Learning English

This page contain (or will contain in the near future) few words about my approach to improving my english.

When to learn english?

There are many occasions when and where to learn and improve knowledge of foreign language(s). The most common are the english classes at school, various courses, language schools and similar. The man spends some time on a dedicated place, where the the teachers lead the group and hand his idea what is the foreign language on them. The students spend their time to prepare for the classes, either at home or during short breaks within the workhours etc.

Because I regard myself as both rather lazy and very busy person, I try to fing different approaches - I want to make the best of the time and effort when I use the language in everydays work and to turn profit the time that is useless to do anythng else otherwise. An example of the latter is the time spend in public transportation during commuting to school or work.

There is another aspect, called motivation. For some people the motivation to get better in a foreing language is strong enough, for some (often including myself) not. So my first conlusion is: enjoy and learn together.

But let me get back to the moment when I use foreign as a communication mean necessary for my work. As a PhD student, these are more than common. I am supposed to read the papers, articles and reports made by others to get both an overview of the state-of-the-art and particular detail knowledge on my studyfield. Then I'm supposed to develop my own contribution to the research on the particular field in both written and spoken way. I often meet a word, phrase or language construct that I'm nt familiar with. One can either use some kind of feeling to estimate the meaning or spend an additional effort to explore the faced „language challenge“. The first one is much more convenient, the latter is much more effective from the learner's point of view. So my second conclusion is: It is worth spending an extra effort when using english to improve language skills instead of just using it.

And now the „useless“ time periods. I used to read the books a lot in my free time (it was many years ago when I actually had some free time:). I used to be able to read a 500 pages of an interesting novel in two or three evenings. Few years ago I purchased a cheap palmtop computer, browsed the internet for a few books and started to read when sitting and waiting till the bus takes me from point A to point B. Later I had equipped my brand new handy with a simple dictionary and started to read books in english. And look, together with a small effort needed to find unknown words in the dictionary I can both enjoy reading a book and improve my language skills . And I do. Waiting for a meeting, sitting in a bus or just want a small break, my library is ready to provide me a few pages of my joy.

Just a few days ago I've discovered another solution that is useful for the moments when I'm for example too tired for reading. You can buy an interesting book recorded by profesional narrator or download a bunch of free english lesson (e.g. from BBC learning english), pick your discman or MP3 player and just listen. Very useful for driving, invigilating etc.

Another interesting approach is to choose a field of interest and discuss about it on the internet. For example I'm interesting in un*x operating systems and their administration: From time to time I browse my favorite „linux help and support“ forum and help another linux users to solve their problems.

skola/english/learning_english.txt · Poslední úprava: 2007/10/05 01:28 autor: srerucha