Is learning English your biggest challenge? These 7 tips will help you

Two students sit in a cool cafe, drinking coffee from a very fancy glass recepticle. This could quite easily be a coffee shop in Brighton and they look very happy to be there.

When you start to learn English, it can be a challenge. However, there are some great ways for you to improve your language skills and learn about the culture of England and the UK at the same time. Whether you like movies, listening to music or reading, we have lots of ideas for how you can learn English and have fun at the same time!

Last modified on

Why is learning English important?

Along with England, English is the official language in a large number of countries, including the continents of North America and Australia. As of 2022 English is the official language of 67 different countries and the most spoken language in the world for both native and non-native speakers. More than 1,100 million people use English every day around the globe.

In addition, it’s the language of science, aviation, computers, diplomacy and tourism, so learning English is vital if you want to expand the opportunities available to you. If you are looking to further your career and enter a global market, or undertake a high level academic course in university, then learning English is vitally important as it is the dominant language, and spoken worldwide.

Also, many of the world’s great books, movies and songs are in the English language so, for your own pleasure, learning English is important as it will allow you to understand and enjoy a whole new world of media and entertainment.

What is your big ambition?

You might have a very different reason for learning English, so if you find it a challenge, try and focus on why you need to learn. What are you hoping to achieve in life and how will English help you to do that? The more you connect learning English to your goals in life, the better.

Will it allow you to enrol on a university course? Will it improve your career prospects or gain you a lucrative promotion? Or will it simply allow you to travel and meet lots of new people, most of whom will find common ground in the English language? If any of these are your goals, they will drive you on to practise and learn English.

What do you enjoy doing?

Even with a clear goal in mind, the act of learning English can still be a challenge. So next, think about what you like to do in your free time, and how you best like to learn. Try and find learning activities which are fun and relaxing, and as close to your usual lifestyle as possible.

When you have found something you enjoy, try to incorporate some English language learning into your hobby or new pastime. If English is a part of what you enjoy, you are more likely to learn new words and phrases during your downtime.

How to learn English whilst having fun

If you’re looking to learn English at home, in England or at an English language school such as ELC, here are 7 quick tips to help make learning English easy:

1) Watch movies or TV series in English

When you’re learning English, watching English language films and TV programmes is a great way to learn whilst having fun. If you watch your favourite show or movie on DVD, Blu-ray or Netflix, then you can pause and rewind to make sure you understand what people are saying. If you watch a film in English that you already know well in your own language, you will find that your brain will start to connect the language to the scene, and that will help learning too. Or you could watch and English movie with subtitles in your own language, and learn that way. Soon you will be remembering famous lines and can try acting along with the characters in English. May the force be with you!

2) Read English language books and graphic novels

Reading graphic novels, comic books and magazines in English helps you learn the language as the pictures tell the story to help you understand the words. Comics are helpful as they use short sentences that are easier to understand. English language comics and magazines also help teach British culture, which is great for when you visit England and the UK.

3) Keep a diary in English

Every evening, write a few sentences in English in a notebook or on your smartphone about what you did that day. This is a fantastic way to learn English and also practise your grammar skills. After you have written the words in your journal, read them out loud and feel how the words sound when you say them. Try also writing shopping and ‘to do’ lists in English. And once you’ve bought your shopping, try following a recipe in English!

4) Don’t be afraid to make mistakes

Making mistakes when you are learning to speak English is great! Mistakes help us learn, and the more mistakes you make, the more you learn. If you worry about making a mistake then you will never open your mouth. Have courage and aim to make at least ten mistakes in your English every day. When you learn English at ELC, your teachers love it when you are not afraid to make a mistake as they are there to help.

5) Listen to English radio and podcasts

Surround yourself with the sound of the English language by listening to English radio and podcasts. Listen at home, when you are walking or travelling on public transport. Even if you only understand part of what is being said, you will get used to the sound of English and soon you will be learning more than you realise. Learn English songs too and sing along to them in the shower!

6) Practise, practise, practise!

The more you speak English, read English, write English and listen to English, the faster you will learn English. Also, try thinking in English. Take a simple thought in your native language and then think it again in English, then try saying it out loud (although maybe not on the bus!). Immersion in the language and culture is a guaranteed method of learning the English language – and quickly!

7) Take an English course with ELC

The best way to learn English is to study England at an English language school. English courses at ELC enable you to learn English with the best teachers, stay with English families, and make friends for life. There is no better way to learn English than to travel to England and surround yourself with English 24/7.

Learning English can be great fun and will give you a skill that you can use in every part of your life. Book your English language course with ELC today!

A photoshopped image of a woman wearing a white top pointing to the word "English" which is superimposed onto the photograph along with a number of random cartoon images of things like a globe, a computer, a diploma, suggesting how much English is used around the world.