Everyone has days when they feel like relaxing. But just because you’re staying in doesn’t mean you can’t be improving your English.
Our Harvest English Institute tutors will all tell you that some of your favorite forms of entertainment are a great way to practice reading and understanding English. The next time you feel like kicking back with a movie, listening to your favorite music, or curling up with a good book, these tips can help you improve your English while enjoying yourself!
Watch Movies and TV to Improve Your English
Everyone knows that many of the biggest films in the world are made in the United States. So why not make films part of practicing your English?
Watching movies and television is a good way to hear how people speak in everyday life instead of in a classroom. Actors use different accents, idioms and might speak more quickly than your fellow students. The great thing about watching a movie is that you can rewind if you miss a line!
One good trick for using movies to improve your English is to watch films you’re already familiar with. If you watch a film you know well without dubbing or subtitles you don’t have to worry about following the plot; you can focus just on what the characters are saying.
Movies in your native language can also help. Next time you watch a favorite film from your own country, turn on English subtitles. A good translation can help you learn new words and practice reading in English.
Listen to Music in English
Whether you want to relax or you’re ready to dance, listening to American music is a great way to surround yourself with the language.
Listening to different types of music can help learn about American culture, and music is often filled with slang words and phrases you won’t learn in class. The rhythm, rhymes, and melody of a song can make it easier to remember the words and how they’re said. And, of course, singing along is excellent practice!
Read a Book or Magazine in English
It’s probably no surprise that reading in English helps you learn the language. But that doesn’t mean you need to only focus on your academic books.
Reading a magazine is an easy way to brush up on your English comprehension. Magazines often use fairly simple vocabulary, and reading about a subject you like makes it easier to follow along. Whether you want to read about fashion or cars, American bookstores will have a magazine that is sure to interest you.
Reading a whole book in English might seem intimidating, but if you like to read it can be a fun way to improve your vocabulary. Choose an English translation of a favorite story, or challenge yourself with a new novel. See how far you can get before looking up an unfamiliar word!
And if you are shopping for new books or magazines, check out our blog on practicing English while you shop to make the most of your trip!
Whatever your favorite kind of entertainment, you can easily turn your downtime into a learning opportunity. Watching movies, listening to music, and reading are all wonderful ways to improve your English skills and learn about American culture.