After teaching more English students than I can count, the most successful students have one thing in common: they practice English a little every day. It doesn’t need to be hours of study- or even study at all- that makes the difference, it can be just 10 minutes a day in some cases.
With this in mind I have decided to write a story about a fictional IELTS student. She is really busy studying and working but manages to practice all four skills every day. Here is her story.
Late for class already. I hate Mondays! At least I get to listen to my favourite podcast while I’m on the bus to school. Podcasts are great because I can listen to whatever, whenever and wherever I like. I have a few different shows about travel and cooking that I like to listen to and because I love anything to do with travelling or food, it doesn’t feel like studying.
To improve my English I listen to their intonation and sentence stress and try to copy it. I get some funny looks from the other passengers sometimes when I forget where I am and practice out loud 🙂
Economics class done! Now for my language exchange with Luca. Luca is an Italian guy in my Business class and he really wants to learn my language and he also speaks great English. We go for coffee twice a week and speak English half the time and my native language the rest of the time.
We just talk about whatever is happening in our lives or something we find interesting in the news. Luca corrects my mistakes every now and then and sometimes he might suggest a better word because I really need to improve my vocabulary.
Time for some lunch I think. I normally have lunch in the park if the weather is good and it also gives me some time to relax by myself. When I have some time alone I like to write in my diary.
I’ve been writing a diary since I was a kid so I thought I should switch to English until I ace my IELTS test. I now use an online diary and it has a built-in grammar and spell check function so I get my writing checked every day.
Uni is over for the day and it’s home time. The buses here have free Wi-Fi! Amazing! I normally just surf the net on the way home. I like to read the news in English and note down any new words that I don’t know in my vocabulary notebook.
My friends have started posting on Facebook and Twitter in English now so even when I’m ‘wasting time’ on social networks I can practice my English.
Time for bed! I normally bring my iPad to bed so I can have a look at some of my favourite blogs. There are literally millions of blogs on every subject in the world, all you have to do is search on Google.
The great thing about blogs is you can interact with the writer and other readers in the comments section. They correct me on my grammar sometimes but I don’t mind, it is like having a free English lesson.