English is the most widely used language in the world, and the ability to communicate in it is essential in many careers, particularly business and communications. Learn English as Second Language with a competent and qualified teacher and improve your career prospects enormously. There are many countries in which you can study, such as The United Kingdom, Ireland, The United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Alternatively, you can find a good school in your own country and improve your skills without having to travel.
Undoubtedly the best way to learn a foreign tongue is to live in a country where it is spoken and immerse yourself in the culture. There are numerous language schools throughout the English speaking world and they offer students the chance not only to become proficient speakers but also to have a full cultural experience.
It is common for new students to be placed with a homestay family with whom they must make an effort to communicate. Schools also organise social events, such as visits to restaurants and local places of interest. This encourages students to mix and practise speaking with people from many different backgrounds. To find a school, search online for information on services, entry requirements and fees.
Although staying in a foreign country is an amazing experience, it is not affordable or practical for everyone. In most countries, there are classes available, often in the evening to accommodate those students with full-time work. Even if you are planning to travel, it is a good idea to attend at least a short course before you go, especially if you haven’t studied English for a long time.
The most important factor in a successful learning experience is the quality of the teacher. Ideally, your teacher should be a native speaker, that is someone for whom English is the first language. If your teacher is not a native speaker, he or she must have spoken English for several years and be extremely fluent. This is essential so they can model the language accurately, using the correct grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation.
Your teacher should also be knowledgeable, friendly and well-organised. Classes ought to cover a variety of topics and skills, particularly grammar, vocabulary, speaking, listening, reading and writing. You should have the opportunity to talk and interact with the other students as much as possible. There needs to be lots of different activities and resources used in the lesson and your teacher must always give you helpful feedback and correct your errors. Don’t be afraid to ask questions if you are confused and don’t worry about making mistakes. Just try your best and speak as much as you can.
Classes are usually organised into the following levels: beginner, elementary, pre-intermediate, intermediate, upper intermediate and advanced. By pre-intermediate you should be able to hold a basic conversation and by intermediate be able to speak about a lot of different topics reasonably easily. You will move on when your teacher thinks you are ready to cope with the next level. You may get a test occasionally to determine the right class for you.
Speaking English well is one of the best skills you can acquire, so whether you are an absolute beginner or just need to improve a little, enroll in a class and start learning.