Trying to speak in a foreign language can be nerve-wracking, especially if you’re not confident in your abilities. For non-English speakers living or working in a country like Singapore – where English is the most spoken language at home, having a good grasp of the language is extremely important.
If you’re looking to improve your English speaking skills, you don’t necessarily need to enrol in a class. There are plenty of ways that you can practise speaking English by yourself, in the comfort of your own home. Here are some of the best tips.
Make a List
Start off by making a list of topics you want to talk about. This could be anything from favourite cuisine to sports. Once you have a few topics in mind, you can start practising talking about them to yourself in private. Repeating key words and phrases out loud will help embed these English words in your memory, ready for conversation. Of course, you’ll also need to know the meaning of those words.
Talk to Yourself
This one may sound strange, but it’s actually a great way to improve your confidence when speaking English. Get comfortable with the sound of your own voice by saying sentences out loud in front of a mirror. On one hand, this will help you with pronunciation, and on the other, you’ll also feel less self-conscious when speaking English in front of others. For working professionals, practise speaking with class and poise while using words from your industry to emulate “business talk”.
Watch English Shows
Learning can be fun, and one way to immerse yourself in the language is to watch TV shows and films that are solely in English. You can do so in private or with your friends and family. Not only will this help improve your listening skills, but you’re also giving yourself a lesson in natural phrasing and sentence constructions. Make sure you keep the subtitles off!
Give Yourself a Pep Talk… in English!
Another great way to practise your English speaking skills is to stand in front of a mirror and give yourself a short speech. It doesn’t have to be anything too formal or fancy – simply introduce yourself, talk about your day, or describe your favourite things. The important thing is that you get used to hearing the sound of your own voice. Not only will this help with your pronunciation, but it will also build up your confidence for when you need to speak English in front of other people.
Write it Down
Many people learning a new language struggle with expanding their vocabulary beyond the basics. A way to combat this is to make a habit of writing down any new words or expressions you come across, then practise using them in conversation. You could even role-play different scenarios with yourself, such as ordering food at a restaurant or asking for directions. Before you know it, you’ll be speaking English like a native!
Learn English with the Experts
Learning English doesn’t have to be difficult or scary – even if it feels like everyone around you is speaking faster and better than you are. Practising in private can be a great way to build up your confidence and hone your speaking skills without feeling under pressure.
If all else fails, you can also enrol yourself in English lessons. At United Language Centre, we offer English courses for beginners like yourself. For example, the Essential English Course teaches all the core components of the language to help students speak effectively and confidently. Our centre in Singapore is also conveniently located at the heart of the city.
Sign up for private English classes or speak to us to find out more.