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zhangjin

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Excuse me, teacher. I have learned English for years. We learn English as compulsory education here. Alough I have passed many exams, actually I find myself poor in writing , speaking , and listening.
It's too difficult for me to speak more than 2 or 3 minutes--- I don't know what to say, or write an article more than 500 words--- I don't know what to write, or follow a short conversation in a film.
All that we do day after day is memorizing new words . English is so tiresome that I almost want to give it up.
Could you help me ? thanks a lot.
 

RonBee

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We're here to help. :)

I do think that more important than knowing words is knowing how to use them. There are many Chinese posters on this board. Perhaps they can help also.

Join in a conversation of two or three. I'll try to steer you in the right direction. :)

Welcome to the forum!

:hi:
 

Tdol

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Memorizing new words is a slow and difficult way to learn. It's better to practise suing what you already have to maximise your ability and then learn new words along the way. Reading texts is more useful than lists of words. ;-)
 

Beeuurkes

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Songs are also a very agreeable way to deepen your English, Zhangjin.
Now you can find lyrics very easily on the internet.
Find a song that you like and try to translate it.
By that way you'll learn more than you have hoped.
 

Tdol

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There are loads of good lyric sites now.;-)
 
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zhangjin

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Good idea. Beeuurkes and tdol, thank you. I like listening contry music very much. And is there anyone like Steve Wonder ? I am very fond of his songs.
Could you tell me more about English singers there ?
Now I find books that are not hard for me to read. Perhaps through this way, I can learn more new words too.
I surpose I would never have a chance to talk in English with a forgeiner here. But I still want to know what and how to say when meet a forgeiner who spoken English. Could anyone tell me ? Thanks.
 

Tdol

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I'd say speak exactly to them as youwould anative speaker. Start with 'nice to meet you' then move onto talk about yourselves in generaL. ;-)
 
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zhangjin

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For beginners

thank you.

I have read an article which I thought was very good. If anyone who is a beginner as me, that may be help.


Reading-----the Most Important Way to Learn English


Before you can start speaking and writing in English, you brain must get enough correct English sentences. You can’t speak English if you have never seen an English sentence in your life. This is obvious. And you can’t speak English well if you have not seen a large number of English sentences.

There are tow ways to get correct English sentences: listening and reading. Both are good, but reading usually much easier than listening. With the help of a good dictionary, you will be able to understand English texts much more easily than, for example, English television or movies.

If you read just one book in English, you will see that your English has become much better. You will start using lots of new vocabulary and grammar in your school compositions and e-mail messages. You will be surprised, but English phrases will just come to you when you are writing or speaking! Things like the past simple tense and how to use the word “since” will become part of you. You will use them automatically, without thinking. Correct phrase will just appear in your head.

It will be easy to use English, because your brain will only be repeating the things that it has seen many times. By reading a book in English, you have given your brain thousands of English sentences. They are part of you now. How can you make a mistake and say “I feeled bad”, if you have seen the correct phrase (“I felt bad”) 250 times in the last book you’ve read? This is true for hundreds of word and grammar structures. If you read in English, you can forget about grammar rules. Throw away you grammar book! You don’t need to know the rules for the present perfect tense. You don’t even have to know the name “present perfect”. Instead read a few books in English, and soon you will feel that “I have seen Paul yesterday” is wrong, and “I saw Paul yesterday” is correct. How? Simple. Your brain has seen the second kind of sentence 192 times, and the first kind 0 times. This is what we call grammar intuition. This is how native speakers know what is correct. It’s no magic. You can do it, too. The only difference between you and native speakers is that they have heard and read more English sentences than you have. Many learners have improved their English grammar and vocabulary in an amazing way because of intensive reading.

How to Read

These great results come especially quickly if you do three things when reading.

Pay attention to interesting things: new words, phrases, and grammar structures.

Use your dictionary to learn about these interesting things. The more you use your dictionary, the faster your progress. If you don’t like to stop reading (to look up a word in your dictionary), you can write down all the interesting sentences, or you can underline them in the book with a pencil.

ou can learn the words and grammar in these sentences later.

Add these interesting things to a memo or notebook. This will give you everyday contact with correct English sentences. With such a memo, you will not forget useful words and grammar. Because of this, you can build your knowledge very quickly.

What to Read

You should always read English texts that are at the “right level”. What does it mean? There should be some word that you don’t know, because you want to learn something. However, there shouldn’t be too many difficult words, because you don’t want to use your dictionary 10 times in one sentence.

Here are the kinds of texts that you can read in English.

Literature(文学). If normal books are too difficult for you, we recommend graded readers(分级读物). Theses are usually famous books, written simple language. There are many levels of difficult------from “easy starts” (which use only 200 basic English words) to “advanced” (3000) words.

Science books. If you are interested in science, you can get great science books written in English. There are many famous English-speaking authors in many subjects, such as psychology, biology, physics, or economics.

Textbooks. If you‘re studying at a college and you use textbooks written by English speaking authors, you can get the original English versions. If you are learning a new computer language, you can use a book in English. You will learn your subject and English at the same time.

The Web. On the World Wide Web you are completely free. You can read about every subject in the world ------whatever interests you. Because you will often spend many hours surfing the Web, you can also learn a lot of English.

There are also some small things to do. For example, you can start using English versions of your computer operating system, and other applications. You can also find people who will writ e-mail in English to you. You should simply read in English as much as possible.
 

RonBee

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Re: For beginners

zhangjin said:
You can’t speak English if you have never seen an English sentence in your life.

I'm afraid I can't agree with that statement. Most people learn how to speak the language before they learn how to read or write English. Didn't you learn how to speak your native language before you learned how to read and write in it?

:)
 

lyfen

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;-) hi,
I think, we can speak english without knowing how to rea it, but reading is the best way for improving and understand it. right !
 

betty_pichi

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Re: For beginners

I'm afraid I can't agree with that statement. Most people learn how to speak the language before they learn how to read or write English. Didn't you learn how to speak your native language before you learned how to read and write in it?

:)
Hi, I'm betty, nice to meet you all, I joined this site just yesterday.
I agree with RonBee, because I've been living this situation with my two nephews who were born in USA and still living there.
My first purpose is to improve English language to be able to communicate with my relatives and their friends, but I can see the real difference in the way of learning between me and the children, the boy is four and the girl is only two, who are already able to understand and speak Italian - our mother tongue - English and Spanish too!
 

lyfen

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:) hi, by my mind, children are easier and quicker to acquire languages than adults,right! but if u have the chance to speak and practise it with native people , then u 'll be able to improve and speak it well either .;-) bye .
 

ifrahsiddique

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Dear Teacher,

Please can you tell me the correct meaning of this sentence I was born in a day but, I was never born last night...
please tell me the correct meaning of this sentence, and please tell me how to use this sentence.

waiting for your reply...
 

lyfen

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:) hi, I know a site for practising english in writing with every kind of questions that u like : " blurtit.com " I always go there for pratising my english in writing. there is another way too for practising it, I mean try to correspond with people and listening which is important too even u know this word but if u never hear it speaking by someone then it sounds strange to u and u won't catch it in yr mind, so the more u learn then the more u get, it's evident , right ?;-)
 

lyfen

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;-) hi, about " I was born in a day but I was never born last night " I never hear it before :roll: so I dont quite understand as it 's an expression I think, by my mind it maybe means " I was born naturalluy but was never born in the special time or situation " .just hope someone who know it can explain to us. bye !
 

Fred O'Hanlon

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Dear Zhangjin

Here is some advice.

After a five-minute conversation with a Chinese friend, would you be able to repeat exactly everything you or your friend had said. I doubt it, but you would probably be able to recall what your friend had communicated, shared with you, that is, his or her ideas, opinions, feelings about various things. The words are only the messenger. Forget about the messenger. Focus on the message. When people speak to each other they don't communicate words, they communicate messages. Don't listen to the words. Don't read the words, Listen to what the other person is telling you in speech or writing.

If you try to understand every word you hear or read in English, you will be too busy to follow the meaning. Take care of the meaning and the words will take care of themselves.

How did you learn your own language? Not by memorizing lists of words, I'm sure.

Fred O'Hanlon
 

lyfen

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;-)Hi I agree with learning how to speak before reading and writing a language as some of the native who could only speak but didn't know how to write correctly too, so the main of native people is to listening , then for learning other languages is the same listening and speaking is very important.
 

yeng23

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i agree to the suggestion of Tdol and Beergum??watever?
if u can't write journals and articles so well my teacher said that in writing journals you will always write what is in ur mind! first write it in a scratch paper then see some corrections and wrong grammar then write the correct words in ur original paper! and it is nice when the words in the article is colorful meaning u make the words meaningful and nice to hear that the readers will not feel sleepy! In speaking, u should always watch t.v or read some books or whatever then u will not only read with ur mind but also read with ur mouth to improve ur speaking skills!

hope u learn something!
 

lyfen

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:) Hi there are several ways to improve english they are : speaking, listening, reading and writing we must try to do these four steps then we would achieve.
as we should speak to what we want to express, listen to people who speak and try to understand what they mean, reading the books ,magasines, or news paper,,,,,etc and write messages , letter or make the correspondences with people.
 
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