As you begin to learn the basics of reading and writing English, you can begin the next step: entering into informal conversations to test out your new skills “for real.”
Some struggle to do this in person – those who do not speak English as their first language may find regional dialects and accents challenging. Fortunately, online conversations offer you the freedom and time to talk freely and confidently.
Communicating in English on internet sites is an excellent starting point, but where else can you sharpen your English skills online in a fun, safe, and friendly environment?
Here are just a few of the options:
Join a forum or group
Are you passionate or knowledgeable about a particular subject?
It could be anything–gaming, gardening, cooking, DIY, sports, etc. The point is that because you may already know about a particular topic, you will feel more comfortable talking about it.
Friendly forums feature like-minded people who want your input on a subject for discussion. Consequently, they will be patient with you as you chat and get to know them.
No matter what you love, there is undoubtedly an online forum that works for you – and where better than right here at Englishforums.com!
Play your favourite games
Action occurs so quickly in many modern console games that keeping up can be difficult.
However, with online games, the action can move much more slowly, which is perfect for improving your English.
Fortunately, these days you can play your preferred games for free in several places. As well as sports, adventure, and simulation games, you can even play your favourite casino games for free in ‘demo’ mode.
In particular, you can visit gaming sites with a chatroom style feature – some casinos and bingo sites offer this. Then, you get the best of both worlds: learning English communication skills and having fun!
Bury your head in a book
As any English language teacher will say, reading fiction is a fantastic way to improve your written English skills and comprehension of sentence structure.
In the past, that would have meant heading to the bookshop and tracking down the titles you want to read. But these days, it only takes a matter of minutes to download a book onto your portable device. Also, many public domain classics are available from sites such as Project Gutenberg for free!
When you read books, you will learn how popular words and sentences are used, but you will also learn specific turns of phrases that are unique to the English language and difficult to understand to the untrained eye and ear.
Stream videos, movies, and TV shows
One of the secret weapons that anyone learning English can use is TV subtitles.
All major broadcasters and streaming sites have a subtitles option that you can switch on or off. While you may be tempted to switch this to your native language, why not take the plunge and turn it to English instead?
As they improve your understanding of English, subtitles prove to be a really useful device. As you may already know, the theory of the language can be quite different from the reality of informal conversation, so watching plenty of TV and films is to be encouraged!
Solve a puzzle or two
One of the main concerns that English learners have is response time – they may struggle to first process the spoken words and then take extra time to deliver their response.
If you feel uncomfortable at this moment with your conversational language skills, you can still do some learning in the written aspects at your own pace.
You should also attempt online puzzles, be it crosswords, word searches, or something along those lines. This way, you can think critically in English, which is a surefire way to improve your skills.
These sorts of puzzles are usually free to play as well, so your learning experience doesn’t have to cost a single penny.
Sing us a tune
Karaoke, the source of side-splitting fun and embarrassment for decades!
It may sound crazy, but singing is a fantastic way to improve your English skills. Not only do you read the song lyrics as they appear on screen, but your brain also computes how to say these words in the English language.
Even if you’re a terrible singer, everybody gets a great laugh in the process!
You can buy many different karaoke products that won’t break the bank, and you can host parties with friends, family, or work colleagues on Zoom or Microsoft Teams, where you all show off your karaoke prowess.
Take an online course
You may already be taking a course in English, but if you have some spare time each week, studying another subject can help your language studies.
You may not want to take on a course of study that involves lots of writing in English, but you could apply for a course that is mainly practical work. This way, you can interact with your teachers and fellow students in English, which will improve your communication abilities. You may also secure a qualification that helps your career as well.
Many study courses are run online these days, be it wholly or in part, so why not use them to broaden your horizons while improving your English?
Join a book club
Did you know that there are online reading groups and book clubs designed specifically for people who speak English as their second language?
They sharpen your reading skills and enhance your verbal communications as you discuss what you have read and offer your opinions to the rest of the group.
Joining a book club, along with the other options on this list, is an excellent way to improve your English online–often for free!
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