Students in extracurricular English classes often think that understanding someone who speaks English very quickly is like a comprehension test. This is partly true, but learning English does not end there. Being a fluent English speaker means speaking quickly and clearly yourself. So today we are going to offer you, based on our experience as an English school, some guidelines that will help you speak English fluently in no time if you put your mind to it.
If you get confused when speaking English, find it difficult to remember words or have poor pronunciation and can't sound natural, read on. But first we recommend that you change your mindset. The right attitude can be the difference between success and failure. Stop thinking of yourself as a student learning English and start thinking of yourself as an English speaker. It's a small change that will improve your confidence and help you use the English you already know more effectively.
One of the most important aspects of learning to speak English is organisation. With a study routine, such as the one offered at Coruña British International School, students will end up speaking English faster than you think. We set a timetable for daily practice and keep you focused on your goals. Discipline is another of the things you must take into account, as consistency is essential to speak fluent English.
Listen to English on a daily basis
Familiarising your ear with the language is one of the best ways to practice. Listen to songs, watch films or programmes in English and, above all, have the opportunity to speak English with a native speaker, such as those offered by the Coruña British International School.
When you listen to the language you often get your ear used to distinguishing new words and intuiting their meanings, and to modelling pronunciation by focusing on the appropriate intonations. It is scientifically proven that at least one hour a day you will be able to understand and speak English fluently.
Reading in English
Reading daily will give you the opportunity to integrate new words into your vocabulary, which you can then use to speak English. Watch films, series, videos, listen to podcasts and read books 100% in English. We encourage our students to read in English for their leisure time, as the books we use are mostly in English. Reading is a very important tool to improve reading comprehension and to understand the meaning of words by associating them with context. Another recommendation for speaking English fluently through reading is to read aloud and practice the pronunciation of words, a common practice in our school for many years.
A common mistake people often make is to translate words into their own language. Don't make that mistake! When you translate you change the meaning of the sentence or even take it away. Learn words by context, and that can only be achieved by learning a language from a young age. Another reason to avoid translation is that, when you are involved in a conversation in English, translating every word in your head will end up blocking you, making you lose the thread and not being able to speak it fluently.
Turn your head ON in English
This is the key to speaking fluent English. You may think it's a difficult task, but it's easier than it sounds. It doesn't matter if you don't know enough vocabulary, you can work with the vocabulary you already have, and even that will help you learn new words little by little. In our classes we start as a routine, speaking 100% in English to get our students to think in English.
Repeat the words you are struggling with the most.
This is a great way to improve your spoken English, and you can do it anytime, anywhere. At home, you can speak English to yourself doing normal everyday things like cooking.
Often English sentences sound perfect in your head, but when they come out of your mouth you end up getting muddled. This happens because when you are faced with the pronunciation of any word that involves your tongue adopting an unusual form; your brain finds it difficult to coordinate the gesticulation. It's completely normal for this to happen, so make a list of everyday words that you struggle with and repeat their pronunciation.
The key to learning a language is to find a balance between study and practice. Speaking English fluently is not the same as having perfect grammar in English - even native English speakers make grammatical mistakes! Fluency is about the ability to communicate - practice, practice, practice! Speaking English fluently means being able to express your thoughts, feelings and ideas. Your goal is to speak English in complete sentences. So why not learn English with complete sentences? You will find that English will be much more useful in your everyday life if you study complete sentences, rather than just verbs and vocabulary.
The only way to learn to swim is to dive into the water. Even if your biggest fear is doing it: practising is essential to improve your fluency in English.