5 Strategies for Improving Your English Conversation Skills

intensive english programs
Teachers and CultureWorks alumni catch up and exchange stories.

If you’ve decided to enroll in an intensive English program in Canada, then you’ve already made an important first step to becoming a fluent English speaker.

One of the biggest benefits of studying English abroad is getting the chance to practise your speaking skills every single day as you communicate with locals and complete assignments for your ESL classes.

Looking for ways to improve your English conversation skills even faster? Here are a few tips to improve your fluency and build your confidence.

Connect with Native English Speakers

Many ESL and intensive English programs will encourage you to meet locals so that you can practise your English with native speakers. Conversations with experienced English speakers help you learn syntax, understand expressions, and improve your fluency.

But we understand that meeting new people can be hard! That’s why CultureWorks organizes activities on campus and in the community so ESL students can make those connections more easily.

esl school in Canada
CultureWorks students at a cooking workshop

Don’t Worry Too Much About Perfect Grammar

Grammar is important, and when you attend esl school in Canada you’ll learn all about the rules and how to apply them. But if you focus too much on planning the perfect sentence, you’ll probably never speak up at all!

When you’re making conversation, don’t worry about little mistakes. Your friends will still understand you even if you use the wrong tense or forget how to correctly conjugate a verb. The important thing is that you’re communicating and building confidence through practise (not perfection!).

Practise Your Vocabulary With Karaoke

Karaoke is a fun way to spend time with new friends – and a popular activity in Canada. Plus, since each song comes with written lyrics, you will learn new words by listening, reading, and speaking – all at the same time. You’ll have such a great time singing, you won’t even realize you’re improving your pronunciation, fluency and comprehension skills.

english courses
CultureWorks students and teachers sing at our Christmas party.

Improve Your Enunciation by Imitating Others

Part of learning English is about learning to enunciate new sounds correctly. You want to make sure that you don’t speak too fast or too slow, and that people can understand you. One fun way to practise English is by imitating famous people.

Pretend that you’re the Queen of England, the President of the United States, Canada’s Prime Minister, or your favourite English-speaking actor. Copying a line or two of their dialogue will require you to speak slowly and carefully, while paying careful attention to new words and how to pronounce them.

Keep it Simple!

Long, complicated words and phrases might sound impressive in an essay, but when you’re learning English, it’s much wiser to keep things simple. Small words and short phrases will help you communicate more clearly and help conversations progress more easily. The longer your conversations, the faster you will learn!

Want to learn English in Canada to prepare for university? Check out CultureWorks to see if our English courses for Carleton University or one of our other partner schools is right for you.