SPEAK right with SAKEENAH’WRITES 006(6 STEPS TO IMPROVE YOUR ENGLISH AS NON-NATIVE ENGLISH Speaker)
SHOMOLU has come again, but this time around, his sincerity impressed me.
SHOMOLU: Hey Sekinah, it’s been a while. How have you been? I need your help on something, and I know that you would be the best person to assist me.
ME: On God! Anyway what’s that dear?
SHOMOLU: I am having a job interview in few days time and one of the requirements is that I should know how to express myself properly in English, and you of all people can testify to how frequently I make English blunders. I no wan go embarrass myself for there. Can you please tell me how I can improve my English at least for interview sake abeg.
ME: Number 1, it is not “I AM HAVING” but “I WOULD BE HAVING”. Anyway, chillax, I get it. I will give you some practical steps you can use to improve your English.
6 STEPS TO IMPROVE YOUR ENGLISH AS A NON-NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKER:
English is the world’s lingua franca, a common language that people with different native languages can use to communicate. Still it is an undisputable fact that for a NON-NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKER, speaking it fluently or understanding it can be exhausting and cheezy.
Learning a new language is like learning how to play a new musical instrument. You won’t know how to play the guitar the first time you pick it up. You will have to learn little by little every single day so that over time you can become more fluent.
The best way to learn any language is to find ways to incorporate that language into your daily life.
So, are you a NON-NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKER like SHOMOLU who wants to improve his English language skills, whether it’s for reading, writing, interviews or speaking purpose, you are in the right place. In this article, I will share with you my 6 most easiest and practical steps you can take to improve your English.
1. IDENTIFY YOUR “WHY(PURPOSE)” OF LEARNING ENGLISH: There’s a saying that, “a life lives on purpose is a life marked for great results, but a life lived without a purpose, is a life lived in vain.” Yes.
Just like you cannot apply for admission into a university without knowing WHY you want to study in that university, likewise you need to first and foremost DISCOVER WHY YOU WANT TO LEARN OR IMPROVE YOUR ENGLISH before venturing into it. Knowing your WHY not just as a NON-NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKER, but as a human in general will not only help you remain consistent in your journey, but will also be a push factor that will constantly motivate you to keep pushing when the journey gets boring or tough. So, if you are intentional about improving your English, then the first thing you need to do is “DISCOVER YOUR WHY.”
2. SPEAK THE RUBBISH YOU KNOW: The second effective step to improve your English is to speak whatever gibberish English that comes to your head. Nobody’s perfect, and our imperfections are what makes us UNIQUE. Not just that, there is always a stage in our lives where the only perfect thing we know how to DO OR SAY is RUBBISH, but the most amazing fact about this is that, those RUBBISH or MISTAKES we once DID or SPOKE with so much joy are what led us into being the ILLUSTRIOUS, SENSIBLE, AND SELF-CONSCIOUS INDIVIDUALS WE ARE TODAY.
So, in order to improve your English, don’t force yourself to speak what you don’t know or understand, don’t be embarrassed when you speak the wrong English, be open to mistakes, speak whatever rubbish you know so that others can correct you, and gradually, you will notice that those incessant corrections have led to tremendous improvements in your English, as well as your overall confidence as a speaker.
3. LISTEN ATTENTIVELY TO AND WATCH HOW NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKERS SPEAK: The next step to take in order to improve your English is to cultivate the habit of LISTENING ATTENTIVELY TO AND WATCHING HOW NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKERS SPEAK. As a NON-NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKER, English is NOT your mother tongue, so if you really want to speak like the real owners of ENGLISH LANGUAGE, then you need to LOVE LISTENING TO HOW THEY SPEAK.
Consistently and sincerely listening to native English speakers be it through podcast or YouTube videos, will gradually help you correct your English mistakes and improve your overall English speaking skills.
4. MAKE THE DICTIONARY YOUR BEST FRIEND: Just like you cannot know how to cook a dish that is alien to your tribe without using a cooking guide or watching videos on how to cook that particular dish, likewise YOU CAN NEVER know how to speak the correct English without CONSTANTLY using or CONSULTING a dictionary.
The more you consciously consult your DICTIONARY for even the smallest word, the more you will improve on your English speaking skills and master the art of communicating effectively in English.
5. PRACTICE SPEAKING FLUENTLY WITH THOSE AROUND YOU: Another practical and interesting way to improve your English is to practice English speaking with those around you. In order to do this, you need to confidently challenge yourself to speak the little English you know on a normal pace with people who have better knowledge of English than you. Participate in English language workshops, join English classes and consistently speak English even when you are tempted to speak your mother tongue or the language you were trained with.
This will help boost your speaking confidence, as well as improve your overall English speaking skills.
6. DO A DAILY MIRROR PRACTICE: One of the best ways to become better at anything especially as a public speaker in any language is to speak in front of the mirror regularly. Speaking in front of the mirror will bring to your attention those mistakes and areas you need to work on as a speaker, and will in turn boost your speaking confidence.
With these 6 steps, I believe that you are ready to kick-start your journey to improving your English speaking skills.
SHOMULU: Thank you very much jare, I owe you one.