Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Today I'm going to teach you how to speak English better with ten super practical tips. This is one you don't want to miss guys. So let's get going. Hey guys and welcome to Eat Sleep Dream English. If you haven't met me before my name is Tom and I teach fresh modern British English so that you can take your English to the next level and achieve your life goals, whatever they may be. Now today we're looking at ten super useful tips that are going to help you to improve your spoken English. Now these tips are practical guys. These are things that you can do today to improve your English. I'm not going to give you like 'oh practise more' 'be more confident' none of that stuff! This is practical stuff. Stuff that you can really do to make a difference. Alright so let's get going with number one. Ok, the first tip is to start learning collocations. When we start learning English or start learning a new language we learn individual words. You learn the word rain and you know what rain is but we rarely ever just say the word rain in a sentence it will often go with other words. We call these collocations. A collocation is when words go together frequently. They are seen together frequently, it's like a pattern. So for example with rain, you learn the word rain but then learn the collocations. So for example what adjectives go with rain? Well, I can think of a few. Heavy rain, that means a lot of rain. Another word for that is torrential rain. Ok, so they both mean a lot of rain. What's the opposite, light rain. So a little bit of rain. So as you can see you are getting collocations, you are building up little chunks of language that are going to help you when it comes to speaking English. Because you are going to know these units to put into your sentences. So instead of learning one word try and build up units of language that we call collocations. Number two, think about when and where you are going to use your English and then study the language that you need for that situation. So for example I did a video about going to a hotel and using English to help you in a hotel. Now if you are ever going to travel with English that is a great place to start because you are going to stay in a hotel. So learning phrases like 'what time is check out?' is going to be super useful for you in that situation. That's the sentence that I would use in that situation. So if you learn that phrases, you are using the same phrases that a native English speaker would use. So think about the context in which you are going to use your English and learn the specific vocabulary or phrases for that situation. Now related to that is, in that situation try and predict what you might be asked or what phrases you might need to use. So let's stay with the hotel context now I didd a video all about useful hotel English which I'll link right above. In that video I looked at five phrases that a receptionist might ask you or five questions that a receptionist might ask you. Now what you can do is anticipate those questions and be prepared with your own phrases. So for example they might ask you 'Can I help you with anything?' Now if they ask you this question, you will need a phrase to make a request. So 'I was wondering if you could...' and then the thing so 'I was wondering if you could tell me the nearest ATM'? or 'Please could you tell me the nearest ATM?' So anticipating what they are going to ask you and what phrases you are going to need in that situation and then preparing for it. Number four is super practical. Use vague language to help you in situations when you don't know the English word. So if you are trying to explain to someone a word you could throw in stuff or thing or something. So for example 'What's that thing you use to travel around London?' Oh it's an Oyster card, yes that's the one. So you didn't know the word Oyster card, you use the word thing to replace it. So you know the word thing. Thing could be anything, it could be an oyster card, a book, a light whatever. It doesn't matter. If you don't know the noun you can use the word thing or stuff. OR if you are trying to describe it, it's a kind of card you use to travel around London, what is it? Oh it's an Oyster card, ok. so it's a kind of or a sort of. So using these vague bits of language can help you when you don't know actual words. Perfect for that situation when you just can't remember the word or you don't know the word. So related to that tip is to use your own language in a situation where you don't know a word and you are trying to describe it to someone. So for example you might say 'In my language we say una manzana, it's a kind of fruit. it's green, it's kind of red.' They might know the word in your language so if you are really struggling say the thing in your language, possibly the person might know what you are talking about. Now for those of you that have been watching Eat Sleep Dream English for a long time, you'll know how much I love semi-fixed expressions. Semi-fixed expressions are expressions that are semi-fixed. That means that part of it is fixed and cannot be changed and part of it can be changed and is very flexible and you can put different ideas in there depending on the situation. So one of my favourite phrases to reject an invitation politely 'I'd love to but...' and then the thing, maybe I'm busy or I have plans. That is a perfect semi-fixed expression. You've got the wonderful phrase there I'd love to but and then you can change the ending depending on the situation. So already you have half the sentence fixed in your brain. You know I'd love to but because it's the same every time. I'd love to but I'm busy. I'd love to but I've got plans. I'd love to but I'm washing my hair. Whatever the thing is. You just change that second part of the sentence and you've got a beautiful English sentence. So learning semi-fixed expressions can really help you to get more fluent and to create sentences more easily. One way to really focus on your pronunciation and therefore your speaking is to notice natural speech patterns and in particular intonation. So when you are watching a British TV show or you are listening to an interview or you are watching the news or whatever it might be listen in for exactly how they say the sentence and maybe try and repeat it yourself. Try and replicate it. It's called the mirroring technique, when you listen to someone and you try and do exactly the same thing. You try to repeat exactly what they say and more importantly how they say it. So for example 'I'm absolutely knackered'. Ok, try and repeat that. Alright try again 'I'm absolutely knackered.' So are you noticing that stress on the absolutely. I'm absolutely knackered. That means I'm really tired, basically. So if you are mirroring someone's speech, if you are listening closely to how they say it and then repeating it and trying to get it exactly the same that will really improve your intonation and sounding more natural in your own speech. So maybe pick a TV series that you like. Really notice how they say phrases and sentences and then try and repeat them. Staying with pronunciation, it's really important for you to get your mouth used to making sounds in English. Now I know a lot of sounds are different from your language so your mouth and the muscles in your mouth aren't used to making those shapes and therefore those sounds. So practise is super important. Take the word 'comfortable'. Ok, there are a few sounds going on there. Comfortable. Now you've got to watch what your mouth is doing 'comfortable'. Get your mouth use to making that shape, ok? Now that's really important, you've got to practise, you've got to, it's like going to the gym and training your body. You are not going to get the body you want just by lifting one weight once. You've got to do it over and over again and you've got to repeat it over and over again. It's just the same with the mouth. Get these muscles use to making the shapes that you want to make the sounds that you want. So practice is so key and being aware of what your mouth is doing and maybe looking in the mirror as you are making these sounds or saying these words and seeing what's going on in your mouth, ok? Super important. Practice and repetition are so important. Ok, and the last two kind of go together. First of all I want you to take a sentence and break it up into speech units. Now a speech unit is a couple of words or a phrase that we would say in one and then we would pause and then maybe say the next part and then pause and say the next part. And that helps you to say the sentence clearly and fluently. So let's take this sentence 'I'd love to live abroad but I don't want to leave my family' Ok, so break that down into speech units that you can say together so 'I'd love to live abroad but I don't want to leave my family'. So you can see there we are breaking it up. I'd love to live abroad but I don't want to leave my family.' So you break the sentence up into how we would say it, chop it up and then practise and then build it up in terms of speed so start slowly 'I'd love to live abroad but I don't want to leave my family.' Ok, so speech units super important. Taking a sentence and breaking it up into how we would say it not just how it's written. Ok and that flows into the last one number ten, which is use a voice recorder to record your voice saying these sentences and listening back and comparing how you think you said it to how you actually said it, ok? So recording on your phone, your phone has a voice recorder, use that to record yourself. If you are lucky enough to have someone that can speak English really well maybe it's an English speaking friend or someone that has learned it at a high level then maybe they could listen to it and give you some tips on how to improve it. Maybe one part you need to say slightly differently, but yeah record your voice. Wow, ok that was ten practical tips. What did you think guys? Did you find those useful? Let me know in the comments below, which one did you find most useful and which one are you going to try and use today in your English? Obviously if you have any other tips for improving your spoken English then let me know in the comments below, share your ideas with the rest of the Eat Sleep Dream English community. Guys before you go anywhere remember to get on to Instagram and follow my Instagram account and my Instagram stories and of course I'm on Facebook as well. You know of course by now that I've got new videos every Tuesday and every Friday helping you take your English to the next level. Thank you so much for hanging out with me guys, I hope you found that one useful. I felt like we dug into some really interesting stuff there. So yeah let me know. Hit me with big thumbs up and of course subscribe. Alright guys, thank you so much, this is Tom, the chief dreamer, saying goodbye.