10 Fun & Easy Ways to Learn English Faster

We’ve all heard a thousand times that the only way to really learn English is to be totally immersed in the language, completely surrounded by it everywhere you go. But we wanted to go deeperthan that and find quick and easy ways to start getting immersed. So our research team put together 10 steps that you can follow, in this order, to make learning English faster and a whole lot more fun.
#1: Find some English radio stations and podcasts in iTunes
There are tons of podcasts about all topics imaginable these days: entertainment, politics, news. A good way to find one is to look for a podcast from a TV channel you usually watch in your cable TV. Look for one that interests you and listen to it in your car while driving. You’ll train your ear that way!
#2: Check out the Top Videos on YouTube and watch for at least a few minutes
Most of them are hilarious! It will be so worth it. Try looking at the comments to pick up some words and sentences you aren’t familiar with, but be careful there is all kinds of bizarre stuff in YouTube comments.
#3: Talk and sing to yourself in English
When you are alone at home, or of course in the shower, start talking! Sing a song in English the way it sounds to you, talk about the weather or any other topic. Do this frequently and your pronunciation will drastically improve – guaranteed!
4#: Do you have an English-speaking idol? Go to YouTube and watch all of his/her interviews in English
You can spend hours doing that listening to interviews and it sure won’t feel like studying. But it is! It helps you a great deal.
5#: Sit near people who are speaking English on the bus or in the park. Listen in…
Okay now don’t be a creepy eavesdropper! But, see what words you can pick up and listen to the flow of the conversation. How much did you understand? What general topic were they talking about? Did you hear an interesting word you might want to look up after?
#6: Pay attention to billboards, signs, advertisements, magazine stands and establishment names
Look and think about what these ads mean. How many words do you recognize? Did you see that same word elsewhere? Make up sentences about what you’re seeing.
#7: Love music? Try figuring out the words/lyrics of your favorite songs
Watch video clips with lyrics on YouTube and sing along. Read the translation and build up your vocabulary. Listen to “clean” versions of songs and try to figure out what dirty words were taken out. It’s fun!
#8: Watch TV clips, episodes or soap operas in English
It doesn’t matter if you don’t understand what they’re saying, watch anyway! Try to understand why something is funny or sad . If the joke is related to the word itself, then maybe that is why the joke does not make sense in your native language. What would be the best translation into your language then?
#9: Engage in a conversation on Facebook with friends who post in English
When you have English speakers in your timeline, you see their posts daily and get inside information about news and viral videos in English. Your friends can be your teachers! Their timeline basically sort out the best material for you to study.
#10: Produce, produce, produce. No matter how shy you are or how much you don’t “get” English, force yourself to speak
Help out a tourist who looks lost. They won’t mind you struggling with the language while you’re doing them a favor! After class, talk to your teacher about how things are going and what you need help with in English. When traveling, ask around for directions in English, even if you don’t need them! Try purchasing things online and by phone, or using customer support in English.

It does not matter if you talk slowly, you are learning, that’s only natural!
BONUS TIP: When seeing a new movie look up the original title on IMDB.com
The translation sometimes does not correspond directly to the original. Find out what the original title really means. Ask yourself how the translation makes sense.  What is the relation to the movie? You will never forget a new word that once it’s associated with an unforgettable movie. Works every time!
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Halloween

History of Halloween

Halloween falls on October 31st each year in North America and other parts of the world. What do you know about Halloween? Do you celebrate it in your country? Here is a little history about it.  Vocabulary

to evolve (v)– to change little by little

spirit (n)– ghost, some people believe the spirit and body separate when a person dies

holy (adj)– sacred, very good, related to religion. Hallow comes from the word holy.

saint (n)– an honored, holy person

evil (adj)– very, very bad

lantern (n)– lamp or enclosed light that can be carried around

turnip (n)– a purple and white vegetable that grows in the ground

Like many other holidays, Halloween has evolved and changed throughout history. Over 2,000 years ago people called the Celts lived in what is now Ireland, the UK, and parts of Northern France. November 1 was their New Year’s Day. They believed that the night before the New Year (October 31) was a time when the living and the dead came together.

More than a thousand years ago the Christian church named November 1 All Saints Day (also called All Hallows.) This was a special holy day to honor the saints and other people who died for their religion. The night before All Hallows was called Hallows Eve. Later the name was changed to Halloween.

Like the Celts, the Europeans of that time also believed that the spirits of the dead would visit the earth on Halloween. They worried that evil spirits would cause problems or hurt them. So on that night people wore costumes that looked like ghosts or other evil creatures. They thought if they dressed like that, the spirits would think they were also dead and not harm them.

The tradition of Halloween was carried to America by the immigrating Europeans. Some of the traditions changed a little, though. For example, on Halloween in Europe some people would carry lanterns made from turnips. In America, pumpkins were more common. So people began putting candles inside them and using them as lanterns. That is why you see Jack ‘o lanterns today.

These days Halloween is not usually considered a religious holiday. It is primarily a fun day for children. Children dress up in costumes like people did a thousand years ago. But instead of worrying about evil spirits, they go from house to house. They knock on doors and say “trick or treat.” The owner of each house gives candy or something special to each trick or treater.

Happy Halloween!

LINDA’S PROFILE

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AIM, TARGET, GOAL!

Do you still have troubles talking about an aim, a target and a goal?
Specifically, in the Russian language there is the same word for all of these meanings!

Plus, what about object and purpose?

Have a look at these definitions below and perhaps they will help you.

Target – what you are aiming for.
Aim – the state you want to acquire by the end.
Object – the point of doing it.
Goal – synonymous with ‘target’.
Purpose – the reason for doing it.

So, let’s do an example…

My target (or goal) is to speak Russian.
My aim is to be able to hold a conversation with native speakers.
The object of this is to be able to understand the differences between Russian and English better.
So the purpose of this will be that I can teach my Russian students the English language more effectively.

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Contact Rachel today > http://www.italki.com/teacher/1394345

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IDIOMS

Oftentimes when we speak, we use idioms to make a point.  Idioms are used in many different languages for expression. Though it may be difficult to translate them from one language to another, we may still find ones that share the same basic meaning.  Learning idioms is important if you want to have normal, everyday conversations with native speakers on an informal level.  The rules you learn for speech in the classroom do not always apply to the language of the streets, the clubs, the coffee shops, speaking with friends, etc. Understanding idioms and knowing when to use will help you speak better and help you understand the different phrases you hear.  Here are some of the most common idioms used in the English language.
 
A Chip On Your Shoulder: 
Being upset for something that happened in the past. 
 
A Piece of Cake: 
A task that can be accomplished very easily.
 
Back To The Drawing Board: 
When an attempt fails and it’s time to start all over.
 
Bite Off More Than You Can Chew: 
To take on a task that is way to big.
 
Down To The Wire: 
Something that ends at the last minute or last few seconds.
 
Go The Extra Mile: 
Going above and beyond whatever is required for the task at hand.
 
Hit The Nail on the Head: 
Do something exactly right or say something exactly right. 
 
Mumbo Jumbo: 
Nonsense or meaningless speech

Out Of The Blue: 
Something that suddenly and unexpectedly occurs.
 
Rain check: 
An offer or deal that is declined right now but willing to accept later.
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Education meets overseas travel with the spirit of Eurovision

The above description represents how many young learners felt about the European Unions Erasmus program, and up until quite recently there was still a hint of youthful idealism about the scheme, albeit mixed with some essential life skills for the next generation.
More recently however, the newly branded Erasmus+ appears to have a more clearly defined strategic purpose. With youth unemployment throughout Europe at record levels, around 6 million young people out of work, it is one of the European Unions toughest challenges. It is probably no wonder then, that the budget for Erasmus+ has been increased by 40% in order to help fight youth unemployment. The main problem, according to some sources, is the fact that skills held by the young and unemployed do not match the jobs available. According to European Union sources, there are currently 2 million job vacancies within the EU where employers cannot find people with the right skills.
In countries where youth unemployment is low, such as Germany and Austria, there are vocational training places available for every young person who wants one. The new Erasmus+ scheme also includes apprenticeship exchanges.
Less is more
In my view there are far too many soft courses for students nowadays. Many University campuses have grow huge on the back of providing these soft degree courses such as media studies or humanities, while failing to equip graduates with the skills they require to become productive in the workplace. This is probably one reason why there are so many immigrants moving to the UK to do work that nobody else will do.
What we are failing to do is prepare the next generation for the harsh realities of life. There are only so many jobs available in the media at any one time, so why not limit the number of students studying such degrees and increase the places available for courses that teach transferable skills? We are also failing to equip students of all ages with skills in languages, an extremely transferable skill that could be useful in any sector.

Languages are the lifeblood of Europe, and as Language teachers we should be encouraging all students to learn at least one foreign language, and of course, English is the best!
You can find information about the Erasmus+ programme here:http://ec.europa.eu/programmes/erasmus-plus/index_en.htm
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