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  • Many learners tell me that they love readingbut find reading in English too slow and boring.  

  • But who says reading in English should be  boring? You probably already read more than you  

  • think! Reading is more than just reading  a book: It goes from Facebook posts,  

  • blogs, recipes, labels, commands on your cell  phone, signs on the road, and so on. Reading is  

  • everywhere. We do it all the time. Even reading  the subtitles while watching this video!  

  • So, even if you are not a fan of  books, this lesson is for you!  

  • We will teach you 4 practical tips to start  taking your reading to the next level right now

  • By the end of this lesson, you'll understand  how reading can boost your English. You'll see:

  • By the way, in case you're new here, every  week we make lessons just like this one, so  

  • that you can learn English without getting lostwithout missing the jokes and without subtitles.  

  • Like Rita, who says that even  though she lives in the USA,  

  • she could not find anything that worked  to improve her English effectively,  

  • until she discovered our channel! So we will help  you achieve your English learning goals, too!  

  • Just hit the subscribe button and the bell down  below so you don't miss any of our new lessons.

  • You Don't Read The Same Way All The Time 

  • First things first, what is reading? At a basic level, reading is identifying  

  • and making sense of words and symbolsHowever, there's so much more to that.  

  • Reading is an interactive process of  recognition that leads to interpretation

  • In other words, it's a thinking process that  involves using strategies to process a text  

  • in order to construct knowledge. That a fancy  way of saying that reading actually makes you  

  • smarter. It makes your brain work harder and  better while energizing it. So of course,  

  • improving your reading in English might  even improve your abilities to read and  

  • think critically in your native languageWith that saidit's worth mentioning that  

  • there are many types of reading and you don't  read the same way all the time. 
The most common  

  • strategy that we use (even without knowing  it) is called skimming. If you skim a text,  

  • you read it quickly to comprehend the gist, the  main idea. This is what you do when you pick a  

  • magazine up at your doctor's office and go over  the articles without spending too much time on it,  

  • or when you are scrolling your Facebook feed  to check if any post is worth clicking to  

  • 'read more'. With this type of reading, you learn  through context. You don't stop and look up every…  

  • single... wordYou learn to infer its meaning  by capturing the essence of what you've read

  • Let's try it. You have 40 seconds to read  (skim) this paragraph. Do not pause the video.   

  • Now try to answer this question  without going back to the text.  

  • Interesting, right? I'm sure that there are  words that you may not know yet in this text.  

  • However, if you read it with the  singular focus of getting the main ideas,  

  • the unknown words won't stop youNow, another highly useful strategy  

  • is called scanning. When you scan a text, you  read it to find specific pieces of information.  

  • You are scanning when you read the info on  your plane ticket to confirm your seat number  

  • or to find the characteristics of a product  in a catalog. You shift your attention from  

  • the overall meaning to the structure  (numbers, adjectives, percentages, etc.)

  • Take a look at these situations and decide  which type of reading (Skimming - overall  

  • information or Scanning - specific  information) would be the best one to use.

  • These strategies can be transferred to any type  of text you read, and being aware of them will  

  • help you determine how much effort you should  put into your reading. Not only that but also  

  • understanding your level of English first will  take a lot of the weight off your shoulders.  

  • [show the CEFR reading competencies]. Our next  tips will help you with choosing your next text.

  • By the way, did you notice how  I connected the words here

  • The letter E in TAKE is what we call a silent  letter. It means that you don't pronounce it,  

  • and that's why we connect the word TAKE with A,  sounding like [TEI-kuh]. Also, the letter T in  

  • LOT is between two vowels -> LOT OF. In situations  like these, Americans tend to pronounce it with a  

  • soft /d/ sound - /lɒd əv/. And of is often reduced  to simply [uh], so I say [lodda] not [lot of].

  • If you want to learn more about how  we natives really speak so that you  

  • can understand your favorite tv series, moviesand podcasts, as well as natives in real life,  

  • then I highly recommend that you give  our power learning Mini Course a try!  

  • It is absolutely free and we will show you  what it takes to comprehend natives confidently  

  • in the real world. Sign up now just click  up here or down in the description below!

  • Do you like reading? What about reading in  English? Maybe your answer is NO. You may say you  

  • like it, but you don't have the time. Or maybe you  do like it, but find it tiring reading in another  

  • language. Well, let me help you with thatThere are many options for you to start reading  

  • right now. The first step is to start with  things you ALREADY like or that you've already  

  • read in your first language. This means DO NOT  read children's books because you think that they  

  • are the easiest. Kids books tend to use strange  vocabulary that isn't actually practical to you.  

  • Furthermore, the stories won't really  engage you, so you'll probably give up.  

  • Now, the exception of course is if you have  children and you want to read these books  

  • with them. Then that is a fantastic way  for you to bond and practice together

  • Now maybe you use different social networks. You  may choose to follow certain pages on Facebook  

  • or Instagram that cover topics you likeSince there are so many options out there,  

  • turn reading in English into a habit, even  if it's a tweet, the captions of a post,  

  • a paragraph,  a news article or blog  article, or a whole page of a book.  

  • Remember to set the time and place and make  that commitment to yourself. For example,  

  • every day after having dinner, I'll read two  tweets from CNN's account. Build the habit--read  

  • every day. Start small, and when you least  realize it, this habit will grow on you

  • Again, the key is to read what you already  enjoy reading in your own language.  

  • So don't just start reading the news because  someone told you it's good for learning English  

  • if you don't even enjoy doing  that in your native language.  

  • It's important that you find something that is  just a little bit more challenging than your  

  • current level and that is gripping enough to get  you into the habit. So, here are a couple of tips:

  • * Start simple 
 If you are a fan of books and want  

  • to read more of them in English, look for graded  readers. They are books designed for learners in  

  • which the language was adapted to suit different  levels. Besides that, they have pre-, during- and,  

  • post-reading activities that make reading more  fun and help you better understand the text.  

  • This is also a great way of exposing yourself  to the culture by reading classic English  

  • and American literature like Moby  Dick or The Picture of Dorian Gray.

  • * Play Games in EnglishIf you don't tend to read books,  

  • but you are a fan of videogames, they can  be a fantastic source to help you read more.  

  • Lots of different games have written dialogues  and texts that you NEED to understand to move on  

  • in the game. They help you develop problem-solving  skills, and are often related to survival English.  

  • Don't waste this chance of learning while  you have fun, play them in English!  

  • * Read things you're interested in!
 Social media posts, comics, blog articles,  

  • magazines, recipes, even product labels, you  name it! Read things you're interested in,   

  • they don't need to be books. You can also pick  a particular topic you like and opt for reading  

  • different types of text within that same topicThis is called narrow reading and it will expose  

  • you to the same language range over and overwhich will ultimately help you acquire that  

  • vocabulary.   We've seen at the beginning of the  video that reading is a powerful skill to develop.  

  • So, find among the things you already read in  your first language something that you'll enjoy  

  • reading in English too.  * Re-read
 

  • Following up on the previous tip, find things you  already read in your mother tongue and enjoyed and  

  • re-read them in English. This way, you'll feel  less anxious to understand what's going on and  

  • will be able to focus more on the language. For  me, I absolutely loved the Harry Potter series,  

  • and I re-read the books to improve my German  and Spanish! By the way, in our recent lesson  

  • on The Queen's Gambit we explored how star Anya  Taylor-Joy learned English with Harry Potter.  

  • On the same note, you may choose to read the  book-version of a movie or series you watched.  

  • * Read Self-Development books or articlesThis genre tends to have more simple language  

  • and can be a great way of cultivating the habit of  reading. Not to mention that if you choose a book  

  • on a particular area of your life that you need to  improve, it will help you in other ways as well.  

  • I created this lesson on 6 Life-Changing Books  for English Learners for exactly this reason.

  • Young Adults

  • Now, as I mentioned, I don't believe  reading children's books makes sense for  

  • most English learners, but young adults  books are another story! Browse the   

  • teens book section of a public library in  your city or neighborhood (or on Amazon). 

  • You might not even spend a penny and will have  many choices to pick from. These types of books  

  • tend to use a bit easier language. I think that  series are great because they hook you and keep  

  • you entertained for a long time! Some examples are  Harry Potter, the Hunger Games, Twilight, and the  

  • School for Good and Evil. Although the language  in them may not be automatically transferable to  

  • your daily conversations, it still  helps you expand your vocabulary,  

  • understand the structure of the languageand improve your comprehension in general

  • * Simple English 
 

  • Finally, another tip is to develop the  habit of looking up general information  

  • and definition of words in EnglishYou  can use the Simple English Wikipedia,  

  • the English-learner version of Wikipedia that  has its articles written at a basic level, or use  

  • the  Learner's version of English dictionariessuch as Oxford, Merriam-Webster, and Longman.

  • Improving Your Reading CAN Be Fun 

  • You may be thinking: "Well, reading is not really  my thing because I'm a very active person and I  

  • can't sit still for a long period of timeWhat  if I said you can kill two birds with one stone?  

  • You can take advantage of the benefits  of the enriching vocabulary ofbook  

  • AND practice your listening as well. By choosing  an audiobook to listen to while walking or doing  

  • other chores or to listen while you read  the text, you'll work on the development  

  • of your listening skills while benefiting  from the language of the chosen book

  • And right now you can get two FREE  audiobooks when you sign up for  

  • Audible using the link in the  description. Try Audible for a month  

  • absolutely free, and even if you choose not  to continue, you get to keep the audiobooks!  

  • I recommend The Graveyard Book, a young  adult book with a spectacular narration!  

  • Or you could try one of the other books on my  best fiction books for English learners list.  

  • You can choose to use reading asstepping stone to enhance other skills

  • Read out loud - When you do this, it  helps your brain better store information,  

  • boosting your memory retention. You are  more likely to remember what you've read.  

  • It's great to combine this with  the audiobook so you get accurate  

  • pronunciation. Or look up specific words on  Forvo to hear real natives saying them. 
 

  • Record yourself - While reading out loudit may be a good idea to record yourself.  

  • I understand that listening to your own voice may  not be the most pleasant thingbut when you do  

  • this, you are not only training the muscles  you use for speakingbut also becoming more  

  • aware of how you are pronouncing, linking, and  connecting the spoken and written form of words

  • Highlight words and check them later - most of the  time you skim a text to capture the essence of it.  

  • Be it a book, an article, or a short noteyou first try to understand its main idea.  

  • It will be much harder and slower to do so if you  stop to check every single word you don't know.  

  • So, the pro tip here is to highlight them and  after you've finished your first reading (whether  

  • for you that is a page or a chapter), go back to  the text and check them using a dictionary. 


 

  • Take notes of words or expressions  - following up on the previous tip,  

  • create your own personal bank of new words and  expressions you've learned from the reading,  

  • and challenge yourself to use them. Have them  close to you when taking a lesson, for instance,  

  • or choose two or three to try to incorporate  in your next interaction in English.  

  • Remember the saying 'if you  don't use it, you lose it'.
 

  • I like reading before bed. I highlight the words  on my ereader and then in the morning with a cup  

  • of coffee I look up the new words and add them  to a spaced repetition system, like Memrise. 


  • Join a book clubThis is one of the best  

  • ways to motivate you to read a book, while also  connecting with others and making friends. You