more fluently in English than you ever have before.
7. Find a Professional Teacher to help you reach your goals!
No matter what your goal is in English, to improve your fluency, you will need some help. By booking classes with professional, experienced, and qualified English Teachers, you can identify your areas of weakness, build a plan with your teacher, and start to improve your fluency quickly. Most importantly, you will receive lots of specific feedback which can help guide you and keep you on the path towards incredible English fluency!
What about you? What helps you improve your English fluency?
Feel free to share in the comments below.
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