Learning to speak and write good English is a very difficult task. English is, after all, one of the hardest languages to learn because there are so many oddities in the language. You can learn a grammar rule and then discover that it has lots of exceptions. Spelling rules are like this too. For example there is the basic rule that all learners are taught: 'I' before 'E' except after 'C' ~ except sometimes. Take the words: their, weigh, neighbour. Do you see what I mean? Difficult, isn't it? First of all you will need to know about the different 'particles' that go together to build the language. These are called parts of speech: Nouns: for naming things. Pronouns: stand in place of nouns, like he, she, it, etc. Verbs: doing words. Adverbs: words that describe verb, like quickly, slowly, softly. Adjectives: words that describe nouns, like blue, green, soft, hard. Preposition: these tell you where things are in relation to others. Examples: to, of, in, above, etc Conjunctions: joining words, like and, but, also, and others. Once you have learnt this you can start putting it all together and using sentences. This is where you might need the help of a tutor who can identify and remedy any difficulties you are having with your studies. Learning on your own is difficult especially if you have no one to ask for help. The services of a tutor are essential if you want to be able to speak clear, fluent, unaccented English, just like a native speaker. Podcasts are an ideal way to listen to English. Don't try to understand every word when you listen. Just listen for the words you do know and try to work the rest out. You will be amazed at how much you know. Use the services of a tutor to improve pronunciation and fluency and most all, to build your confidence. A few short sessions every week are the best way to do this, if you can find a tutor who will allow you to break an hour long session in three twenty minute ones during the week that is by far the best way to learn. It is better to practise your English little and often, rather studying for long periods. Repetition is the fastest and most efficient way to learn. Make yourself a private study timetable and learn all the vocabulary and grammar that you can through self study. That way the time you pay for with your tutor will be more productive as you will be able to practise your new vocabulary and grammar and ask any questions you might have. Remember that if you hire a tutor, it's your tutorial, you are paying for it, so you can say how you want it to run. If you want conversation, or need help with writing, then say so. Most of all, enjoy your studies. If it's fun you will learn more. Copyright: Louie Jerome

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