What Lockdown or Quarantine does to your English:
Help? Yes, but only if you do the right thing!
For people who use English as a second language, the lockdown period can badly affect your English proficiency if you don’t take steps to maintain it.
Regression: The effect can be just as bad as happens to international students who struggle to develop their proficiency, get what they need and then return home for the summer holidays and don’t speak, hear, read or write English for several weeks. Invariably, when they return to Australia, they find their English has regressed and they have lost a lot of proficiency.
Develop your English while in Lockdown
What to do: Here is some advice on what you can do to maintain your proficiency and go on developing it. We have broken this down into four separate blogs. Today's blog post is on developing your writing skills.
- Use English as much as possible. The most basic principle in language learning is that language is learned through use. The more you use it, the more it will develop. You must use it, speak it, listen to English speakers, read, and write every day.
- Again, the same basic principle applies: the more you write, the more your writing will improve.
- Write a lot but, as much as possible, get feedback to check the accuracy of what you write.
- Book some tutorials with ISLPR Language Services so as to get expert feedback on your writing (and the other skills for that matter!)
- If you can’t do tutorials, then when you have finished writing something, go back over it to check for errors or for better ways of saying something. Make use of a good dictionary and, if necessary, refer to grammar books but check, check, check.
- Keep a diary of what you do: each day’s activities, whom you speak to, what you think, what you feel, what you eat, etc etc.
- Turn your photographs into an illustrated album of what you have done in Australia. If you do this on your computer you can send it to your friends in your “home” country.
- Write letters to your friends or family or to the newspapers (it doesn’t matter whether they are published or not, just write).
- If in doubt about what or how to write, just write what you would say. For most learners, the difference between speaking and writing is not very relevant. Certainly, the basic sentence structures and the basic grammar are not different.
Are you interested in receiving personalised help with your speaking? Now is the perfect time to try out an ISLPR English tutorial! We've discounted our tutorial prices for the next few months.
Enrolments for our online English course open on Wednesday, 29 April 2020. This is a 14 week online course that aims to develop your speaking, listening, reading and writing skills. For more information, click here.