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Step 01 - Understand the Process of Learning English Language
When you start learning English, it is very important to first get an overall understanding of the total system of the language. This helps you realize how the mechanism really works and how it really serves the purpose of communication.
Before studying the Grammar rules one by one, it is better to study the big picture to understand the purpose of learning each and every area specifically.
English Language Learners should basically focus on 6 core areas of study. Out of these 6 areas, 4 are considered under Language Skills where Phonology and Discourse of Language will be covered.
Four Language Skills
Four Language Skills of English
Other 2 are the most popularly addressed areas by all teachers.
Vocabulary - The body of words.
Grammar - Established rules or patterns.
Learners may take Grammar lessons as well as vocabulary practice lessons to improve these two areas.This website provides you a methodical way of learning Grammar and vocabulary by way of a series of lessons supported by exercises.
On the other hand, a learner should basically develop the skill of listening and reading since they are the primary input methods one can use to absorb English Grammar and Vocabulary. Listening and reading of suitable language material can help absorb the two areas much faster.
Listening is specifically important to absorb and acquire the patterns of sounds in English Language (Phonology). Both Listening and Reading are essential to learn and absorb the proper use of language for communication in speech and writing (Discourse of English).
Important Links : -
Listening Material Guide
Reading Material Guide
Further, English Discourse can be learnt and put into practice with Language Practice Sessions created based on real life situations.
In the process of learning, one can then start producing the language by processing the words using the learnt patterns.“Speaking” and “Writing” are the 2 methods of Language Production which is the final output of your learning. With more practice, fluency in “Speech” and “Writing” can be achieved.
Important Links : -
Spoken English Materials
Therefore, it is important for a learner to focus on Grammar, Vocabulary as well as all 4 areas of skills alike since 2 of them are required for language absorptions and the other 2 are for reproduction.
Let’s map the core areas of study of English Language.
The Learning / Teaching Process of English Language
Step 02 - Take Grammar Lessons One by One.
Placing “Learning Vocabulary” and “4 Language Skills” in the background, we first focus on “Grammar” as “Step 02” of your process of learning English.
English grammar is simply a collection of accepted patterns. According to how often these patterns are used, rules are made. Learning these rules or patterns is the study of Grammar.
Before learning the rules, we will analyze the applicability of different areas of grammar in producing the target language.
As we all know, the basic building blocks of a language are different types of words. The basic unit developed through these building blocks is called a “Sentence”. Hence, let’s see how grammar would help us in developing a meaningful sentence for communication.
Different Types of Words
8 Parts of Speech and their function in sentences.
One has to first choose suitable words to build a meaningful sentence. Different words in English have been categorized into basic 8 parts. The learner should understand different functions of each category of words and utilize them appropriately in order to build a meaningful sentence.
When it comes to your choice of words, the stock of words you have in your head (Vocabulary) is of vital importance. Therefore, it should be kept in mind that you also focus on developing your vocabulary parallel to taking your Grammar lessons.
2. Sentence Structure (Word Order)
The order of words through which a meaningful sentence is created can be called “Sentence Structure”. In English, the standard sentence structure is Subject + Verb + Object (SVO Pattern).
In some other languages like in Spanish, the basic structure differs from that of English. The basic structure in Spanish is Object + Verb + Subject.
Identifying the basic structure is very important since the learner should distinguish between the basic sentence patterns of his/her mother tongue with that of English. In most of the cases, the learner gets confused in distinguishing the difference in patterns.
Apart from the Standard Sentence Structure in English, there are other sentence patterns as well in use.
Subject + Verb - The child smiles.
Subject + Verb + Object - He kicks the ball.
Subject + Verb + Adjective - She is rich.
Subject + Verb + Adverb - Kelly runs fast.
Subject + Verb + Noun - Rian is a teacher.
However, you can see that the word order of Subject and Verb does not differ since all of these sentences act as statements.
When the function of your sentence differs from merely making a comment / statement, the pattern may change.
Types of Sentences according to different functions.
To make a comment.
“I am happy.”
To ask a question.
“Are you happy?”
To give an order / command.
To express an emotion.
“How happy you are !
As shown in above examples, you can understand that the word order differs with the type of sentence you develop. Let’s analyze this with the same examples.
“I am happy.”
Subject + Verb + Adjective.
“Are you happy?”
Auxiliary Verb + Subject + Adjective
Verb + Adjective
“How happy you are !.
How + Adjective + Pronoun + verb
3. Time in English Grammar
Any sentence should have a way to indicate the location in time of the action / incident it talks about. The action’s location in time is very important to understand the intended meaning. In English, “verb” is the indicator of location in time. A sentence has its main verb structured in a manner it indicates time. Simply when and how the action takes place. The rule related to this mechanism is known as “Tense”.
In English Language, there are 3 main “Times” and 4 “Aspects”. Time simply refers to “When” that action takes place and “Aspect” refers to how the action relates to time, with reference to its degree of progress or completion.
Three (3) Times
Four (4) Aspects in English Grammar
Continuous or Progressive
12 Tenses in English are created in combination with the 3 times and 4 Aspects as follows.
12 Tenses in English
The learner should study the structure of the verb under each above Tense. Learning Tenses in English means learning the said verb structures.
4. Subject, Verb, Agreement in English Grammar
Subject-Verb Agreement is the knowledge on choosing the correct verb to match the subject in your sentence. When the correct verb is chosen to match with the subject, we say “Subject agrees with the verb”.
This agreement should be made in relation to two aspects.
Number refers to the Singularity and Plurality of the Subject. When the “Number” is concerned, the subject agrees with the verb in the following instances.
When the subject is singular, the Verb is also singular.
She is happy.
When the subject is plural, the Verb is also plural.
They are happy.
Person refers to the speaker, addressee and others (third party) with reference to Pronouns in English.
When we choose the verb “be” in English, we need to look at both the Number and Person of the subject.
Impact of Number and Person in selecting the verb “be” in English Language
5. Purpose of Communication
According to the purpose of communication there can be different variations in the sentences we develop. Following are some of the variations the learner should be thorough with.
Active voice and Passive Voice have their concerns over the voice of a sentence. In Active Voice, the Subject of the sentence represents the doer of the action indicated by the verb. Therefore the voice of the sentence is that of the active doer.
Whereas, in Passive voice, the subject of the sentence does not represent the doer of the action denoted by the verb in the sentence. Instead, the subject represents the receiver of the action denoted by the verb in the sentence.
If we need to give priority to the receiver of the action, we choose to write our sentence in Passive Voice where the voice of the passive receiver is the focus of our sentence. Accordingly, we choose between the two variations based on our purpose of communication.
Reported Speech is another style of sentence writing which intends at reporting to a third party of what someone had said or thought of.
Eg: Rita said that she was unhappy there that day.
Conditional Sentences are used to talk about certain conditions and possible outcomes. The style of the sentence may depend on the Tense of your sentence. There are four types of conditional sentences depending on the time and possibility of occurrence of the expected outcome.
Eg: If you work hard, you will pass the exam.
Phrases and Clauses
Phrases and Clauses are a collection of words. A phrase has no subject or verb whereas a Clause has a subject and a verb. However, both of these units are considered smaller units in comparison to the sentence. Knowledge of different types of phrases and clauses gives a learner a good understanding about construction of advanced sentences.
Phrase - A beautiful girl in a white saree
Clause - I saw the woman who was taken to the hospital.
Clause 01 I saw the woman
Clause 02 who was taken to the hospital.
Complex and Compound Sentences
Complex and Compound sentences are made up of two or more dependent or independent clauses in one sentence. These sentences are burdened with a lot of details and used to communicate much information.
Eg: - My superior was very angry since was late.
Step 03 - Practice English Everyday
All the learnt rules and patterns should be practiced in order to automatize them to be used spontaneously in communication. Fluency also can be achieved as long as you keep practicing. Infact, the learnt rules will easily be forgotten unless you use the language often.
Practicing English every day is not a hard target. You can basically do two things.
Test Yourself with exercises under each grammar section
Take Practical Sessions
Taking practical sessions help you understand how the language is used in real life situations. In Particular, they help you learn the exceptions to the general grammar rules according to the situation / context you are in.
You can follow the following methods to facilitate yourself for the task.
Test Yourself with exercises - Use “Test English” exercises on this website.
Practice dialogues / role plays - Use “Role Plays” on this website.
Watch youtube videos for Spoken Practice
Join a group of Learners to practice conversations