Maintain and Develop Your English This Summer!
July 2020. If you are based in the Northern hemisphere, this can only mean one thing: summer time! Chances are, you are already thinking about your summer holiday. Maybe you have decided to stay put due to the ongoing pandemic. Or maybe you are venturing out to travel and cross a few borders with a couple of regions or even countries. Your kids and their friends might be coming with you. Or perhaps you have decided to spend this holiday all by yourself. No matter what your exact situation is, read on for EXSELLme tips on how to maintain and develop your English this summer!
Whatever happens, don’t let the summer get in the way of your progress. Keep it up please, or else you might find yourself lost for words in that first team meeting in September – or that first English session back at the Uni. I absolutely promise that all the seven items on this list are perfectly doable and will require the least of effort. That’s what I am here for! Coming up with ideas and tips and tricks for you to be able to keep up your progress in English. Enjoy!
1. Set Your GPS to English
When you focus on the driving, your brain will naturally pick up on the English while your GPS gives out instructions and directions. And this works perfectly for all navigation apps. I promised you effortless, you see!
2. Order Your Meal in English
It doesn’t matter whether you are in France, Spain, Italy or the UK. Please bear in mind that the staff in the restaurant business are trained to take orders in all the major languages, including the English. So have a laugh, engage in some role play and order that lunch or dinner in English. And don’t forget to ask for the menu in English, of course! Then you can enjoy questioning the waiter or waitress about the ingredients and the cooking style. You can do it! Here are some of the handy lines to keep in mind:
“Can I have fish and chips, please?”
“What do you recommend?”
“What’s the difference between wheat-free and gluten-free?”
“How do you make your tiramisu?”
“Do you have celebrities eating out here?”
3. Write Your Postcards in English This Year
Of course, this is mostly relevant to those of you going away. However, even if you stay at home this holiday you can still maintain and develop your English. For example, what is there to stop you from sending a beautiful postcard from your native region to your friends and family living around the world?! EXSELLme TIP: Don’t forget to pop that postcard in an envelope. This is because the postal services in different countries will then consider your letter as more of a priority than if you just post your card as is. In addition, here are some words and expressions that are an absolute must for the postcards:
“Wish you were here!”
“Just chilling out on the beach today…”
“You absolutely must visit!”
4. Watch Some Series in English
Also films and documentaries, as well as tutorials on YouTube. But for it to actually be educational, you must make sure you talk about these films and series to someone, in English! Drop the subtitles: and this will be the fastest way for your brain to pick up on new words and expressions and to assimilate the new information that is coming its way. So head to EXSELLme blog for examples of the best series to watch in 2020.
5. Read a Book in English
It doesn’t have to be monumental, or even serious. In fact, some of the best places to start would be books by your favourite authors and short stories. You can always head to Amazon for a great selection of short stories and discussion points from my author page dedicated to learners of English of all levels. Please note that “The English Book Club Series” and “The English Vocabulary Series” are both great for those summer reads and perfect for light beach reading or in-depth studying.
- Make sure you set your country setting on Amazon to your current location. Because you don’t want your book to end up in California instead!
- Pick a short story you are interested in and delve in: topics range from crime and family to the pandemic and love.
- Ebooks and paperbacks are equally good for gentle reading, however, if you really wish to maintain and develop your English and make notes, paperbacks are your best option, by far!
6. Use Your Screen Time Productively
Instead of just scrolling through blogs and forums mindlessly, why don’t you take a minute to post a comment?
- It doesn’t have to be rocket science level? In fact, you can always start with simply stating how you felt after reading that particular article.
- Try to go beyond commenting on Facebook and LinkedIn this summer! For example, you can state your opinion on a blog or a forum dealing with something you are actually interested in.
- Here is an example of an EXSELLme blog post that has been trending online over the past month or so encouraging around 600 comments. This might be a good place to start as you can say what you wish without being afraid that yours will be the only comment that all the visitors to the blog will see.
7. Discover Online Learning
Here is a lesson you can all try out at home. For your information, it is based on a fun Afternoon Tea video I recorded in London a couple of years ago. And it has been trending on my YouTube Channel. The great thing about TED ED is that you can post your comments directly online so that I can personally reply to you with my thoughts and corrections. In addition, feel free to discover the multitude of online learning opportunities such as TED Talks, TED ED, Mind Valley, Future Learn etc.
For additional sources of inspiration and ideas on how to develop your level of English this summer in a way that is also enjoyable and not purely academic, simply dial in – wherever you are in the world! And I will be happy to chat and advise you on the best way for you to perfect your English.
Please note that while we run English classes for professionals in London and in France, you don’t need to sign up for a whole week in London with us to benefit from our personalised advice. In fact, Online Sessions by the hour are now available for booking directly on our website, our Facebook page, and Instagram.
Of course, our regular individual English sessions are still running throughout the year and we are happy to combine face-to-face meetings with virtual online sessions. In view of travel restrictions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, we have also introduced the Weekend Language Stays in Alsace in France. So call to discuss!
If you live and work in France:
If you are employed in France, you can use your CPF (Compte Professionnel de Formation) to finance your week! Click here to have more information about MonCompteFormation. Click here if you can read our article on CPF if you want information on how it works.