Results 1 to 7 of 7
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Hindi
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Jan 2012
    • Posts: 22
    #1

    Fluency in English

    How to be fluent in spoken English?
    How can i improve my writing skills?
    Having several ideas in my mind,but unable to express myself.
    How to overcome that fear,nervousness that arises when i speak English?

    So many questions..
    And i would to like to sum up everything in one question:
    How do i become WOW in my spoken and written English?

  1. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 24,091
    #2

    Re: Fluency in English

    Quote Originally Posted by snowwhiteY2K View Post
    How to be fluent in spoken English? This is not a sentence.
    How can I improve my writing skills? This is a sentence.
    Having several ideas in my mind,but unable to express myself. Not a sentence.
    How to overcome that fear,nervousness that arises when i speak English? Not a sentence.

    So many questions.. Not a sentence.
    And i would to like to sum up everything in one question:
    How do I become WOW in my spoken and written English?
    About written English, you could start by writing in correct sentences (sentences which contain a finite verb), capitalising 'I', using proper punctuation (".." means nothing).
    That's the easy part, but I definitely think it's worth establishing a solid base if excellence is your goal.

    About speaking, it's difficult to say, given that we don't have a record of your spoken English.

  2. shannico's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Italian
      • Home Country:
      • Italy
      • Current Location:
      • Italy

    • Join Date: Nov 2011
    • Posts: 366
    #3

    Re: Fluency in English

    Quote Originally Posted by snowwhiteY2K View Post
    How to be fluent in spoken English?
    How can i improve my writing skills?
    Having several ideas in my mind,but unable to express myself.
    How to overcome that fear,nervousness that arises when i speak English?

    So many questions..
    And i would to like to sum up everything in one question:
    How do i become WOW in my spoken and written English?
    - ENGLISH TEACHER - NON NATIVE SPEAKER -
    Hi there,
    as for your writing skills I have only one suggestion really: read, read, read and...read.
    The more you read, the easier you'll get the flow and rhythm of the language (and its grammar, I might add). And of course by reading you'll broaden your vocabulary. The most difficult thing about reading is probably trying to figure out key words so as to use a dictionary only when it's strictly necessary. Try and read for pleasure. Enjoy what you are reading and how it reads.
    With regard to speaking. The only tip I can give is don't be self-conscious. I know it's very difficult, but you shouldn't really feel embarrassed about it. You are learning a foreign language: a task unknown to many native English speakers.
    If you don't feel confident, do take your time. A famous linguist called Stephen Krashen came up with a silent period theory. He maintained that babies spend months listening before they start speaking. The same may apply to learners of a foreign language. Listen carefully to people when they speak. Take an interest in what they say and also how they say it. Don't look for a translation of every new word you come across, buy maybe try and guess its meaning from its context. It is almost as though you have to leave your own language behind and embrace a new one for what it is! When things get tough and you haven't got the faintest idea of what someone is talking about, don't nod and smile. Stop them and politely ask them to speak more slowly, repeat or explain the meaning of a new word. They'll explain it in English, which will give you another chance to learn more new things.
    I'd better stop now or you'll never read this. Don't give up.
    Good luck
    Shan
    Last edited by shannico; 21-Jan-2012 at 22:39. Reason: typo

  3. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 24,091
    #4

    Re: Fluency in English

    Quote Originally Posted by shannico View Post
    If you don't feel confident, do take your time. A famous linguist called Stephen Krashen came up with a silent period theory. He maintained that babies spend months listening before they start speaking.
    And the notorious linguist Stephen Krashen had, and still has, many famous critics who are linguists and who say his method is complete bollocks, and that it was partly the cause of the poor knowledge of grammar that English teachers have today. And babies don't remain quiet because they are embarassed and lack confidence; they have to wait until their nervous systems have developed to the extent that speaking is possible. I think we can assume that snowwhiteY2K is well-enough developed for speech.

    But I do agree with most of your advice - the non-Krashen part.

  4. shannico's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Italian
      • Home Country:
      • Italy
      • Current Location:
      • Italy

    • Join Date: Nov 2011
    • Posts: 366
    #5

    Re: Fluency in English

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    And the notorious linguist Stephen Krashen had, and still has, many famous critics who are linguists and who say his method is complete bollocks, and that it was partly the cause of the poor knowledge of grammar that English teachers have today. And babies don't remain quiet because they are embarassed and lack confidence; they have to wait until their nervous systems have developed to the extent that speaking is possible. I think we can assume that snowwhiteY2K is well-enough developed for speech.

    But I do agree with most of your advice - the non-Krashen part.
    In reply to Raymott's post:

    I really don't mean to highjack this post.
    First of all I would like to thank Raymott for sharing some of my advice. However I feel an explanation is required as to my reference to Stephen Krashen.

    By mentioning Krashen I wanted to say that acquiring a foreign language should be made as natural a task as possible and pressure on a learner to produce a language is totally unnecessary and unbeneficial. As well by citing the silent period I meant to refer to Krashen's insight that 'Perhaps the "silent period" observed in natural child second language acquisition (Hakuta, 1974; Huang and Hatch, 1978) corresponds to the period in which the first language is heavily used in"unnatural" adult second language performance. The children may be building up acquired competence via input, and several recent studies (Gary, 1974; Postovsky, 1977) imply that less insistence on early oral performance may be profitable for children and adults studying second languages in formal settings' (Krashen ,1987).

    That happened in my own case as well, when, after studying English grammar for years at school, I had to move to an English speaking country and was exposed to a totally different variety and reality of English. I did take my time, I listened and I thought about what people were saying and how they were saying it. All along, however, I avoided putting myself under pressure to produce language. Only after a few months I felt confident enough to speak and I must say the results were not bad!

    From my own experience, as both a learner and a teacher, I do believe that a natural approach is definitely more effective than any skill-based approach. Like me, many teachers feel the same way regardless of how good their grammar knowledge is.

    I must admit that your response did surprise me. For someone who is involved in an academic environment I found your way of dismissing Krashen's studies somewhat inelegant and ineloquent. Furthermore, I shouldn't really be the one to remind you that we are discussing language issues on a forum dedicated to improving learners' English, not only in so far as grammar but also where their way of expressing themselves in English is concerned. Hence, your resort to rough language seemed inappropriate.

    May I just conclude this post (also my last post on this thread) with Krashen's words.

    'We must, however, realize that it is our professional responsibility to teach according to our convictions about how people acquire language [...].
    At a minimum, students should be informed that the skill-building hypothesis is in fact a hypothesis, not an axiom, and that other hypotheses exist' (Krashen, 2004).

    * All cited sources have been taken from Books and Articles by Stephen D Krashen

    Krashen S.D., Second Language Acquisition and Second Language Learning, 1987, p 68-69)*
    Krashen S.D. 'Why support a delayed-gratification approach to language education', in The Language Teacher 3-7, 2004, p.4).*

  5. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 24,091
    #6

    Re: Fluency in English

    Quote Originally Posted by shannico View Post
    First of all I would like to thank Raymott for sharing some of my advice.
    You're welcome. I agreed with most of what you said.
    However I feel an explanation is required as to my reference to Stephen Krashen.
    You have no need to explain or justify your reference to Krashen, any more than I have a need to academically outline my distaste and distrust of his methods. (I'm sure I've given more scholarly rebuttals here of Krashen, though they could be a few years old). I concede that it would have been more polite of me simply to have ignored the reference, rather than give a facetious response. But where's the fun in that?
    Anyhow, I don't think that it hurts snowwhiteY2K's chances of becoming a good writer and speaker of English to know that I disagree with Krashen's ideas, primarily because I think that anyone who can post in English as good as snowwhiteY2K's has very probably served their silent period already. I imagine that she could benefit from both natural immersion as well as academic type study. And she's probably already surrounded by speakers of i+1 English. But neither of us knows what her environment is like.
    She is seeking excellence ("How do i become WOW"). I know that Krashen claimed his method could produce competence, but was he promising excellence? For example, I know for a fact that students can be exposed to correct punctuation for years without ever becoming capable of writing two consecutive sentences correctly.
    Last edited by Raymott; 22-Jan-2012 at 17:00.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Hindi
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Jan 2012
    • Posts: 22
    #7

    Re: Fluency in English

    @ everyone- Thank you so much for your valuable guidance.

Similar Threads

  1. English Fluency
    By engr.yasir ali bhatti in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 26-Jul-2011, 09:19
  2. about fluency in english
    By SAMHUNS in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-Apr-2008, 21:03
  3. English fluency
    By dimar in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-Mar-2006, 11:20
  4. Fluency in english
    By promoth in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 23-May-2005, 18:46
  5. fluency in english
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 18-Aug-2004, 22:50

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •