Learning language with a native speaker

While there are many different ways to learn a language, the most effective way is to connect and get chatting with a native speaker. It is not difficult to find good, or even free resources for reading and writing. However, many people lack regular and authentic conversation with native speakers. Both methods have their pros and cons, but keep reading to find out why practicing English with native speakers and learning from them in a classroom setting could be perfect for you or your child.

Practicing English with native speakers will teach the authentic and practical use of vocabulary. You will be exposed to more idioms, dialect, slang and a generally more extensive vocabulary than with a non-native speaker. Regular exposer to natural sentence structure helps the learner see patterns and grammar rules in action. Too much slang is, of course, not a good thing, but exposure to this side of the language is always useful to understand what people really mean.

The key benefit of speaking with and listening to a native English speaker is the impact it will make on your accent! If you struggle with pronouncing certain words, or if you struggle to understand native speakers when they speak, then the best way to combat this issue is to take a deep breath and get talking with someone who knows what they’re talking about! Each interaction will help you gain confidence. Fortunately, so many people are patient and understanding with non-native English speakers, so don’t be scared to just start talking and you might be surprised!

One of the biggest advantages is that practicing English with native speakers will force you to speak English. Aside from being motivated to speak English on the same level as your native English partner, the fact that English will be the only language that person knows means that you can only communicate in English. If you try to learn English with someone from your country who knows English at a higher level than you, then you have the advantage that they will understand which areas you may struggle with because they had to overcome those same problems.

However, it is very common that – when you both have a mutual language aside from English – it will be very difficult to avoid. Very often, it will be very natural and easy for both you and your non-native English teacher to discuss and explain things in your native language, rather than in English. It is rare that a native English speaker will know your language (or even another language) well enough to explain things to you so, although it may be frustrating at times, very soon you will be speaking fluently!

What is your main motivation for learning English? Do you find speaking with native English speakers intimidating or inspiring? Learning a language is never easy and will never be as simple as you would hope, but to be outside of your comfort zone and challenging yourself will reward you for years to come! Your skills, ability to adapt, your confidence and your understanding of other cultures will flourish, so what are you waiting for?

Written by Jane Hasik

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