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  1. #1
    atlaisha is offline Member
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    Could novels help?

    Dear teachers,

    One of my problems in English is that I feel like I say all the sentences different from the way a native speaker would say, like I just translate Persian sentences into English and speak them. Some teachers say to solve this case I have to think English, but the matter is I can make myself think English all the time but I undoubtedly will make mistakes and repeat them while doing so and it could add insult to injury!!(I hope I have used it in the right place)

    I thought maybe reading novels would help me.
    What do you think should I do? Is reading novels a good way at all? Or should I do something else?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    banderas is offline Key Member
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    Re: Could novels help?

    Quote Originally Posted by atlaisha View Post
    Dear teachers,

    One of my problems in English is that I feel like I say all the sentences different from the way a native speaker would say, like I just translate Persian sentences into English and speak them. Some teachers say to solve this case I have to think English, but the matter is I can make myself think English all the time but I undoubtedly will make mistakes and repeat them while doing so and it could add insult to injury!!(I hope I have used it in the right place)

    I thought maybe reading novels would help me.
    What do you think should I do? Is reading novels a good way at all? Or should I do something else?

    Thanks in advance.
    Absolutely! Try do read in English every day and you should be able to see the difference.

  3. #3
    atlaisha is offline Member
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    Re: Could novels help?

    Thank you banderas,I expected to see more opinions.
    Anyway could you introduce some good and useful novels that can help me and are not that complicated? Because some time ago I bought a book that I couldn't understand a single line of it, called Far from the madding crowd.Alchemist was the first unabridged book I read in English,though it was a translation.

    I'm looking forward for your suggestions.

    Thanks.

  4. #4
    banderas's Avatar
    banderas is offline Key Member
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    Re: Could novels help?

    Quote Originally Posted by atlaisha View Post
    Thank you banderas,I expected to see more opinions.
    Anyway could you introduce some good and useful novels that can help me and are not that complicated? Because some time ago I bought a book that I couldn't understand a single line of it, called Far from the madding crowd.Alchemist was the first unabridged book I read in English,though it was a translation.

    I'm looking forward for your suggestions.

    Thanks.
    I believe your English is good so I would carry on with books by Paulo Coelho if you liked "Alchemist". Have a look at this thread, please:
    http://www.usingenglish.com/forum/ge...vels-read.html

  5. #5
    atlaisha is offline Member
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    Re: Could novels help?

    Thanks a lot,I'm going to begin with some of Terry Pratchett.I hope it's a good choice.

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    Re: Could novels help?

    this is my personal opinion, if you're aiming at speaking skills, then reading won't do you much good. reading will greatly increase your vocabularies and improve your choice of words. unless you're reading it out loud, it doesn't really add to the speaking skill.

    do you have partner to speak english with ?

    Beavercanal Land English Community

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    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
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    Re: Could novels help?

    Quote Originally Posted by atlaisha View Post
    Thanks a lot,I'm going to begin with some of Terry Pratchett.I hope it's a good choice.
    Hope you enjoy them - they are pretty colloquial so ask if you have a problem!

  8. #8
    banderas's Avatar
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    Re: Could novels help?

    Quote Originally Posted by beaverbeaver View Post
    this is my personal opinion, if you're aiming at speaking skills, then reading won't do you much good. reading will greatly increase your vocabularies and improve your choice of words. unless you're reading it out loud, it doesn't really add to the speaking skill. It really does!
    Attention to written English will improve your spoken English. You will pick up structures, tones and ideas from your reading. The more you read, the more mistakes and problems will start to "look" or "sound" wrong to you. Correctness will start to feel natural. Reading has to be combined with listening and speaking as often as possible obviously but I do not think that reading is a waste of time.

    do you have partner to speak english with ?

    Beavercanal Land English Community

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    Vibovit is offline Junior Member
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    Re: Could novels help?

    Even though your question is addressed to teachers, I'll speak out of my own learning experience :) in my opinion Nick Hornby's writing is very good for a beginner.

    It's simple and vivid English, with quite a lot of informal, everyday speech.

    It also gives an insight into British culture and mentality to some extent, I think.

    Another book that I felt was of great help to me was Mark Haddon's "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time", a story told from the point of view of a 15 years old boy; an authistic one.

    Very compelling; and with a touch of irony, as I and the protagonist experienced some similar difficulties with communication - such as problems with idioms, the reason being authism in his case, and in mine, being a foreigner ;)

    As a rule of thumb, I tend to choose novels which were written in English, rather than translations into English. There are puns, stylistic devices etc. which you won't find in a book originally written in some other language.
    Last edited by Vibovit; 10-Apr-2008 at 22:58. Reason: adding more

  10. #10
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    Re: Could novels help?

    It really does!
    Attention to written English will improve your spoken English. You will pick up structures, tones and ideas from your reading. The more you read, the more mistakes and problems will start to "look" or "sound" wrong to you. Correctness will start to feel natural. Reading has to be combined with listening and speaking as often as possible obviously but I do not think that reading is a waste of time.
    I apologized if anything i said offended you, i'm a bookworm myself, i developed myself almost entirely through my readings and i never mentioned anything about reading as a waste of time. I just thought a different learning experience could help atlaisha in getting the most from her talent.

    My apology to everyone in this topic esp to Banderas.

    Regards.

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