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How to learn better English, please?

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  • How to learn better English, please?

    What are some good methods and ways for a Japanese student to study and learn written and spoken English, with emphasis on composition, in order to prepare for English Language exams in four months, to be able to enter a top rated Japanese High School?
    Thank you in advance for your help.

  • #2
    Re: How to learn better English, please?

    This is a bit of a strange request to be posted on an IT Forum but in case it is genuine AND because it is in the correct Forum (unlike some others posted), you shall get an answer.

    From the small post you have just made, your grammatical construction and composition seem just fine to me. Even better than the majority of people I know who have English as their first or only language!! I think you have nothing to worry about.

    Spoken English proficiency can only be improved by conversing with a native English speaker though care has to be exercised that the people you converse with don't have excesssive accents that distort word pronounciations. You can come and stay at my place for a couple of months, I will help you with your English (and you can help my daughter with her Japanese). Serious offer, PM me if you are interested!!

    Reading english novels (fiction or non fiction) will assist in learning how the written language is composed but I would stay away from reading Shakespeare and other old English authors. Read modern English; find a topic that interests you (fishing, golf, flying etc) and read books about the subjects that interest. Makes it more interesting to read and you will better remember the grammatical construction that way as well.

    If you have trouble with your Ls and Rs, as many Japanese do, find a couple of words that have these letters and concentrate on learning how to correctly pronounce just those 2, 3 or 4 words. You then have a base reference when you see other words with those letters. For example: danger and parallelogram. We had a Japanese friend stay with us for 3 months and she had problems with the letter R. However I quickly taught her to say DANGER correctly. Whenever she had another word with an R in it, she would say danger until the new word had the same R sound as danger. Parallelogram was used because of the L and R combination. (Not an easy word for many English speakers to get correct )
    Last edited by biggles77; 26th October 2007, 00:19.
    1 1 was a racehorse.
    2 2 was 1 2.
    1 1 1 1 race 1 day,
    2 2 1 1 2

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    • #3
      Re: How to learn better English, please?

      I've noticed the same thing about those who speak an Asian language as their primary language.

      They frequently confuse L and R interchangeably.

      For example Fried Rice, is pronounced as Flied Lice.
      Andrew

      ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points sigpic where appropriate **

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      • #4
        Re: How to learn better English, please?

        Google (or other Internet searching engine) could be useful also .
        If I have to compose a complicated email or letter and I am not sure how to use a word correctly, I just search the Internet for this word and see how it is appearing in a couple of sentences.
        Regards,
        Csaba Papp
        MCSA+messaging, MCSE, CCNA
        ...............................
        Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate
        .................................

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        • #5
          Re: How to learn better English, please?

          Originally posted by biggles77 View Post
          would stay away from reading Shakespeare and other old English authors.
          This is a bit but interestingly enough Shakespeare is technically Modern English. Old English would sound like a foreign language by today's English speakers.

          But I definitely see your point. Shakespeare is an archaic form of Modern English. One should look for contemporary (about 50 yrs ago - present) authors if today's conversational English is the goal.

          Here's some information about the three periods of English (Old, Middle, and Modern)
          http://www.m-w.com/help/faq/history.htm


          PS - Eytymology was one of the only aspects of Language Arts I liked back in school.
          Regards,
          Jeremy

          Network Consultant/Engineer
          Baltimore - Washington area and beyond
          www.gma-cpa.com

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          • #6
            Re: How to learn better English, please?

            Old English = Beowulf, sort of, Gaelic, etc. Try reading that stuff and you turn to mush!

            netxt had an excellent tip there. Just make sure to read multiple sources, as some may be in slang.

            Don't forget, conversation is the best practice!
            ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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