General Question

jefftavernier's avatar

What's the best way to improve my english with free and online tools ?

Asked by jefftavernier (17points) February 26th, 2011

I’m a french history and geography teacher and big user of web, so I have to improve my english to have more connections with other english speakers online…

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11 Answers

mrlaconic's avatar

Live Mocha allows you to take lessons and interact with real people who speak the language you learn.

gailcalled's avatar

We can give you tips if you like.

Tip: Use capital letters for English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Swahili, etc. I am French. I speak French. I enjoy French food.

Tip: big user of the web”

These are minor and subtle. Your command of the language, at least from the small example above, is close to flawless.

podwarp's avatar

I was a linguistics major and would look through those forums every now and then. It’s a great website for any questions you might have while learning or just tying up any loose ends of your knowledge about the language.

Also: – The Elements of Style, although I’m sure my professors would hate that I made the recommendation (haha). I don’t submit to it myself, but it is worth a look.

jerv's avatar

I find that the best way to learn a language (at least once you have the basics down) is experience and interaction with native speakers of that language. Feedback and correction are important if you want to sound fluent. Also, many more academic sources tend to miss idioms, colloquialisms, and slang, so even if you learn the book/site lessons perfectly, you will not sound remotely fluent. English is a tough language since not only do we not follow the proper rules of grammar, we (especially us Americans) violate them intentionally.

That said, it seems you already have a better grasp of English than a lot of Americans these days. If nothing else, you know how to spell!

@podwarp Good call on that first link.

Pandora's avatar

@jerv LOL. So sad and true at the same time.

Thammuz's avatar

From personal experience, once you have the basics down you only need to make it a habit. I’m Italian, I learned the basics in school and by myself, out of love for the language mostly, and then started watching english movies with english subtitles (english for the hard of hearing tend to be closer to the actual dialogue, FYI) then english (mostly american, but some british as well) TV series (which are better for several reasons, namely becaue they’re made of individual episodes and therefore you can watch them anytime you have 20 or 40 minutes free).

All in all once you have the syntax and some knowledge of pop culture and idioms you’re going to be fine. Should you encounter some word you really don’t understand you can always rely on the internet (urbandictionary and wikitionary work well).

Have fun!

jefftavernier's avatar

Thank you for all this answers ! It was my first question on Fluther and I have to say that it’s just a great learning ressource ! Thanks a lot !

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seazen's avatar

A great way to learn a language is with flashcards; nowadays, online flashcards have pronunciation as well as being a fun game. Here

You can even design your own – just sign up for free.

Another way is from the lessons and articles (spoken and read) at VOA

Please state whether you tried and enjoyed them (or not). Good luck.

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