Happy new year everyone!
I hope you all had a wonderful new year despite the craziness of 2020.
This time last year, I began a journey to exercise and become healthier. For 10 months I worked hard and started to feel better about my body image, and then my birthday month came around (November) and I thought to myself “It’s my birthday! I should relax and eat lots of cake”. This is exactly what I did, and then December came around, and I thought to myself “It’s Christmas! I should relax and eat lots of cake”. So now it’s been 2 months without exercising and being careful about what I eat, trying to find the motivation to start again.
I suppose, in many ways, this must be what many of you are feeling about learning English. Corona Virus has prevented all of us from travelling, which was the source for a lot of people’s motivation to learn, so how can we motivate ourselves now?
I think the best way I use to motivate myself is set myself smaller goals on the road to achieve the bigger goal to feel some accomplishment. In my case, being able to do a certain amount of push ups/ pull ups in a day without feeling like I’m dying. So what goals can we set ourselves with English?
One good thing you could do is try and read an entire book in English in 1 or 2 months. Start with easier books maybe designed for children or teenagers,
Some good ones to start are:
Mieko and the Fifth Treasure” Which is a short book (only 77 pages) about a Japanese girl who has a passion for calligraphy, who becomes a victim of war, and struggles to find her inner joy that inspires her passion.
“Charlottes Web” One of the most famous stories back in England that everybody reads at one point in their life. Charlotte’s Web is the story of a small pig who lives on a farm and befriends a spider called Charlotte. Charlotte the spider knows that the farmers are planning to kill the pig, but she promises to make a plan to save his life.
And of course, “Harry potter” Harry potter can be a little tricky as it has a lot of made up words that can be confusing, however, it is a story many people already know so can make it a littler easier to understand.
If you’re struggling to find a good book, choosing anything published by “penguin” is a good idea as they are often shorter stories and classics, or you could as one of us OEC teachers for recommendations. One of my all time favourites, (if you’re not afraid of darker novels) is “1984r”
So, if you’re not a reading fan, what else can we do?
A good thing to do is have a word of the day, or even week!
Every day, Webster dictionary posts a word of the day. You can challenge yourself to check it when you can and learn and memorize it and try and use it in conversation, you can find the word of the day here.
This can often be some advanced English, so if that is too much of a challenge, you can make your own word of the day using some of your past OEC lessons. Pick a word you learnt but don’t use and try and memorize it more!
Another good way is to think about topics you enjoy talking about in Japanese and try and speak about it in English non-stop for 1 minute. When you can do that easily, increase the time by another minute, and then another. Try and choose a different topic every time. You can even ask us to help you with that! You can speak to us about the topic and we can give you any corrections, we love to listen to you talk about things your passionate about!
And finally, you can simply do what I am doing now! Start a blog in English! I’m sure yours would be far more interesting than mine!
That’s enough from me! I hope to see you soon!