The first important issue that one needs to understand is the importance of being fluent in speaking English. One may ask what is this fuss about English and why is our country so obsessed with it? Why cannot we promote Hindi which is the national language of our country? The British have gone leaving their culture behind. Are we still colonized? Is the slavery continuing in this form? My answer to this is:
- English is not just the language of the British anymore. English is a universal language and one of the prominent languages of our nation as well. It is the only language that connects the entire world in one string. It is the only language that makes international communication possible.
- On colonization and slavery- these are two very broad terms covering many aspects and perspectives so I would refuse to dig deep but no we are not colonized if just English language is taken into consideration.
The ones who are unable to speak fluent English are victims of condescending eyes. It has also been observed that these days English is considered as the parameter of measuring intelligence. This kind of attitude is absolutely unacceptable. If one can speak good English, he is worthy of a job. If one cannot, then he stands nowhere in the competition. The first impression in an interview is created by one’s fluency in the language. Inability gives him the ticket to rejection no matter how worthy he is. The scenario does not limit itself to career lines. It has started infiltrating one’s personal life as well. Interactions in colleges, universities, social media, with friends and acquaintances become fruitful and healthy only if one is confident about one’s communication skills. It is not possible to change this status-quo to be practical, but it is possible to fight it.
Is our education system responsible?
You may wonder why is it that so many English-medium schools across the country have a majority of their children who have somehow learnt to write in English but are unable to speak fluently? Where else will they learn the language if not in schools? The truth is- if your child is unable to communicate well, it is not the school’s fault. Of the many rules and regulations the schools impose, one is to speak in English in the school premises. But it is practically impossible to monitor each student every moment. The students manage to talk in the language with their teachers, but the conversation with them is very limited. Unless they speak in English with their friends, they will never be fluent in the language.
But again, in most cases it is not possible practically. Friends speak with each other in a language they are comfortable with. Moreover, in their age nobody can think about the future consequences. No matter what language it is, reading and writing can only make you learn to read and write. Mastery over a language, be it any, can only be gained if it is spoken on a regular basis.
Some easy tips to enhance your efficiency in speaking English
Talk to others
You must speak in English as much as possible with whomsoever you can, throughout the day.
Talk to yourself
Now it is quite possible that your family members do not know the language themselves and your friends tease you on encountering this sudden resolution of yours. If you have no one with whom you can actually talk, then talk with yourself in English. In fact, you can also think in English. Whenever you are thinking about something- things that you have to do during the day, food that must be prepared, home works to be done, or anything and everything, make sure that every word should come to your mind in English.
It is not possible to carry the hardcopy of a dictionary all the time. But all of us have cell phones. Download a dictionary app there. Now, there are many dictionaries that not only give you the meaning of the words but you can also hear the pronunciation. Merriam Webster dictionary has updated several features. It has features like ‘word of the day’ where they teach you the meaning of a new word everyday and ‘word games’ where you can play and learn simultaneously. Use Google, to translate words and dictionaries to learn their various synonyms.
Watch English films and TV series with English subtitles
This is one of the most effective way to enhance efficiency in English. You may think that you have been hearing English all your school life. Your teachers taught you all the subjects in English except vernaculars- 2nd and 3rd languages. Then what difference does it make? Well, it does make a difference. Hearing lectures on the battles fought, or description of a valley in some story, or the economic and social life of a tribe, or about weather changes, has taught you to write about those things. But when you watch a film, you hear how people do they everyday conversation with each other about the basic things in life, what we call ordinary chatting. Hearing them with English subtitles makes each word clear in case you face difficulty understanding their accent. It also teaches you pronunciation and spellings and improves your vocabulary.
Reading habits should be inculcated from childhood. But if you have not, start now. Books and newspapers are the best means. But if you cannot buy books or do not know which books to buy then read only newspaper. Begin with reading simple news and gradually move to the heavier stuff. It will be immensely helpful.
So, these are some simple habits which can be developed by anyone. Not only a student, but people of any age and profession can learn English by these means. So, if you are a housewife and wish to learn English you don’t have to go for spoken English classes, or appoint a guide at home or buy expensive books. Such follow these steps and make a difference. Moreover, it is never too late to learn.