First steps; What is the best way to get started in this dive?
Since you have found our Break Diving website, it's likely you already speak some English. That's great. It's also likely, however, that you have picked up some bad habits along the way. For example, if you learned English with a teacher who didn’t emphasize proper pronunciation and proper grammar, you may think you already speak English well, when in reality, no one can understand clearly what you are saying or comprehend your sentence structure! So, to get started with English (for the first time), or to get started improving your English (if you already know the basics), it’s imperative (that means REQUIRED & SUPER IMPORTANT) that you make sure that your number one focus from this point forward is on perfect pronunciation and perfect grammar.
Perfect pronunciation and perfect grammar are perhaps more important with English than with any other language. Why? Simple. It's because you will end up using English in more countries around the world than any other language. Therefore, having those two things (perfect pronunciation and perfect grammar) will pave the way for your future language success in English because you're going to be speaking English with people from many different countries! Side Note: pronunciation and accent are two different things. You can keep your accent, but just make sure the words are all pronounced correctly.
So improving your grammar and pronunciation is key. Got it? But here is another key issue: when you speak and practice, most people will try to be polite to you and will never tell you that your pronunciation is wrong or that your grammar is incorrect. Why? They don’t want to ‘offend’ you. But the truth is--these people aren’t doing you any favors. They are reinforcing your bad habits, making every new word you learn less valuable because you will end up saying it with the wrong pronunciation, and using it improperly. What good is knowing 10,000 words if no one can understand you and you don’t use the words properly? Worst of all, what good is learning English if you constantly leave out the crucially important small helper words like "a", "the", "of", etc.?
So how to get started? Start over. Go back to the basics. Make sure that your foundational pronunciation and grammar skills are ROCK SOLID. Don’t spend more time learning vocabulary, phrases, etc. until you first make sure you know how to say all the words you already know correctly, and until you first make sure you are using the correct grammar and helper words. Once you’ve done that, then go ahead and start learning new words and phrases. It is only when your pronunciation and grammar are correct that you will be well on your way to eventually speaking fluently.
Finally please, ask EVERYONE you know to correct your English. Always. It’s the quickest way to improve--via instant correction.
So to get started, your first steps should be... to go to the next article!