Summer is here, so it’s the perfect time to relax, kick off your shoes and forget about studying English for a while, right? Wrong! This season is full of opportunities to learn while having fun, relaxing or enjoying the sun. Here are some fresh ideas for you to keep your English up to scratch during those heady summer months and to make sure you don’t get back from holiday all rusty!
Hit the North: Okay, so Great Britain doesn’t have the greatest reputation as a summer holiday destination - I can attest to that with my experience of many summers spent in soggy Scottish campsites. However, the bad weather is perhaps overstated, and in recent years British summers have been getting warmer and warmer (yay global warming!). Taking a trip to the UK is a great way to practise your English with native speakers. The real trick to making the most of it is to not be shy: try to strike up a conversation with a shopkeeper or someone in the street, be friendly with those you meet and maybe you’ll be lucky enough to get an invitation to hang out. Why not take a weekend break to a city such as London or Dublin? Or if nature is more your thing, head to the Highlands of Scotland or England’s Lake District. There are plenty of fantastic destinations to discover. That said, not everyone is able to go abroad in the summer, but that doesn’t mean you can’t practice English on holiday: check out this article on Road Trips for inspiration on how to do so!
Get your summer read: Even if you don’t get the opportunity to visit an English speaking country this summer, there are still plenty of ways you can practise your English! One of the best ways to do so is to read. Reading is an essential part of learning a new language: it is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in English and put into practice everything that you have learned in the classroom. What’s more, summer holidays provide a great opportunity to get into a great book. Whether you are stretched out on the beach or lying by the pool, getting lost in a good novel will keep you entertained and improve your English. So make sure you choose one that interests you, whether it be crime, romance or non-fiction, and that it is the right level for you. Check out this article with our book recommendations for different levels or take a look at this one if you are interested on reading a book about travelling for your level.
Find a friend: Language itself is a social phenomenon, it’s how we communicate with each other, and the social aspect is really important in learning a language. Finding a friend with whom you can practice English is invaluable when it comes to getting better. See if you can track down some native speakers in your city - a good way to do so is by finding language exchanges where many English speakers go to learn the local language, and where you can learn from them too. If this proves difficult, find one of your friends who is also learning English and arrange to do something together where you only speak in English, whether it’s getting a coffee or playing tennis. Having someone to practice with and motivate you makes all the difference!
Make English part of your daily life: You don’t need to be in an English speaking country to have the language as part of your daily life. There are plenty of things you can do to inject a little English into things that are already part of your routine. For example, you could write your shopping list in English, get your news online from an English language website. If you are into podcasts, there are plenty of great options there too. These may seem like small things, but they really make a difference when it comes to developing your skills with the language. Not to forget that What’s Up! will be open during summer, so don’t miss on the opportunity to take some great classes!.
Go see a summer blockbuster: Summertime is traditionally when the film industry releases the biggest, most extravagant and star-studded films it has to offer – so-called ‘blockbusters’. These are big-budget mainstream films, usually with A-list actors and the latest special effects, aimed at a wide audience. They are usually action-packed, fast-paced and made to get people talking – to create a ‘buzz’. Some classic blockbusters include Jaws, Star Wars, Indiana Jones and Top Gun. So go read this month’s article on summer movies and find out what films are going to be hitting the screens this summer and go see them! The one thing you must do, however, is make sure you see them in their original version, a dodgy Spanish dub isn’t going to help you with your English! And you’ve always got the subtitles to help if something is hard to understand. If you’d rather stay home with the A/C on, check out these short TV series!
Something powerful that is exciting.
Start or initiate.
Full of big-name celebrities.
Moving very quickly.
Excitement or anticipation.
Likely to be poor quality.