Have you noticed that if you don’t practice for some time, your English skills become somewhat rusty? So how not to lose your English skills?
In other words, you have to do something to maintain your level even (or especially) on holiday not to lose language skills acquired through such hard work. And the longer the holiday, the more important it may be. “How is it possible?” you might ask. “When the only thing you want to do is idle about, learning English doesn’t seem to be a perfect holiday activity”. Well, the answer is simple – don’t take it as a learning process at all. Have fun and hone your listening, reading, speaking and writing skills at the same time. Here are a few practical ideas for you:
Luckily, there are so many useful online resources which you can use whenever you have some free time and wherever you are. One example of such resources is the radio. All you need to enjoy the podcasts you like is Internet connection. If it’s not too hard to do, imagine yourself lying on the beach with headphones in your ears, sunbathing and improving your listening skills simultaneously… It looks idyllic, doesn’t it? Besides podcasts, pay closer attention to the music you listen to. Chances are there are many songs in English which you love but do you always understand the meaning of the songs perfectly well?
If you don’t, read their lyrics and consult with a dictionary when you come across new words. Once again, thanks to electronic dictionaries it is very fast and easy. So listen to what is interesting for you, expand your horizons and have a rest at the same time!
READ ENGLISH FOR YOUR PLEASURE
It goes without saying that you might not be that enthusiastic about reading some challenging books on your holiday. So don’t be too hard on yourself and put Moby-Dick or the Canterbury Tales aside. Instead of those wonderful but reader-unfriendly books, opt for something relaxing and appropriate for your English level. Graded readers would be perfect. Again, base your choice on what is interesting for you and then your reading will be both enjoyable and effective.
SPEAK UP! DON’T BE AFRAID OF SPEAKING IN ENGLISH
Still wondering how not to lose your English skills? As English is the language of international communication, you are likely to meet English-speaking people on your holiday. Of course it depends on your destination but generally it is true. So when you meet some, don’t be embarrassed to speak to them, express your thoughts and make new connections.
Start with short conversations at a supermarket, a box-office or a bar and finish with new friends who might be your hotel room neighbours or holiday-makers taking the same tour to Neuschwanstein Castle, for example.
Watch two videos about such trivial but necessary conversations:
WATCH THINGS IN ENGLISH!
When you are on holiday, don’t forget to devote some free time to watching films or TV series with or without subtitles. Choose the variant which you like best but remember that subtitles will make the task a little less challenging. It may be one of your favourite movies or some new one which is on at the cinema. This activity will be not only be pleasant but very useful too because it combines listening and vocabulary work in an enjoyable way!
DON’T MISS AN OPPORTUNITY TO WRITE IN ENGLISH
A holiday is a good chance to practice your writing skills even if it doesn’t seem so at first glance. While you may send dozens of business emails every working day, a holiday enables you to send a traditional postcard to your nearest and dearest for a change. If they know some English, drop a few lines in this language for them. If you are resting in an English-speaking country, it will be especially appropriate.
Whatever you do on your holiday and whichever method of English practice you choose, remember to do it with pleasure. Don’t take it as hard work because learning is self-love in action and you are on holiday, after all. Combine them and reap the benefits of both! For more information on how not to lose your English skills, whether on vacation or not, sign up for a free trial lesson and ask one of our teachers.