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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: How to Take YOUR English to the Next Level ⬆️

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Well hey there I'm Emma from mmmEnglish!

Today we're going to talk about

leveling up your English.

Taking your English to the next level,

from intermediate to upper-intermediate,

from upper-intermediate to advanced

and beyond.

We can all agree that becoming fluent in a language

has its highs

and its lows.

Some are you further along in your language journey

than others.

Some of you spend more hours practising every week

and some of you work harder than others

to improve your English. Am I right?

But I've got a question for you.

Do you feel like you've reached a point in your English

where you've plateaued?

You've made lots and lots of progress

in the past

and now it feels a bit flat.

Your progress has really slowed down.

You've lost energy and momentum.

You're not improving as quickly as you want to.

But perhaps this is how you're feeling right now.

The feeling of being stuck with your progress

is really, really common. Most language learners,

regardless of the language,

they can relate to this feeling.

But what we need to do together is

push through

from intermediate level

to upper-intermediate, to advanced, fluent English.

But how are we going to do this?

Well I've got a few useful tips to help you push through

and keep climbing that mountain.

But before we get started, if you have a friend

who's been feeling miserable

about their English progress.

And you think they would love to level up with you,

then please share this video with them too.

It's always good to have a friend with you

to keep you accountable and to practise together.

Tip number one.

Expand your vocabulary.

Expand it, make it bigger.

Wider. Broader.

This may seem like a really obvious tip

but it can be really, really easy to get stuck

using the same words over and over and over again.

It's what's comfortable and it's what's easy.

And hey, if you can

communicate your message in English,

do you really need to learn more?

Well if you're happy with your current level of English

then maybe not!

Maybe what you've got is perfectly okay.

But if you want to take your English to the next level,

then you do need to improve your vocabulary range,

which can seem like a bit of an overwhelming task.

Where do you start?

Actually using the new words that you learn

is the key to acquiring new vocabulary.

So make the new words relevant.

Make sure you use them.

Look for interesting, new practice materials.

New shows on Netflix or

TedTalks or different podcasts.

Our world is so full of information and opinions

and ideas, and most of them can be found at any time.

In your pocket!

Look for new, interesting content

always.

Don't get stuck watching the same shows, listening

to the same things, over and over again.

If you love talking about food,

don't just watching cooking shows.

But search for podcasts where people are discussing

topics and issues about food.

Or even better, join online groups or communities

that discuss ideas and trends about these topics.

Daily.

Even if you're not ready to participate

in these discussions in these groups,

you can see what other people are talking about,

what they're chatting about.

This is an endless supply of new ideas

and words and topics. And they're real, they're current,

relevant conversations

that will help you to keep motivated and interested

in learning and practising your English.

You won't even notice that you're studying!

So tell me

what topics are you most interested in?

What conversations do you love to have in English?

Can you add them in a comment below this video?

Who knows? I might even be able to

recommend an online group to join about this topic or

perhaps someone else who's watching

might even be able to recommend one for you.

Now I shared some tips on learning

new vocabulary in this lesson right here.

You might want to check that out next.

But before we move on,

when it comes to vocabulary,

as you're watching a Youtube video,

take notes of the new words that you hear,

turn on the subtitles and rewind the video a little

so that you can really understand

how the words are used.

By the way,

I write all of my own subtitles on mmmEnglish lessons,

so you can see exactly what I'm saying

if you ever need to check the subtitles.

And you can turn them on just down there.

Okay, next tip.

Get used to different English accents.

Now, hands up if you've ever experienced

this situation.

You just start feeling

confident with your English-speaking skills,

and you're feeling pretty chuffed with yourself, right?

And then suddenly, you find yourself in a conversation

with someone that has an English accent

that you're not used to.

Or someone who speaks really fast.

There is nothing that leaves you feeling more deflated

and miserable, right?

In the U.S, Australia, England,

people speak English with different accents.

There's Scottish and Irish accents,

and South African, Canadian, New Zealand.

But then, there's everyone else

who's learned English as a second language

which is by far the majority of English learners.

English is spoken by about

twenty percent of the world's population

which is about one point five billion people.

But only about twenty-five percent of those

one point five billion are native English speakers.

And since English is the most studied language

in the world,

there will be many, many, many more

non-native English speakers in the future.

So you really need to get comfortable

listening to English in different accents.

Search for videos and lessons from teachers with

different accents.

Watch movies from different

English-speaking parts of the world.

Don't just watch American movies.

And speak with people who have

different English accents.

Find a speaking partner from Iran or from Brazil

and practise speaking with them.

Oh right! The next tip is: use English filler words.

Learn them and train yourself to use them.

Filler words are meaningless words

that can be used when you're

pausing or you're hesitating while speaking.

It helps other people in a conversation

to know that you haven't finished yet.

But you're just thinking about

what you're going to say next.

So you'll likely have these filler words in your

own language as well but they're probably

different in English.

Okay.. um.. well..

ah..

right...

uh.. basically..

you see...

I guess...

like...

I mean...

you know..

Pausing or hesitating in conversation is normal!

Especially when you need an extra moment

to think about what you're going to say next.

And since we use filler words without actually

really thinking about them,

your instinct or your habit will be to use

filler words from your native language.

But instead, I want you to think about these

English filler words

and next time you can't think of a word,

try to use them instead.

Try to get into the habit of using words and sounds

that are natural in English.

Now it's important not to overuse these filler words.

For, um...

example... I actually... like,

literally, um...

sound..

totally, uh..

you know... awful!

Try not to do that!

I sounded really unsure and confused and

not very confident there when I was speaking.

But when used correctly,

filler words can actually

help to join your thoughts together.

And make your speech flow a little more naturally.

I mean, if you think about it,

filler words can be, well,

well they can be really helpful sometimes!

Phrasal verbs.

Now English speakers use tons of phrasal verbs,

you'll hear them everywhere!

Especially in spoken English.

Phrasal verbs are really, really common.

They're a nightmare to try and learn, aren't they?

Phrasal verbs are a verb followed by a preposition.

Or an adverb.

And together, that creates a new meaning.

Often a completely different meaning

to the original meaning of the verb.

Now I've got a whole playlist up here about

phrasal verbs with tips to help you study them

and use them, so definitely check it out at some point.

But let's look at a few examples, right here.

Please come in.

Please come up with the answer to this question.

Please come forward

with any information that you hear about the crime.

See what I mean? These three sentences have

totally different meanings.

'come in' means something different from 'come up'

and something different from 'come forward'

and all of those meanings are different

from the original meaning of the verb 'come'

Now we know that phrasal verbs are tricky to learn

and it's so, so important that you're learning them

in context.

So what's my recommendation?

Set a goal to learn and to use one new phrasal verb,

every day. Just one.

Train your tongue.

You can have perfect listening skills

and perfect grammar,

but if you can't communicate your message

clearly with your mouth and your tongue, well,

it's really difficult to feel

positive about your speaking skills.

Good pronunciation is definitely one very, very

important part of pushing your English to the next level.

Now think about it this way, if you want to improve

your arm strength or your leg strength,

what do you do? You exercise!

You hit the gym. You workout.

We train our muscles to be stronger.

Now the tongue is also a muscle

and it can also be trained.

There are some English sounds that just don't exist

in your native language. It's a fact.

So of course, it's normal if your tongue

just can't make those sounds at first.

But it doesn't mean

that you can never make those sounds.

With a little bit of training and a little bit of hard work,

your tongue and your mouth

will be able to make those sounds.

Now firstly, you really need to know which sounds

are difficult for you.

Which are the sounds that you really need to practise?

Maybe the 'th' sound.

Maybe the 'ch' sound is really hard for you.

And perhaps you say 'shicken' instead of 'chicken'.

So find video lessons that

focus on the sound that you need help with and study it.

Then choose a word that has that sound

- a tricky one, right?

And say it over and over and over again.

Squirrel.

Say it until you can't say it anymore

until your tongue is really tired.

And it will feel tired, just like your stomach's

going to feel tired after you do a hundred sit-ups.

But better still, what if you practised pronunciation

while you were exercising?

Sixth.

As you train your tongue muscles,

those tricky words and sounds will become easier

and easier to make.

It just takes a little practice, consistent practice.

So, they're my tips to help you level up in English.

And I want to know

if you've got any others that you want to add.

Please share them in the comments below.

If you're an advance level English learner,

how do you push through the difficult times?

Times when you almost gave up.

How did you take your English to the next level?

Can you share any advice

with the other English learners

who are here watching today?

Here are the links to some of the lessons

that I talked about during this video.

So I'll see you in the next lesson!

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