Robby Kukurs

I’m Robby, and I’m a non-native English speaker. Throughout my entire life I’ve always wanted to speak in English fluently, but because of the way English is taught in schools, I always struggled with my spoken English.

I couldn't learn to speak fluent English for 5 years - read about what I was doing to learn to speak fluently HERE - are YOU in the same situation?

Then, one fine day, after years of constant pursuit of English fluency, I realized the key aspect of spoken English improvement – learning English phrases and word combinations instead of studying grammar rules and trying to construct sentences in your head from scratch!

If you’re interested in improving your English fluency too, please check out the English Harmony System which is a product I created to help all my fellow foreigners to better their spoken English and achieve so much more in professional, social and personal life.

English Harmony System

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For those foreign English speakers whose English understanding, writing and grammar is already good but they're struggling with spoken English!

Imprints natural English speech patterns in your mind - revolutionary speech exercising technology!

Builds your English confidence - no more situations when you stop and hesitate when speaking English!

Concluding 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course

This article is part of the 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course. Sign up here to get every lesson in your inbox for free: (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//forms.aweber.com/form/28/1528169428.js"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, "script", "aweber-wjs-gh9mm2tmz")); Hello everybody out there, How are you all doing today? I wanna tell you something. Yes, I really do. I am so happy, or you can say, I am on cloud nine today. I mean it feels like achieving something you have been waiting so long to do and I think I made it. Sorry, “we” made it. First and foremost, I would like to thank all my dear readers who have been a part of this journey right from day 1. Thank you all for your positive responses and active participation in this course we named as “Free 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course”. It wouldn’t have been possible, had it not received such a beautiful positive response from you all, and I think if not all, at least a few would have surely got benefited from this series of articles. By the way, in case you missed the starting, you can always go back to day 1 anytime and start back again. And you know what? I have been in your shoes in the past and I really know what it feels like to work on your English and not get the desired results. Back in 2008, I used to stumble upon many words and could not even speak fluently. It was so hard for me to hold a conversation with anyone. I used to fear a lot that sometimes I had to switch to my native language. Fortunately or unfortunately, everyone goes through their phase of struggle and learn from their mistakes. I know many of you might be seeing yourself in the above scenario, and all I can say is, you just need to keep going and be patient. Good things take a little bit of extra time and some struggles for sure. Just make sure you keep learning and growing your vocabulary, but please, never start learning the words from a dictionary or making a list of phrases from it and writing in your notebook because ultimately you will just be wasting your time if you do so. Whatever you learn, make sure you learn it with context so it remains in your active vocabulary longer and you know exactly how to use it. I really love you all guys and I really wish I could personally help you guys improve and become a fluent English speaker and it is for this reason I did this all for FREE without asking even a single buck from your pocket because I know exactly how badly people wanna improve and grow. But there are certain things that I don’t control and English vocabulary is one of them. Now I say so because it is so diverse. I mean it was not possible for me to cover the entire vocabulary about every aspect of life in these 30 days. A month was way too less time to cover such a diverse topic. It is for this reason, be it me, Robby or any other English blogger, we are also a constant learner. It’s not that we are the complete encyclopedia of English. English learning is a never-ending process. I became a fluent English speaker back in 2012, but that doesn’t mean I stopped learning or acquiring knowledge. It has been more than 6 years since I started learning, practice and improving each day. With the right methods, tips, and consistent effort you can see a major improvement in your spoken English and it begins with you taking the right step. It is, for this reason, Robby developed “English Harmony System” that follows spaced repetition technique to ensure whatever you learn, gets subconsciously absorbed into your mind and you don’t have to force your mind into learning a long list of phrases. So in case you want to take a step further, English Harmony System can be a great tool that will definitely help you improve. So I wish you all the best for your English journey! Have a nice day! Bye-bye. This article is part of the 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course. Sign up here to get every lesson in your inbox for free: (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//forms.aweber.com/form/28/1528169428.js"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, "script", "aweber-wjs-gh9mm2tmz"));

YearOfEnglish.com: Only YOU Can Decide When You’ve Become Fluent!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1C6n5KtSXCc Hello my friends from YearOfEnglish.com! If you’re reading this article, there’s a good chance you’ve been following all those daily tips e-mailed to you by Aaron from Phrasemix.com (he’s the guy behind the Year of English project), and there’s also a good chance you’ve been heeding to all that advice which would have brought you closer to your goal of BECOMING FLUENT IN ENGLISH this year. But here’s a small problem which might actually result in quite a considerable setback for your English fluency. In the very beginning when you just committed to your goal of becoming fluent this year, the deadline for the goal was in a very distant future so you didn’t really have to worry about its completion. You just kept checking your inbox every day for a new e-mail from YearOfEnglish.com in sure knowledge that it was going to bring you another small step closer to English fluency. Now that the year has almost ended however, you may have started wondering: “The year is almost over, but have I become fluent in English? And after all – who’s going to tell me when I’ve become fluent?” Well, one thing is for sure – if you haven’t been doing a whole lot in terms of your English development during the year except for checking YearOfEnglish.com e-mails occasionally and reading the related content every now and then, the chances are – you haven’t become fluent. If, on the other hand, you’ve been engaging in a lot of practicing on a daily basis (including a lot of spoken English practice), it’s pretty hard to imagine as to why you wouldn’t have become fluent. Here are a few sure indicators of English fluency, and if you conform to at least one of them, I’d say you can definitely consider yourself being fluent in English: (more…)

Why It’s VERY Important to Speak Out LOUD When Learning New English Vocabulary Words!

I’m sure you know that it’s quite hard to change bad habits, don’t you? Once something has become your second nature, it’s more difficult to change it than making sure you’re getting it right from the get-go! Learning new English vocabulary is no different. Imagine yourself sitting in a classroom and writing down new English vocabulary words into your copybook. I had to do it at school, and I’m sure such practice is pretty much alive even in this day and age. Now, your first encounter with those new words is purely VISUAL. You’re looking at them, re-writing them into your copybook and with every additional exposure those new words get imprinted into your VISUAL MEMORY. No wonder you often visualize English words and sentences in front of your eyes when speaking which results in hesitant and interrupted speech! What’s even worse, while re-writing them into your notes, you may involuntarily read those new English words in your mind with incorrect pronunciation! As a result, wrong mental association is formed linking a particular English word with the corresponding wrong pronunciation. Furthermore, such visual and wrong pronunciation related associations are quite hard to eradicate considering that they’ve been created upon your first encounter with this or that particular new English word. First impressions are lasting impressions, and if you’ve built your English vocabulary the old-school way by writing and memorizing,… … you may have created thousands of visual and wrong associations in your mind which hamper your ability to speak fluent and natural English! Now, considering that traditional English studies are centered around reading and writing, it’s not hard to imagine that this issue of wrong mental imagery floating around your mind as you’re trying to speak is prevalent among foreign English speakers who are trying to achieve English fluency or improve their pronunciation! (more…)

FGC Goal #1: American Slang Phrase #3 – ZONED OUT

Why is It Difficult to Speak with Certain People in English?

Your English isn’t the same at all times. It changes. At times you may notice you can speak very fluently, with ease. Yet sometimes you may start struggling with speaking in English with someone for no apparent reason! You have to bear in mind that ups and downs are natural in any human related performance, and spoken English is no different. Unless, of course, you’re experiencing frequent occasions when your mind goes blank and you’re unable to speak in English at all – then we can start speaking about the typical English fluency issue which haunts so many foreign English speakers. Anyway, fluctuating English fluency is normal, and there are many factors playing an important role in your English fluency – your stress levels at the time of speaking, your overall mental performance, familiarity with the topic you’re discussing and also frequency of your spoken English practice. The more often you speak English, the better you should be able to perform – it’s actually common sense, isn’t it? Yet one of the most influential factors holding sway over your spoken English performance is PEOPLE you speak with :!: Haven’t you noticed that it’s very easy to communicate in English with certain people while others make you nervous and your start mispronouncing even the simplest words? I bet you can remember situations when you’ve discussed quite complicated matters in English and it didn’t present any difficulties to you at all; yet on other occasions you’ve felt uncomfortable speaking about simple, everyday topics! As I said – much of it depends on who you speak with, so let’s delve deeper into the issue so that I can finish off this article with a few pieces of useful advice on how to manage your English conversations regardless of who is your chat partner! (more…)

10 most common slangs you should start using Today

Tip for YearOfEnglish.com Subscribers: Learn English Song Lyrics!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MVszoY1C6m0 Let’s face it my friends: Songs performed in English are topping the charts all over the globe, and even if you’re a fan of music performed in your native language, you surely listen to popular songs or some classic hits every now and then, don’t you? If you’re anything like the average foreigner out there, I guess I wouldn’t be wrong in saying that you normally don’t pay attention to English song lyrics; you just allow the music wash over your ears and touch you emotionally rather than with the actual meaning of words. To tell you the truth, my friends, I don’t even pay conscious attention to words when I listen to songs performed by my fellow country-men (or women for that matter!), and sometimes it’s next to impossible to decipher those lyrics regardless of the language! :grin: If you do learn lyrics of your most beloved English songs, however, you will most definitely avail of all the following: (more…)

Just a Handful of English Phrases Will Enable You to Speak so Much More Fluently (Article #2)!

Click HERE to read the FIRST article made up of English phrases! Hi guys! Did you know you don’t need to learn MASSIVE amount of specific vocabulary in order to be able to discuss various subjects with ease? You need to focus on acquiring idiomatic expressions and phrases instead, and they will enable you to talk about a wide variety of topics! As far as specific vocab is concerned – well, sure enough, you can’t do without it! But the thing is – you can get by using only a handful of industry terms while letting the idiomatic expressions make up most of your speech. Now, I’m going to pick a random subject – Forex trading – and let’s see what the specific vocab vs idiomatic expression ratio is in the written piece I’m going to create! ;-) (more…)

When You Improve Your Spoken English, You Improve Your Entire Life Along With It!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQFBCNTiP3E You’re working on your spoken English improvement day in, day out. You’re acquiring new English phraseology and vocabulary, you’re engaging in regular spoken English self-practice, you’re seizing every opportunity to speak with other English speakers. Slowly but surely, your ability to speak in English becomes more pronounced, and you’re capable of verbalizing your thoughts with an ever increasing proficiency. Those aren’t the only changes taking place though. Your constant striving for betterment and improvement brings other changes along. You’re becoming more informed, you’re broadening your horizons and you’re becoming more intelligent. You’re becoming better at organizing your life in other areas – not just English fluency improvement – and that has a positive effect on your life quality and as a result you become more successful in everything you do! Do you think it’s not true? Well, watch the video above to hear everything I have to say in this regard! Chat soon, Robby ;-)

Simple vs Sophisticated Vocabulary? It’s All Just Semantics (Interpretation)!

Crash Course in American English Pronunciation & Slang: Interview With Anthony from AmericanAnthony.com!

I’ve been fascinated with all things American since my childhood and it’s also one of the reasons why I started learning the English language at the age of 10. To this day, however, I haven’t mastered the American English pronunciation and I don’t think it’s that important for me personally. Well, considering that I’m living in Ireland it’s hardly surprising I wouldn’t find a practical application for an American accent! :grin: Anyhow, I haven’t made it my goal to speak with a near-native Irish English pronunciation either. You see, I’ve been struggling with my English fluency for years and I’ve actually found that when I try to speak with a native English accent, it may have a detrimental effect on my ability to speak English fluently. Having said that, I often speak with different English accents when I’m on my own. And, truth be told, I’m getting better at it! Still, when I’m speaking with others in real-life, I revert back to my normal foreign accent because it’s easier for me to speak that way. Many foreign English speakers, however, aspire to adopt a certain native English accent such as British or American, and many of them are very successful in doing so. If your dream is to sound like natural American speaker and you believe it’s what you have to do, there’s a person I’d like you to meet – Anthony Krese! He’s an English teacher and on his website called AmericanAnthony.com he focuses on teaching foreign English speakers American slang and accent. In other words – he makes foreigners sound like native American English speakers! In many ways mine and Anthony’s approach to English learning and improving is very similar. We both understand that real-life English is different from the one you’ll learn in textbooks. We also realize that plenty of foreigners lack in the department of socializing skills when it comes to speaking in English in informal settings. And while I believe that my foreign origin is actually an advantage when it comes to advising other foreigners on overcoming English fluency related issues in terms of mental aspects, Anthony has a natural edge of being a native English speaker when teaching how to speak like an American. Therefore I think it’s only fair that I turn to a professional for advice on how to speak with an American accent so that we all can learn some new tips and tricks and take Anthony’s advice on board! So let’s get started! Anthony, here’s the first question for you… (more…)

30-Day Vocabulary Acquisition Course- Day 7- Meals

You’re Not Fluent in English If You Can’t Construct a Subjected Indirect Object Locative Double Passive!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jp4dbEhRo6M A couple of months ago I received a really funny comment on a blog post called Only YOU Can Decide When You’ve Become Fluent!, and here’s what Jacque said: Being fluent means one can construct a subjected indirect object locative double passive in the past habitual progressive, and following it with a wh-fronted cleft with the subject moved to object position along with an optional topicalization and postmodified adjective restricting the sentence focus, AND having no idea what the heck the above means! Personally I think it’s a BRILLIANT representation of everything that’s wrong with the traditional English studies and how it’s affected most English students’ thinking! (more…)

Answering Questions: Can’t Practice Fluency, What to Do If My Fluency Dwindles When I Speak With Others and More…

I couple of days ago one of my YouTube followers asked me the following question: The problem is that I just can't practice fluency because I'm in my country where they don't speak English although I'm really good at writing I put great efforts on my essays and powerful vocab and idioms and sentence structure yet I panic when I travel out of my country and speak in little convos which my parents are pissed of me, cause they paid a lot for good education but the result of fluency speaking is bad, plus I struggle in reading books cause every sentence I have to stop for a quick google search the meaning of the sentence. IT's really complicated. Thank you for understanding! And here's my video response to the above question: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmX5BO0gOnM Here's another question I got on YouTube: Hi Robbie, when I practice self-speaking I am very fluent but when I speak with people my fluency dwindles probably because I feel compelled to give neat responses when I can't. How can I deal with this problem? Thank you! And guess what? I also decided to record a video response and you can watch it below: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohgjYHAZPiA I hope that you'll also find these videos somewhat helpful and I would love to receive further questions from you! Just post them in the comments section below and I'll do my best to respond to them ASAP! Cheers, Your English Fluency Coach, Robby ;-)

Funny English Phrases: Death & Dying Related English Idioms

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LDgv198X3lA This is the last funny English phrase video for YearOfEnglish.com subscribers… The reason being – the year is drawing to an end, and so is my commitment to keep publishing new videos for you guys every couple of weeks! :-( That’s why I decided to publish death and dying related English phrases video today – to mark the end of the year and your journey to English fluency. Every end, however, is just a beginning to something new, so don’t get sad while watching this video – instead make sure you listen to the dialogues carefully and REPEAT the phrases you hear. Needless to say, many of those death related idioms can be used in various situations in life – not just when someone is close to passing away, so watch the video above, use the transcript below for better understanding and start using those death related English idioms in your daily conversations! (more…)

30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course- Day 8- General Talk

Improve Spoken English Fast – Focus On English Around You!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=/2f_xdJXQEb0 Check out my English Harmony System HERE! Hi folks, and welcome to the 17th English Harmony video episode! Today’s topic is about many foreign English speakers being detached from reality and focusing their English improving efforts on the wrong things. For instance, you may be working in a frozen food factory and 90% of your daily conversations with your work colleagues and superiors involve discussing different aspects of the production process, different issues that occur on a regular basis, and so on. So what would be the logical approach to improving your spoken English? I’d say it’s rather obvious – master 50 - 60 most commonly used phrases in your workplace and you’ll sound nearly as fluent as your native English speaking work colleagues :!: You may argue that any foreign English speaker will eventually master the active vocabulary used at his work anyway, but I don’t fully agree. You see – you may be so determined to become fluent at speaking English that you can end up being mentally detached from the natural environment you spend most of your time in. (more…)

Speaking in Short Sentences? It’s Normal!

What Any Foreign English Speaker Can Learn from Benicio Del Toro

One of the biggest traps that foreign English speakers fall for is trying to speak TOO FAST. You know what? Even I still fall for it every once in a while, and every time it happens I literally have to persuade myself by saying – “Robby, calm down, don’t rush, you know it for a fact that it doesn’t matter if it takes you 10 seconds longer to get the message across! Take your time, slow down and you’re going to be much easier to understand!” Yet so many foreigners are under the wrong impression that to speak fluent English you must speak fast. Well, most native English speakers would indeed speak English quite fast – just like any other native language speaker would speak their language. It’s not always the case though. There are situations when EVEN NATIVE SPEAKERS would find it hard to maintain a continuous, fast speech. Stressful environment, high expectations from others, not being familiar with the topic that’s being discussed – all these and a number of other factors may seriously impede any native English speaker’s natural ability to produce fast, continuous and uninterrupted speech. So if even native English speakers can run into such problems, why would foreigners like me and you be any different? I think that our ability to speak English shouldn’t be judged on our nationality grounds. We, just like any native English speaker, are entitled to have moments of confusion, take time to make the point, and it shouldn’t be perceived as an inability to speak fluent English. It should be taken for what it is – slower speech - and it shouldn’t be attributed to our foreign national background! On many occasions a slow and controlled manner of speech doesn’t even indicate any issues the speaker might be having. It’s just the way the particular person speaks, and whether others like it or not, they have to accept it, full stop :!: One of my favorite actors Benicio Del Toro, for example, quite often speaks slowly and takes his time choosing the right words when giving interviews. He doesn’t give a damn about what others might think about it! And mind this – he’s a Hollywood celebrity and speaks fluent English. Well, originally he’s from Puerto Rico and speaks Spanish, but he’s spent most of his life in the States and his English is absolutely fluent. So here’s what you can learn from Benicio: It’s OK to pause in a mid-sentence; It’s OK to repeat a word a number of times to buy time; It’s OK to speak very slowly! (more…)

Dominance of English and its Lack of Appreciation for Smaller Languages

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3F-gFRfWC2k Hello my fellow foreign English speakers :!: In today’s video we’re going to look at the following questions: Can English be held responsible for the demise of smaller languages? Does the English language has a lack of appreciation for other world languages? Are all English speakers ignorant and don’t want to speak other languages? Is English going to be the only language in the world in a couple of thousand years? You see, all such and similar questions are quite important to certain categories of people – especially those who represent smaller languages on the verge of extinction. Oftentimes, for example, English is blamed because of its historical connection with the British Empire and its world dominance. Also, people associate English with the United States of America and blame Americans for being ignorant and living in their own language bubble. To find out what I think about the whole thing – please watch the video above or listen to the audio file in case you can’t watch the video content for some reason or another. And of course – you’re really welcome to participate in the discussion and express your own opinion in the matter! :-) ANY comments are welcome! ;-) Regards, Robby RELATED ARTICLES: Is English Language Taking Over? Integration of Foreigners into English Speaking Society 10 Reasons Why English is the World’s Language 11 Things English Fluency has Given Me 5 Reasons Why I Love American Accent

30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course- Day 29- Easier said than done!

This article is part of the 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course. Sign up here to get every lesson in your inbox for free: (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//forms.aweber.com/form/28/1528169428.js"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, "script", "aweber-wjs-gh9mm2tmz")); Hey everybody out there, Welcome back yet again to another chapter of our “Free 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course” where you'll learn something new every day about a topic with context and examples, and so will you today. So without any ado, let’s get down to the business and see today's context- Context Robin weighted more than 100kgs which was way too much for a 20-year-old boy. He was continuously growing in size and weight which worried his parents about his health down the line. When they took him to a doctor, the test results were quite normal. Seeing the reports, the doctor confirmed that he was absolutely normal and his overweight has nothing to do with any hormonal imbalance or any disease. It was just because of the high consumption of junk foods and no physical activity. Robin’s father, John, who was an ex-army man, seemed quite concerned about his son’s health. He knew exactly how adversely this overweight could affect his son's life, so without wasting any further moment he directly went to a dietician and got a diet chart prepared for his son to follow. Noticing a continuous increase in weight, the dietician strictly forbade Robin to eat any food that’s high in fat or with added artificial preservatives. He was also advised to run 5km daily and work out as well, this way he will start losing some extra fat. Running 5km was easier said than done, but if he wanted to carry on a normal, healthy life, he just had to do it. It was tough at first, but as he got habituated to it, it became his second nature. By the way, can you run 5km at once? I know it’s easier said than done, especially if you are not running that frequently. So by now, you must have got what this expression means, don't you? I am sure you must have understood till now, but for those who are still confused, it simply means that something is easy to say but very hard to do. Example: It is easier said than done to complete the entire project work in a single day. How did you find today’s chapter? I hope it added some new vocabulary to your arsenal of active vocabulary which will be definitely useful in your daily life. Make sure you read this article thoroughly and practice it with your own examples so as they will become your second nature. See you tomorrow with some new topic and vocabulary. Till then keep learning and improving. Take care and? Bye-bye. This article is part of the 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course. Sign up here to get every lesson in your inbox for free: (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//forms.aweber.com/form/28/1528169428.js"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, "script", "aweber-wjs-gh9mm2tmz"));

Recording Your English Speech is CRUCIAL!

How I Define Real English Fluency

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=/20yRATIyU3Q There are many reasons why foreigners start learning English. For me it was being fascinated with everything that had to do with America when I was a child. For others it's necessity when they move to an English speaking country. And many are forced into learning English at school yet at the same time they acknowledge the fact that English is spoken worldwide and nowadays it's one of the basic requirements if you're willing to attain good education and advance in your career. Yet all English students would agree on one thing - English fluency is what one strives for when learning English. In order to be able to communicate with work colleagues and customers one has to be fluent in English otherwise it just won't work! But now tell me - has English fluency been defined for you by your English teacher or someone else? The chances are that you've been lead to believe that standard English tests and grades adequately reflect your English fluency. But here's the drawback - real life English fluency has little to do with your ability to complete English language tests and get high scores in them... Here's how I would define English fluency! (more…)

We Create English Fluency Issues for Ourselves!

The State of “The Flow” and Its Importance When Improving Your English

Here’s how to improve your English listening skills when listening to my video: put the headphones on, playback the video and write it all down while listening to it! Video Transcript Below Hi guys, hello boys and girls! Hello my dear fellow foreign English speakers and welcome back to Robby's English Harmony video blog! Today let's talk about THE FLOW. And I read about the concept of flow or should I say THE flow? Because it's a particular state of mind. And I read about that concept a while ago while I was doing a little bit of research into the subject of procrastination. We all – I suppose – have that quality to procrastinate sometimes. You know, it's a vice because it's a terrible feeling, you know? You know exactly what you've got to do but you just can't do it for whatever reasons. You just find yourself constantly getting distracted. For instance if I had a task of writing an article for instance I would find myself making cups of coffee every 15 minutes and checking my email and checking my website’s stats and whatever. And then 5 or 6 hours later the article still wouldn't be even started. I would have only 1 or 2 paragraphs. And so that's the typical case of procrastination. And I've been guilty of that at certain stages in my life. And I was doing a little bit of research into it and I found out that people who don't procrastinate they can achieve the state of mind whereby they are fully immersed into the activity at hand so their mind doesn't even wander. And that's the so-called state of THE FLOW. (more…)

My Honest Opinion on Developing English Listening Skills

I hate when I’m told what I didn’t ask for, and so do most people for that matter. Let’s say for instance, I walk into a drug-store and ask for slimming pills because I’m fed up with my extra weight and I want to look more masculine. The pharmacist starts telling me that I should start engaging in some physical activities, eat a balanced diet and use the pills only as a supplement. Would I listen to him? Nope! All that rant about a balanced diet and a workout regime simply wouldn’t register with me because I want the damn slimming pills which will give me the kind of a body I’m dreaming of, right? Same goes with most advice we get in life – it’s very hard to change our beliefs and opinions just because someone tries to convince us of something. Basically it boils down to this – we often hear what we want to hear, and we just screen off everything else - unless we’re really trying to analyse the matter at hand and we have an open mind while doing so :!: For example, I’ve been blogging about English fluency development for years on end, and I always point out the following things: To speak fluent English we need to engage in HEAVY SPEAKING PRACTICE, there are no magic shortcuts! Passive English immersion will mostly develop our understanding – NOT OUT ABILITY TO SPEAK! You can’t listen your way to fluency, you need to speak in order to train your mouth and mind to work together! Still there are many English teachers out there preaching the importance of English listening practice. Some even claim that first we have to spend all our time listening just like babies do, and then we’ll be able to start speaking… Now I’ll adopt the role of the pharmacist trying to tell you something you probably don’t want to hear – but I’ll give it a shot nonetheless! (more…)