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10 Tips to Advance Your Second-language Learning Process Speaking a second language is a wonderful tool to have at your disposal. Not only is it fun and cool, but it opens doors to experience another culture in new, exciting and personal ways. And if you're working on speaking a language that others speak in your community, it can also open doors for you professionally. So, if you're itching for some tips to help advance your language learning process, have no fear…I'm here to share with you 10 of my trusty tips for how I learned to speak my second language! (How well do I speak it, you ask? Well, native Spanish speakers often think I’m a native Spanish speaker, just to give you some context.) These are all things that I did myself, so I’m confident in recommending them all to you! :) Let’s get started with some specific tips, and then move on to my more “philosophical” and general advice: 1. Watch television shows, movies and videos in your target language For those working... read more

I was asked once by a Japanese ELL (English Language Learner) how she could improve her speaking.  I told her that if you want to improve then you need to speak!  Talk to everyone.  Don't worry if you screw up or if your pronunciation isn't perfect.  The only way to become better at speaking a language, and to gain confidence, is to practice.   How does an ELL improve their speaking when they are living in a peripherary country?  A country where the language is not spoken as an official language?   That can be a bit more tricky, but immersion is not a guarantee that an ELL will gain proficiency in a language either.  I recommend finding an app or make an online friend that will give you opportunities to practice speaking.   I myself am a language learner.  I would like to go back to Japan and teach, but I would like to improve my speaking skills before I go.  I like using an app called Mango Languages. ... read more

Imagine the audience in their underwear!   This is an old tip from who-knows-where. Has it ever helped reduce your public speaking anxiety? I'm going to take a wild guess and say your answer is "no". If you're happy with this underwear envisioning tip, then carry on. If you feel you need something more to help with your public speaking anxiety, read on!   Public speaking can be downright terrifying for many people. But here's the good part: it doesn't have to be. By using at least one of the tips below, you can make your presentation less nerve wracking and more enjoyable than you ever thought possible. So without further ado, here are a few tips to help with your next presentation:    Look at the tops of their heads Now you might be thinking "aren't you supposed to give people direct eye contact or they might think you're lying?" Well, yes that's true. However, in a presentation setting, you are at the front of the... read more

Summer is a great break for students and teachers alike.  However, students can experience a huge educational deficit by not being able to practice the language they have been studying by not being exposed to it during summer months.  There are some fun ways for them to practice their language skills during this much needed vacation.   Study Blue is a great site full of flashcards that kids can review and even take a quiz with.  There are a multitude of languages and other subjects that teachers and students have made.  Spending 10 minutes here a day can keep their minds refreshed.  As a parent, you can even monitor your child's time spent here and their scores on activities they attempt.   Specifically for French - Tex's French Grammar is a great site put together by the University of Texas that reviews French grammar - from very basic to advanced.  There are listening and written activities that students can complete and receive... read more

Hello, ESL/ESOL friends!   WOULD YOU LIKE TO: ~ practice your English skills? ~ work on pronunciation, pragmatics, vocabulary/idioms? ~ learn more about American culture? ~ play games? ~ go on field-trips (karaoke, movies, restaurants, events, etc.)?   The new year is beginning...and so is the new semester. Who's ready to get their tutoring on???? Along with regular private tutoring session I'm creating weekly Conversation Clubs to help you guys practice your language skills.   I am offering these group sessions at a discounted rate - $25/per person/per session.   Contact me with days/times you would prefer. When I get a few responses I will set up our first session.   C'mon...let's chat!

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