Aspects of new language learning, such as reading, writing, speaking, listening and grammar are all necessary elements that need to be improved if a speaker wants to reach a higher goal in foreign language acquisition.
This article focuses on writing and grammar, and more information can be found about speaking and reading in other similar essays by the writer. The skills of language can be worked on separately and in an integrated form; both are important to increase accuracy and fluency.
Writing Practice Ideas for ESL Students
The following suggestions can help self-studying students work on activities that will help them improve through creative ideas that will be enjoyable as well as beneficial.
- Read a page from a book and then make up the next part of the story and write a page.
- Choose a picture of a family from a magazine, and write about all the characters.
- Find a picture of a country scene and describe it
- Choose ten random words from the dictionary and write a few paragraphs of a story using all the words.
- After speaking to someone in the family, try writing everything they said.
- Keep a journal and ensure that an entry is made each day
- Write a journal for a few days through the eyes of a pet living in your home
- Watch a documentary and then write a summary of its contents
- Write a children’s story
- Listen to the news and then write a newspaper article about that topic.
Grammar Practice Ideas for ESL Students
Improving in grammar without the help of a teacher or private tutor to explain is difficult. If students have completed a textbook, it is important to choose exercises from the book and read over the rules, and look over exercises that were done in the classroom. Review becomes the best way to keep up and internalize whatever was learned in the classroom.
As grammar is the building structure behind every sentence spoken or written, the activities of reading and speaking will strengthen use and understanding of the structure of the new language.
Here are some Ideas to practice grammar:
- Read a page of English and underline the nouns.
- Read an article from the newspaper and highlight the verbs.
- Listen to a documentary and write down words or structures that are not understood, and ask a teacher or friend for an explanation.
- Review a page from a grammar textbook and make up some sentences to practice the specific structure chosen.
- Search on the Internet for a structure already learned, for example, The Present Progressive, and read up on it to refresh your information and get new examples.
- Write an essay in the past tense. Then, rewrite it in the future, present, present progressive, or any other tense needing review.
- Write dialogs using only the present tense, past, future or any tense of interest.
Writing and grammar practice are just two components of the English language discussed in this article and should be studied alongside those for speaking and listening which are essential to strengthen competence in a new language. Once language studies have been completed, the only way to keep up the level already attained and hopefully to improve even more, is for learners to work on their own. The process of learning a new language includes understanding, absorption, retention and practicing by using the new language in real life situations.