I've always been asked by my students on how can they improve their English. There's no shortcut to improve your language ability in any languages. We have to put so much efforts and the most important thing is the passion to learn more and never quit. Most of us have learned English since kindergarten but we are still not confident enough to communicate in English. This is because we seldom use English and when we need to use it, we feel so inferior especially in front of the native speakers. Little that we realize, they themselves are not really aware of the correct usage of grammar. It's like when we use our Bahasa Melayu. How many of us use the correct BM everytime we speak BM? Not so many right? SO.....just think about that the next time, you struggle or feeling not confident to use English.
OKAY. Let's get back to the BORING TOPIC here. (yup I know it's boring *yawn*).
HERE ARE SOME COMMON SUGGESTIONS AND ALSO MY OWN INPUTS FOR THE SUGGESTIONS:
1. Read a lot of English books, magazines, newspapers or even blogs!
This is the easiest way to increase your vocabulary and at the same time, pick up the correct English grammar. If you say "I don't have time", you are just using the excuse that can hinder you from improving your English. Choose the material that you love the most as some people prefer to read novels, some love magazines and I myself prefer to read blogs nowadays. hehe
2. Practice using English whenever and wherever possible.
Basically the saying "Practice makes perfect" is TRUE. I reckon most of us know that but we still use again thousands excuses not to practice. Based on my own experiences dealing with students who are not the native speakers, they usually feel so insecure, not confident and afraid to make grammatical errors and mistakes I want to ensure you that no one really check your grammar or even able to point out your mistakes unless the person is the linguists in English or maybe she is an English teacher. Yup, I myself an English teacher BUT I never try to correct anybody's mistakes unless it is meant for teaching.
3. Watch English movies, listen to English songs. (not just for entertainment sake)
My abah was the one who encouraged me to watch English movies with him when I was younger. He would asked me to accompany him to watch Midnight Movie on TV2 on Saturday night. He asked me not to depend on the subtitle (bcs the translation is sorry to say misleading and suck!) but trying to fully use my listening skills to understand what the actors trying to say. As for English songs, I choose the one that suit me like ballads because it's easy to listen to the lyrics compared to Hip Hop, Under ground music.
I better stop here now before most of you who are reading this entry fall into deep sleep. hehehe.
But seriously, I hope that this can help those who think they are not good in English. There's always some room for improvement as long as you never stop trying.