Everyone studying English as a foreign or second language must wonder how long it’s going to take them to reach the desirable level of competence. The truth is, however, that it’s not a matter of how many weeks or months must pass before you progress from level X to Y. It’s all about how much time and effort you are prepared to put in in order to progress fast.
The good news is that there are lots of opportunities to use, practise and improve your language skills out there and ones that will allow you to make spectacular progress in English.
Regardless of whether you are learning the language by attending regular classes with a tutor, or you’re a self-taught student, you can use the ideas presented below to increase your language input and output, get exposure to different accents, apply your English in real life, test it or simply have fun while learning.
The language challenges I put together here will:
- allow you to practise both your receptive (reading, listening) and productive (speaking, writing) skills
- introduce a greater variety into your learning routine
- help you better organise your learning and keep you motivated
- give you exposure to different accents in English
- make you realise there’s more than one way to skin a cat and that learning can be an enjoyable journey
- give you a sense of achievement as you tick the challenges off the list
- speed up your progress in English
Here are some examples of challenges worth incorporating into your learning routine:
|Have a board game playing session with your friends. Good ones to choose are 5 Second Rule, Scrabble, Family Feud, Pictionary or any other lexical board game in English.|
Make it a rule: English only or lose your turn 🙂
|Research and read about UNESCO sites in your country. If you have been to any of them, write a review of it/them on Google reviews.|
|Watch your favourite film/serial/TV series in English. If you struggle to understand the script, put the subtitles on. Note down 7 new words/expressions you’d like to learn.|
|Write a postcard from your dream holiday. Say where you are, what you are doing and who is there with you. Add a picture on the front.|
|Grab a bunch of sticky notes and go to your kitchen. Say out loud the names of the objects you find there (furniture, kitchen utensils, food products, etc). For all the things you cannot name, look up the names, write them down on the sticky notes and attach the notes to the objects. Keep the notes there till you memorise the names. If it’s a long list of words, trim it down to 10. Repeat the routine with all the other rooms in your house, not necessarily on the same day 😉|
|Find and watch a documentary on YouTube about a person you admire-a scientist, an artist, a musician, a historical figure, etc. Write down five new facts you’ve learnt.|
|Record yourself giving a presentation about your hobby or an event that changed your life or your life from childhood to now. Put it away for a couple of days. Listen to it a few days later and see if you would have said anything differently.|
These are just some of the ideas.
I’ve written down 26 and put them together in a handy mini e-book for your convenience. You can print it out and cross out the challenges as you go.
Click here to download the e-book for free and have fun with English!
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