You must have come across numerous posters of ‘Learn English in 45 days’ coaching classes in your neighborhood. A simple Google search on how to speak fluent English gives more than 5 million results. Even after having so many resources at their disposal, the most common query of students all over the country is how they can speak fluent English.
In this article of English with Internshala series, we’ll share some tips and methods for developing fluency in English.
1. Understand that there is no secret ingredient: Becoming fluent in English – or any language for that matter- is a long-term process. There is no secret super-effective way that can guarantee rapid fluency. There are different methods to learn a language and its effectiveness depends on how well you practice it. Also, different methods suit different people. While some students might prefer informal conversations, others require a well-structured approach. So, if anyone promises you the secret to learning it, don’t believe them.
2. Read, watch, and listen to English every day: Active learning is always better for long term results. Reading newspapers and different genres of English books – fiction, non-fiction, magazines etc. – will help you understand the nuances of English language. And, don’t forget to read them aloud!
Start watching diverse English TV programs. Watching English news channels will help you understand the formal style of speaking. Watching movies and sitcoms, on the other hand, will help you learn different slangs and idioms for informal conversations along with improving your vocabulary. Use subtitles in the beginning and slowly you’ll realize that you no longer need them.
3. Practice, practice, and some more practice: There are different ways through which you can practice speaking English. The more you practice, the better your get.
a) Start singing English songs: Note the lyrics of the songs from the internet, play the Karaoke version (only the music of the song), and start singing aloud. If you feel shy (or if you care for others’ well-being), you can always practice in your room. :)
b) Record your speeches: Record yourself speaking and then listen to it afterward. It will help you analyze your speaking skills, and you’ll understand in which areas you need to improve. Keep a note of all the good things too; it’ll act as a source of motivation during the tiring times.
c) Speak to yourself: This is a great way to boost your confidence. Stand in front of a mirror and imagine someone is asking you a question. Practice giving answers to those questions and building a conversation. For ideas on questions, you can visit this website and choose a topic.
d) Find a buddy: The best way to learn a language is by learning it like a native. Talk to your friends or family members and find at least one person who’ll converse with you in English every day. Apart from daily conversations, you can talk on various topics like sports, politics, movies etc. You can have debates, extempore rounds, and play games like spin a tale and role-plays to enhance your learning along with having fun. :)
And if you can’t find such a person in real life, the internet has got your back. You can find partners online through various websites like conversation exchange etc.
4. Think in English: Thinking in English instead of your mother tongue is a great way to improve your spoken English and can be done anywhere, anytime! If you are traveling or are in a public place, describe the people around you (in your head!), if you are just sitting and pondering over your life – do it in English, and before you go to sleep, dwell upon the happenings of the day – in English.
Some useful tools: A variety of mobile applications are available on Play store for helping students develop fluency.
a) Hello English: Touted as Asia’s largest English learning platform, this app by CultureAlley team is used by more than 14 million users worldwide. It doesn’t require an internet connection and provides the option to learn English from 21 different languages. With many interactive games, puzzles, video lectures, and live leaderboards this is a perfect tool to test your learning and fluency in comparison to other learners.
b) Learn to speak English: A great tool with over 900 lessons and 8,000 audio files, this app is used by over 4 million users. Every lesson comes with pre-recorded readings by a native speaker. You can record your readings and then compare it with the provided recordings of native speakers. With interactive games involving role-playing, this is a good tool to develop fluency in English.
Now that you are aware of different ways to gain fluency, it’s time to do an exciting assignment; click on the next button below. To go back to the earlier article, click on the previous button.