Learning English Through the Real World

Hello everyone,

When you want to learn a new language like English, textbooks are a great place to start.

They teach you important words, grammar rules, and how to make sentences.

But just using textbooks can make learning feel boring and not like how people really talk and communicate in the real world.

The best way to really understand and learn English is to surround yourself with it through things like TV shows, movies, and talking to real people.

This lesson will show you fun and effective ways to learn and practice English that go beyond just reading from a textbook.

Watching TV shows and movies

Watching TV shows and movies is one of the most enjoyable ways to learn.

You can learn new words and how to say them correctly while also being entertained.

When you first start, try watching shows with easier conversations like sitcoms or shows for kids.

As you get better, you can watch movies, dramas, reality shows, and more.

Make sure to turn on English subtitles or closed captions when you watch.

This way, you can read along and connect the words you see to how they sound.

Pause the show or movie often to say out loud any phrases you don’t understand.

If you come across slang or idioms you don’t know, look them up.

It’s also helpful to watch the same shows or movies more than once.

This helps you remember new words, expressions, and how people talk.

Plus, you might notice new things each time you watch.

Listening to music and audio

Listening to music and audio is another great way to learn English.

Singing along to songs can help you practice how to say words, the rhythm, and the way sentences go up and down.

Start with songs made for kids that have simple lyrics.

Then try popular songs that repeat catchy phrases.

Once you can sing the lyrics well, look up what they really mean.

English music often has hidden meanings, jokes, and references to explore.

You can even study poetry and different ways words are used in song lyrics.

Listening to audiobooks and podcasts

Listening to audiobooks and podcasts is a fantastic way to improve your listening skills.

It’s important to choose topics that interest you so that you stay motivated.

Podcasts are especially great because they use conversational language, just like how people speak in real life.

Explore more topics:


Reading is another great way to improve your English skills.

While textbooks are more formal, books, magazines, and websites offer a variety of writing styles.

You can read news articles, celebrity bios, blogs, Instagram captions, social media comments, and even fairy tales.

Being exposed to different types of writing in English is really valuable.

Start by reading children’s books or books that have been simplified for English learners.

As you get better, you can move on to young adult novels, mainstream fiction, and non-fiction books.

If you come across words or phrases you don’t know, make a list and review them later.

Reading out loud can also help with your pronunciation and understanding how written English sounds when spoken.

Don’t be afraid to use an online dictionary or translation tool if you get stuck.

The internet is a great resource for English videos. YouTube, in particular, has a lot of content for language learners.

You can find English lessons, tutorials, product reviews, video blogs, educational channels, comedy skits, viral videos, and even music video lyrics.

Don’t forget to check out the comment sections too.

They can show you more casual English writing and you can even practice having conversations by responding to comments.

Many online videos also have searchable transcripts or captions in English, which can make it easier for you to follow along and learn from them.

Apps and Games for Fun Practice

Nowadays, there are tons of cool language learning apps and games that make practicing feel like playing.

They’re usually pretty cheap or even free. Some popular choices include:

Duolingo – It’s like playing games while learning bite-sized lessons.

Babbel – You can improve your pronunciation with speech recognition.

Clozemaster – Practice filling in the blanks in sentences.

Anki – Use digital flashcards to study vocabulary.

Vocabulary.com – Enjoy fun dictionary games and activities.

By using these apps for just 10-15 minutes a day, you can easily reinforce your English skills whenever you have some free time.

Plus, many of them let you keep track of your progress and achievements over time.

Real-Life Conversation Practice

To really master speaking and understanding English, it’s super helpful to surround yourself with as much English as possible.

You can do this by watching movies, reading books, and listening to music in English.

But nothing beats practicing with real people.

If you live near a university or an area with lots of English speakers, try finding local language exchange meetups.

These are casual get-togethers where you can chat in English with native speakers who also want to practice your language.

If going out isn’t an option, you can try virtual conversation exchanges through apps like Tandem, Hellotalk, or Bilingua.

These apps let you video chat for free with English speakers from all around the world.

Remember, it’s totally normal to make mistakes when learning.

So don’t be afraid to ask questions if you don’t understand something.

And don’t just focus on learning new words – it’s also important to work on skills like making eye contact, taking turns, and using body language.

Immerse Yourself Every Day

The best advice for learning English beyond textbooks is to surround yourself with it every day.

Even small efforts add up over time.

Here are some easy ideas to try:

Change the language settings on your phone, computer, or TV to English.

Use sticky notes to label household objects in English.

Watch English music videos while getting ready.

Listen to an English podcast during your commute.

Read a few pages of an English book before going to bed.

Send emails or texts in English to friends who are also learning it.

Keep an English diary or journal.

The more you incorporate real English into your daily routines, the faster you’ll improve.

Before you know it, hearing and reading English will become second nature.

Get Creative with the Language

Don’t just be a passive observer – participate!

Getting creative and producing your own English writing or speech is an amazing way to speed up your skills.

It allows you to have fun while putting into practice everything you’ve learned.

For example, you could start an English blog or YouTube channel where you post videos of yourself doing activities, skits, tutorials, or vlogs.

Even creating silly songs, poems, or short stories in English is great practice.

When you create your own English content, you’ll constantly be looking up words, phrases, and grammar rules.

This will deepen your overall understanding of the language.

Benefits Beyond Just Language

While your main goal may be improving your English abilities, immersing yourself in movies, books, music, and media from the English-speaking world also exposes you to new cultures, perspectives, and ways of life.

You’ll learn about different traditions, humor, social norms, famous figures, and historical contexts.

This broader cultural knowledge enhances your appreciation for the richness within the English language.

The Journey is Totally Worth It

Learning a new language by fully immersing yourself in it can be a bit challenging.

Sometimes, you might feel confused or overwhelmed, but don’t worry!

The key is to stick with it and be patient.

If you feel like your progress is slower than you expected, don’t let it discourage you.

Instead, celebrate the small victories along the way.

Remember, the more you expose yourself to quality English, the better you’ll become at it.

The long-term benefits of learning English are definitely worth the effort.

Being able to speak one of the most widely spoken languages in the world opens up so many opportunities for your future.

It can lead to great careers, educational opportunities, new friendships, and a whole world of entertainment.

So, don’t just limit yourself to textbooks.

Explore English in different ways!

Have fun by immersing yourself in English media, culture, and everyday conversations.

These are the paths that will lead you to true mastery of the language.

Keep going!


Check out these awesome English learning books I recommend:

Oxford Practical English Usage

Conversation Skills for All Occasions


How to Talk to Anyone


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