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So you have taken the decision to learn English? First of all, well done!
It’s not easy learning a new language sometimes. In fact, many people give up at the beginning because they feel they are not learning anything.
So let’s look at how you can learn English fast.
The first thing you must do when you are learning anything is to be positive. I always hear people say when I meet them:
“I’m sorry for my terrible English!”
This doesn’t help you at all.
Your English is not terrible, especially if I understand you. Even if it were terrible, you are trying. So it’s irrelevant how good or bad your English is at the beginning because if you persevere it can only get better.
The second thing to do as soon as you start learning a language is to set clear and realistic goals. It’s no use saying you want to be fluent in 90 days if you are a complete beginner. It’s better to set short-term goals like:
“In a week I will learn X number of new phrases, read three news articles, listen to five podcasts, and do five grammar exercises every day.”
This will help you feel more positive as you go through each task. However, it is important not to overdo it, which have the opposite effect.
Thirdly, you need to have a record of all the studying you do. This can be a document on your computer or simply a notebook which you carry around with you every day. The content must also be clear, so you can understand what you have done if you need to look back on it as you progress through your studying plan.
The way you record it should be important too. I would suggest writing the date as a title. Below that date you should write what you have studied. This can include website links or simply the type of exercise or grammar topic. It’s important to record any issues you had when you studied this area and an action plan to keep you motivated. For example:
“I had difficulty with word-formation exercises: check back on the same exercise in three days.”
If you are using a digital document pictures, charts, tables, and any illustrations can help you memorize information in a better way.
Let’s take a look at how you can vary your study so results are more evident:
When you study anything your brain is already forgetting it. Yes, this is true. It has been proven that your memory retention level is very low very soon after you learn something new. It is a natural phenomena that you quickly forget information that has just been presented to you.
Take the idea of learning someone’s name for the first time. It is common knowledge that by the time we have shaken the hand of the person we have just been introduced to, we have already forgotten their name. Well, most of us do this anyway. I was often guilty of this, but now I have discovered a fantastic technique that helps me remember anything and practically everything.
So here it is. When you shake that person’s hand and hear their name, you repeat it immediately and look at them in the eyes. Eye contact when hearing their name makes the memory more conscious, and not subconscious. Hence, the reason we don’t remember it immediately. It is also a good idea to try to associate a word that can help you remember that name.
For example, let’s imagine the person’s name is Steve. So by associating a word with his name you will never forget it. This could be something associated with your first impression of this person. It could be something like “Sweaty Steve,” from the moment you shook his sweaty hand. A strong emotion like this can help you remember his name.
Let’s think about another example: Samuel has very big teeth and so you use the word Samuel the mule to remember his name. The more extreme the choice of the word association, the easier it will be to remember the name.
Which brings me on to the whole idea of learning anything in English, or anything in life. Our memory is triggered by emotion, such as fear, excitement, sadness, hate, love, and many more. Though strong emotions bring on stronger memories.
Why do we always remember every detail of past memories when we were scared, excited, happy or sad?
Think about a time when you were really scared. I bet you are thinking about it now. You remember every single detail about that don’t you? Why? Because your memory associates those images and situations when your emotions are in a heightened state.
So even though it seems a little crazy to perceive but very often I get the best results when I induce emotions into my teaching. That doesn’t mean I scare the living daylights out of my students. No, that wouldn’t really bring me much continuity with my lessons. I mean that I will insert as much happiness, joy, excitement and love to what I do, which will be reflected by the student if they feel the same. If they don’t feel the same, then I change my methodology until a strong and positive emotion is achieved. Because that’s when real learning begins and you start learning English fast.
Thanks for reading.
© Dominic Christopher Elliston and http://www.teacherdom.com 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Dominic Christopher Elliston and http://www.teacherdom.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.