Practice Makes Perfect: 5 Tips On Improving Your English Grammar
Though it doesn’t rank at the very top, English is one of the hardest languages in the world to learn from scratch. One of the key reasons why English is so difficult is because of the particular grammar that we have to use in every sentence. There’s a certain structure that goes into everything you say or write, so just one thing out of place can be confusing for listeners and readers.
With that in mind, there are some tips you can take to heart to improve your English grammar. Follow these quick rules, and you’ll be reading, writing, and speaking perfect English in no time.
5. Parts of Speech
One of the hardest parts of the English language to learn is memorizing the parts of speech. All the way through college courses, the parts of speech are relearned by students taking classes. If you’re still wondering about the parts of speech, here’s a quick reminder of all nine and what they mean:
- Adjectives (descriptive word or phrase attached to a noun, i.e. smart)
- Adverbs (modification or qualification of a verb, i.e. gently, then)
- Articles (a word that comes before a noun, i.e. the, an)
- Conjunctions (connection of clauses or sentences, i.e. but, if)
- Interjections (exclamation that is independent of surrounding words)
- Nouns (person, place, or thing)
- Prepositions (a word before a noun relating to another word, i.e. after, on)
- Pronouns (a word that can replace a noun, i.e. they, he)
- Verbs (a word that shows action, i.e., eat, dance)
4. Speaking Leads to Writing
If you’re by yourself or with people that don’t mind when you read things out loud, always try to recite everything that you’re reading when learning a new language. When you’re speaking with perfect grammar, it will become a habit. This is why things like flashcards are so useful for people that are learning something for the first time.
Whether it be a book, an article that you’re reading online, an email, or anything that’s written in English, try to sound it out to he best of your abilities. You may find that this improves your grammar quicker than you thought imaginable.
3. Learn From Grammar Checkers
Thankfully, the internet is available to people worldwide and has allowed us to type in other languages without too much difficulty due to grammar checkers. These downloadable apps and browser extensions can instantly check your writing for grammatical errors. Always take notes of the corrections that were made, that way you know for the future what to look out for.
Just use a bit of caution when using a grammar checker, however. Sometimes a suggestion will be made that doesn’t make sense in the context of a sentence. If you feel like the suggestion doesn’t work, you can send the suggestion as a report to better enhance the AI’s algorithm and learning.
2. Read Until You Drop
The easiest way to learn any language is to read continuously, and English is no exception. Sometimes, memorization is the best way of learning things. When you memorize where certain words go into sentences, that will stick with you and improve your grammar. This also lets you know when and where to use particular types of punctuation.
You won’t need to read an entire novel every day to get a good grasp of the English language. Reading news articles is a great way to perfect your grammar, especially through outlets that use AP (Associated Press) style writing as there are very stringent rules.
1. Perfect Homophones
When two or more words have the exact same pronunciation but have different meanings, those are referred to as homophones. There are some very common ones that get misconstrued even by those that speak and write in English on a daily basis. Here is a list of some of the trickier homophones and their meanings:
- There (in, at, or to that place or position)
- Their (possessive
- They’re (contraction of they are)
- Pail (bucket)
- Pale (very lightly colored)
- Tale (story)
- Tail (animal appendage)
- Aloud (creating noise)
- Allowed (receiving permission)
- Brake (used to stop cars or bikes)
- Break (relaxing or snapping something)