How can I improve my english-abilities?

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Stefan.L
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How can I improve my english-abilities?

Beitrag von Stefan.L »

Hello!

I am new here, and I wanted to ask how I can improve my english-abilities. I am writing this text in english, so that you know my skills.
But first something about my person:

My Name is Stefan and I am taking my A-Levels. Now, I am at the beginning and my english isn´t as good as it should be.
I was never really bad but now I am realising that I have to work a lot. In the future I want to work work with computers. I want to write programms and such things...
And I want to live in America or in the UK for a couple of years in the future, and because of that I have to improve my english skills.

I had searched about that and I found this examples:
1) to learn the vokabulary in my english book
2) to watch movies or series in english (first with subtitles an later without)
3) to read books in english
4) to chat with native speakers

What do you think about these examples? And if they are good, I want to ask some questions about these:
1) I don´t have questions for this point xD

2) Do you know any "easy" series? I had tried this with "Prison Break", but it is so difficult to understand what they say. And I didn`t knew a half of the vocabulary. I only sat there and googled the words :D

3) Same question: Do you know good books? I especially like the horror genre.

4) Do you know a forum where I can chat with native speakers. I don´t know where I can find somebody :D

Thanks for reading this horrible text :D I look forward to your answers. ( BTW: It took me 30 minutes to write this little text. I NEED HELP :DD )




Delfino
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Re: How can I improve my english-abilities?

Beitrag von Delfino »

Stefan.L hat geschrieben:Hello!

I am new here, and I wanted to ask you how I can improve my English skills. I am writing this text in English,
so that you know the level of my skills.

But first something about myself:

My Name is Stefan, and I am doing my A-Levels.
Although I am only beginning now, my English isn't as good as it should be.
I was never really bad, but I am realising now that I have to work a lot more to improve my skills.
In the future I want to work work with computers.
I want to write programms and such things...
And I want to live in America or in the UK for a couple of years in the future,
and therefore, I have to improve my English skills.

I researched this a bit, and I found these examples:

1) Learn the vokabulary in my English books
2) Watch movies or series in English (first with subtitles an later without)
3) Read books in English
4) Chat with native speakers

What do you think about these examples?
And if they are good, I want to ask some questions about these:

1) So far I don't have any questions about this point. xD

2) Do you know any "easy" tv series?
I tried this with "Prison Break", but it was so difficult to understand what they say.
And I didn't know half of the vocabulary. I only sat there and googled the words. :D

3) Same question: Do you know good books? I especially like the horror genre.

4) Do you know a forum where I can chat with native speakers?
I don't know where I can find somebody. :D

Thanks for reading this horrible text. :D I look forward to your answers.
BTW: It took me 30 minutes to write this little text. I need help. :D
:watch: Punctuation is not to be replaced by smiles. No capitalisation / shouting ...

Prison Break was fun to watch as I didn't need to use subtitles or Google.
Believe me, you can get there too. Unfortunately, you may not have the time
to only use passive learning to improve your vocabulary in the coming years.

Easy stuff is fun, but there needs to be a challenge to gain anything.


1) ftopic2481.html
2) http://www.imdb.com
3) http://www.goodreads.com


It is important that you keep track of the words you looked up.
Those phrases are the ones you will have to learn later on.

Do not try to just remember the literal translation of words,
but a complete sentence/phrase of each of the meanings
a word can be used as...
...is supplied without liability.
IELTS 7 Good user: operational command, occasional inaccuracies

Lisa Stiefel
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Re: How can I improve my english-abilities?

Beitrag von Lisa Stiefel »

Hi Stefan,

It sounds to me like you're really getting active with your learning! That's great, and I think it's definitely the best thing you can do in order to improve. Don't worry if it takes you a bit longer to write a short text- that's perfectly normal. Just be patient with yourself and continue practicing, over time you'll naturally speed up. If you're interested in watching TV series or films, I suggest starting out with only a short clip of not more than 5 minutes. You can watch it again and again if you need to. Youtube is great for this. Also be sure to pick a clip that's on a topic you're interested in, so that you also don't mind watching the same one again and again. You might also want to first google the topic, look for articles and read them- this way you can familiarize yourself with a range of vocabulary that is connected to the topic. When you listen as a next step, you'll be more likely to understand better.

Most importantly, have fun! :)
Lisa Stiefel
English Language Teacher

Ben is nutz
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Re: How can I improve my english-abilities?

Beitrag von Ben is nutz »

I think practicing songs can also help in the 4 areas you've described.  Learning songs with English lyrics has a similar advantage discussed in Lisa's comment about watching short video clips (5 minutes or less): their brevity makes them manageable for practice.

However, an additional advantage of a song is that it is more natural to recite it when you're away form other language materials.  You can print a bilingual copy of the song's lyrics and keep it folded in your pocket, and study it very conveniently until you know all the verses by heart.  Once you know it by heart, you can "listen" to it in your head all day long, and if you wish, sing it out loud.  Each time you do this, you will further deepen your understanding of the language used in the song until you are aware of all its subtle nuances.  It would be akin to mastering a piece of music so thoroughly that you understand its every note.  The more you do this, the more familiar you will be with the English you may encounter in a new song, a book, in an English conversation, etc...

Returning to each of the 4 areas of language study you mentioned, listed from 1-4:
1. It will help you practice vocabulary and phrasal constructions in English. 
2a. It can improve your listening skills for the variety of English that is used in the song, thereby helping you to understand tv series or movies in the same variety of English more easily. 
2b. Since every song has a theme and a composer, it will add to your repertoire of content you have explored in English, which you can further explore.  For example, I've been recently learning the song "Aber Bitte mit Sahne" by Udo Jürgens.  Now that I've been acquainted with his music, I may wish to watch a video interview with him and can better understand what he might be talking about.
3.  Same advantage as 2b, but applied to reading texts.
4a. Learning English songs can help you learn more about the culture of English speakers, so that you will have more to talk about if you meet an English speaker.
4b. Practicing the English accent used in the song you are learning can help you speak and listen to an English speaker who uses the same accent.
Meine Muttersprache ist Englisch.Wenn ich mache einen Fehler auf Deutsch,bitte korrigieren Sie mich.

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