It’s December, a month where we tend to reflect on the year that is almost over, reassessing tasks, goals, plans and with this in mind we prepare for next year’s achievements.
Somewhere in between all the evaluation of what was achieved and what needs to be improved on a business and on a personal level, the desire to enhance the English linguistic abilities takes center stage.
The tendency to create a wish list that includes everything that you want to achieve usually escapes realism and becomes a list with numerous tasks that in the end overwhelm you and ultimately you give up.
But what if we said that there are great ways to amp up your English over Christmas that are fun, achievable and bring your confidence higher?
- What’s your target?
Planning is what will get you closer to your goals. Start by setting a linguistic target and work towards achieving it.
A few ideas of what your target could be:
- learn 25 meeting phrases
- memorise 30 phrasal verbs, a mono-lingual dictionary is the ideal tool for this
- write and listen to the target language every day
- learn 20 vocabulary items that you could use in your field of expertise (terminology)
- learn how to use linking words for your business documents
and the list of ideas can go on…
Of course, remember to create accountability along with your targets. Finding a partner to work with is a great way to stay accountable and reach your targets.
2. Watch a film
A great way to start improving your English is watching films in the original language or using English subtitles, if you feel challenged. Some great films to put you in the festive mood can be found here. What better way to hone your listening skills while watching a great film!
3. Time to read!
Read one short article every day and while doing so jot down the following:
- one new lexical item (new vocabulary)
- one idiom, or one expression or one collocation
- one interesting sentence pattern
- one phrasal verb and find its synonym and antonym
Don’t start reading with the sole intention of discovering new linguistic items as the task will not be fun. Instead, find short articles with topics that you have real interest in and read them having pen and paper handy. Great sources for reading material can be found in our Useful Links page.
If however, you are a fan of books, then you won’t be able to put down Mark Haddon’s novel! A great British mystery novel.
4. What did they say?
If you wish to improve your listening skills, then you can start by listening to authentic speeches and imitate the speakers. How to go about it? Simply start by repeating short parts of the speech, then longer sentences. As you progress, try repeating or even summarizing the whole speech. Remember, the goal isn’t to sound exactly like the speaker or memorise the speaker’s speech word by word. The idea is to start articulating and communicating with others in English. Don’t worry about any grammar mistakes at this stage.
5. Technology at your service
If you have set a clear linguistic target, then with the help of technology you can reach your goal in a fun and effective way. You can improve your English “on the go” whenever or wherever you wish to do so. You can choose the best app to refine your English here.
Bonus tip 1: Go ahead and watch our #EnglishMiniBoosters video series; a collection of short videos designed to boost your confidence and transform the way you learn and use English. We love sharing our BEST TIPS with you and helping you reach your language goals.
Bonus tips 2: Add a Free Consultation with us to your wish list for Christmas, and ignite your motivation for improving your English with a personalised action plan.
Have a great Christmas Holiday, full of fun English practice activities!