This month’s language learning tips are provided by Tim Redmond, the assistant school director and Director of Studies at LSI Boston. Tim focuses on learning English outside the Classroom.
The biggest piece of advice that I can give to students who are studying English abroad is to take full advantage of the opportunity they have. In order for students to maximize their learning experience, they must spend their time wisely both inside and outside of the classroom. Many students focus on the time they spend inside of the classroom, which is of course important, but fail to fully utilize the free time that they have when they are not in class.
First, students who are studying English abroad have the unique opportunity to meet and study with students from many different countries. With this in mind, students should try to make friends with people from other countries, and practice speaking English with them during breaks, at lunchtime, after school, and on weekends. The more time that students spend trying to speak English outside of class, the faster they will be able to improve their speaking and listening skills.
Second, students should take advantage of the fact that they are studying in a country where they are surrounded by native English speakers. Whether they are eating at a restaurant, walking on the street, or spending time with their host family, students should focus on using their English skills outside of class. They should make a real effort to read, speak, and listen to English whenever they can.
Third, students should participate in after school activities, which include going to sporting events, visiting museums, attending concerts and local festivals, trying different types of food, taking city tours, and doing many different recreational activities. These activities give students an opportunity to practice their English in real life situations, make friends from different countries, and learn about the culture of the city and country where they are studying.
When it comes to learning English, it is important for students to realize that what they do outside of the classroom is just as important as what they do inside of the classroom. Students who practice speaking English outside of class, do their homework and really try to live the English language will get the most out of their learning experience.