How do you prefer to study English? When you know your personal learning style, you can focus on the activities and methods which are best for you and your time limits.
One question to ask yourself is how you like to interact with other people.
Here are some activities that suit your personality – depending on how extrovert or introvert you are.
Question: How sociable are you?
Choose the best answer for you, then see the suggestions:
a) You like being with other people. You’re quite extrovert and you like company. When you’re with other people you have lots of energy.
b) You need to be on your own to think or be creative. You’re quite introverted and you feel more focussed and have more energy when you’re alone.
c) You’re a mix of both extrovert and introvert.
Suggestions for extroverts (answer A)
Because you’re an extrovert, find opportunities to practise with others. For example:
In your business / work life
Meet and connect with international colleagues. If you don’t already have this opportunity, ask to get involved with international projects.
Attend company meetings and presentations (even on Zoom). Go to industry conferences and networking events (even virtual ones.)
In your personal life
Get involved in clubs and voluntary activities. Join choirs, and interest groups, such as film or book clubs. You can find plenty of these online.
Make sure you get plenty of speaking practice with friends and family.
It’s really useful to give yourself “alone” time to reflect on what you’re learning. Make a note of new words and phrases and think about how you can use them next time you speak.
But also remember to give yourself time to reflect and improve. Reading for new vocabulary is a great activity and you’ll also benefit from regular listening activities to help you with your pronunciation.
Suggestions for introverts (Answer B)
Because you’re an introvert, any activities where you can reflect and learn on your own would be useful for you. For example:
Read newspapers, work-related articles, books, etc. Make a note of new vocabulary, then practise using it in your own sentences.
Journal your learning experiences and everyday life. Even 5-10 minutes a day is useful reflection and English writing practice.
Take self-study courses – especially those which give you time to reflect on what you’re learning.
Listen to podcasts on subjects that interest you. Most also have the shownotes which help you with understanding.
But don’t forget the importance of speaking with others!
Limit yourself to just ten minutes in conversations and meetings if necessary.
English lessons in small groups online can also help, as you aren’t always in the spotlight.
Finally, you might find that working with a teacher (even just once or twice a month) will show you what to focus on in your learning.
Suggestions for answer C
When you’re a mix of both extrovert and introvert, you can find a balance of activities that suit you depending on your mood. You can do these activities in small groups, on your own, or with one other person, such as a “study buddy” – someone who helps you to stay on track.
You can even set up a weekly schedule to help keep you motivated. For example:
Monday – read a short article. Find three new words to practise and write your own examples. You can use a notebook or write on index cards to create flashcards.
Tuesday – listen to a podcast. Read the shownotes (= tapescript). Repeat some of the sentences for extra pronunciation practice. The following week, you could listen to a song, or watch 5-10 minutes of a TV show or film.
Wednesday – review new vocabulary and phrases from Monday’s reading. Do you still remember them? Check the new words from the previous week as well.
Thursday – use a textbook or grammar book to review or learn new grammar. Try some grammar exercises online.
Friday – focus on speaking. You can do this in different ways: find a speaking opportunity at work or in your personal life; or “narrate” your day or week. In this activity, you speak to yourself and say what you did, how you felt, etc.
Saturday / Sunday – journal. You can do this either through writing or speaking. How did you feel about your English learning this week? What were your successes? What do you need to focus on most in the following week?
Speaking in small groups – a great way to get fluent!
The only way to become more fluent and confident in English is through speaking regularly.
You can do this in the English Fluency Club – the place where you’ll transform your English from shy to confident!
* Speaking lessons in small groups mean you have a lot of “speaking time”
* Speaking with people from around the world means you improve your listening and understanding
* A supportive atmosphere gives you the confidence to speak
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