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English Learning Tips from British Council


Would you like to get a fresh portion of motivation to learn English? Are you looking for any new approaches to developing a better command of this language? Don’t even hesitate to answer a big YES. If you were too lazy or ungifted to learn, you wouldn’t be reading this at the moment.

British Council, the world’s leading educational organization that promotes the knowledge of the UK and the English language, knows what you need. These guys have an impressively large database of online learning resources that can meet the needs of any adventurer who wishes to reveal and comprehend the mysteries of William Shakespeare and Harry Potter’s mother tongue.

What’s your main difficulty?

  • I want to speak more fluently. – They have a great collection of audios of different complexity level.
  • I need to write my essay. – They can provide you with multiple writing prompts.
  • I’d like to know more about Business English courses. – They can offer you very beneficial opportunities.

Check the British Council’s expert recommendations for learning English and find the strategy you need to upgrade your knowledge and skills.

Find and Use Valid Dictionaries

Because most of words have a lot of meanings, and even a native speaker will hardly explain to you the connections between some of them.

Because the tongue features thousands of idioms and set word combinations which should be learned in context. A good dictionary provides it.

Because even the most experienced translators and non-native English tutors use dictionaries for their work. Remember that there can never be too much knowledge.

Provide Yourself with a Paper and Digital Notebook

It’s clear with a paper one. Fill it with new words, useful collocations, and interesting expressions you’d like to remember. Develop a habit to check yourself from time to time by trying to translate the recently learned words from your mother tongue into English and vice versa.

A digital notebook is actually an English learning app. There are dozens of them online, so you can find out more about each of them and choose the one you like.

The common features of all such apps is a database or storage of the “achievements” of your learning process. You can repeat the words or idioms you know and learn new ones all the time, controlling the scores which the app uses to measure your progress.

Have Sticky Notes All Around Your Dwelling

That’s really helpful. And that works not only for kids and teenagers. So, run to the store and purchase some beautiful stickers today!

Experience shows that English learners can remember words and collocations which are used in media and works of literature but not in an everyday human speech. So, if you find yourself thinking that you know what “ambience” is but don’t remember what “a comb” means, you’d better check the latter in a dictionary and put a sticker on this thing as soon as possible.

Set a Non-Time-Consuming Target for Each Day

British Council advises spending 10-20 minutes per day on repeating what you’ve learnt and digging into new things. But such learning sessions should be regular.

Set a small but realistic goal for each day. For example, you could learn 5-10 new words daily and practice using them in sentences. Or you could find 5-7 original idioms and insert them into your made-up dialogues. Be creative and don’t hesitate to experiment. Realize that you do need practicing, and turn it into a pleasant activity.

By the way, various apps can help you with it.

Learn Words in Context and Come up with a Few Examples

Base your choice of dictionaries and learning software on this criterion: new words and set phrases should be introduced in certain context. Based on it, you can make your own examples, therefore practicing what you learn immediately and enriching your vocabulary. 

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