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How to improve English speaking skills?


Deepak kumar sharma 
posted on 03 August 2012


2 line bio - The main problem faced while trying to speak in English is that if we don't live in an English-speaking atmosphere and  don't have friends or family to speak English with, we can’t practice English speaking skills?

 

There are many occasions where we need to talk or express ourselves in English. They may be Group discussion, Personal interviews, seminar or meeting organized by institutes or corporate or simply discussing with client or associate. English is almost a mandatory language to communicate or take part in these activities. It is more difficult for a non- English background person to face this kind of situation. English is becoming a basic need now a day. Whatever you work on internet, computer, mobile or any document; mostly they use English as their language. So the question is “Do you find it difficult to take command over this foreign language?” If your answer is yes; then here, we will work on it and figure out some solutions.

 

Though I am novice to speak English but still I am trying to help the people who want to speak in English with this article. Many people can understand the other person’s views in English as like in Hindi but unable to express themselves in English. Every person in this world has a language as his default/native language. If they have command on one language; then they can surely achieve command on another language. There are many people in this world who have command on more than three languages. But remember that one’s native language is his root, so he doesn’t ignore its importance while learning other language.

 

3 Basic uses of a language are:

 

1. Reading

2. Writing and

3. Speaking.

 

At this moment, I know that you can read and understand English very well because you are in the middle of this article. Writing in English is not a tough task if you know basic grammar. So what is left is English speaking. Many of my friends joined English speaking classes but still they feel it difficult to speak English with fluency. So what is the thing one needs most to speak a language. Most of us will reply “knowledge of proper grammar”.  Well, I am not agree with them. I have a very little knowledge of ‘Hindi grammar’ but I can speak Hindi very well. Rich vocabulary is also not a correct answer because I never used a Hindi grammar as well in order to speak Hindi. And vocabulary is mainly belongs to writing part of a language than speaking. Speaking is little different from writing. If we know how to make simple sentences using common words, it is enough to start speaking in English.

 

What are the main difficulties which stops us to speak in English? First obstacle is that we want to start it with perfection. Remember we can’t get perfection in the beginning. Learning 10000 new words will not help you as much as practicing 500 common words of conversation in English, so one has to become very good at it. He should make a list of frequently used words and sentences in English and should try to pronounciate them frequently. Sit in front of a mirror and answer some interview like questions at your own. For Example, Tell me something about yourself; Share your views on some subject chosen by you. You can also practice like newsreader from English newspaper. Whatever method you apply, practice is the essence. Perfection comes with a lot of practice. Even I believe that there is no such thing like perfection. There is only a cycle of making mistakes and improvements. A Man can never be perfect because perfection is a journey and not a destination.

 

Now recall; the native language you speak, when and where did you learn this? Please recall that before reading further. Okay; you will find that environment plays an important role in learning a language. Mostly we learn to speak a language at home as well as school. Our friends, family members and relatives are our teachers to speak a language. Now if you want to speak another language. Follow the same procedure. Make some friends who speak English. There are English medium schools everywhere in India. India is the second largest country with people who speak English. Start conversation with anybody. One funny suggestion, call your customers care representative of mobile service operator (If it’s free); choose language option as English and start chatting. Don’t hesitate. He doesn’t know you. I tried it many time but I initiated in English and ended with Hindi. Now some better practical solutions. If it is not practical for you at this moment, do practice at home. Purchase some CD/ DVDs of English movies with subtitles, songs with lyrics, speeches etc. and repeat them yourself. Learn their speaking tone and pronunciation of words. Read English news paper and books loudly, listen and record English news, interviews on TV, radio and try to repeat them in same way. Also have a good dictionary and grammar like oxford to enrich your knowledge and confidence. Knowledge is power, so enhance it. I often visit some good knowledge sites in English like Wikipedia and other. You can visit sites of your interest or simply read good English material, join a forum, chat with friends (skype,mobile, computer etc.)about topic of their interest.

 

In nutshell, keep in touch with English as more as possible and try it on your own each day. Attend some Group discussions and personal interviews in English held in your area by any institute or company. If possible, join some club group etc., where members speak English. You may have fear in the beginning but remember “There is victory beyond the fear” I do practice with my nephew and niece who go to an English medium school and who are less than ten years old. I must admit that new generation is more advanced than me in spite of age difference. Reason is academic education and fast changing technology world. Computer and cable TV has made them more advanced.

 

You can’t learn swimming without landing in water, so just start speaking, no matters correct or incorrect. There will be many people to correct you or accept you. There are more than a million words in English language, but you need only few thousand words to speak it. On the other hand, never think that knowledge of grammar and rich vocabulary are basic needs to speak English. Let me tell you that I choose English as a study medium just 2 years ago. My grammar knowledge of English was good from school days in spite of being a Hindi medium student. But it didn’t help me to speak English. Even it make difficult for me to speak in English.

 

Lastly I would say that never under estimate yourself in the beginning because nobody is perfect. Even English teachers make mistakes at times. I have met many people who speak incorrect English (from the grammar point of view) but with confidence. So confidence is the key to achieve success and it comes with repetition. I am not supporting their mistakes but admiring them because at least they had courage to start. I hope at least a few people will inspire from this article and start to speak English.


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