I have been teaching English for more than 17 years now (!) and there are some students that always do very well in my classes. I have noticed over the years that these students always have the same study habits, and I wanted to share them with you! Maybe this is you?
- They Read in English. A lot.
My best students, the ones with the best vocabulary, grammar and writing skills are the students who spend time reading in English. Sometimes my students read novels in English, sometimes books designed for lower level English learners, sometimes the newspaper. Yet what they all have in common is that they all read, and when they read they highlight or underline new words. They make notes in the book or in a notebook to help remember these new words.
- They have a vocabulary notebook. They use their vocabulary notebook!
My best students always have a special notebook that they use for the new words they are learning. The write down words that they learn in a class, in a book or while on the bus in an English speaking country. On my INTENSIVE IMMERSION COURSES I provide students with a mini pocket notebook that I call a “capture tool”, a little pocket notebook to record the language they learn in everyday moments, to capture that vocabulary to study later so they can remember it. Go HERE to see my previous blog post about how to learn and remember a lot of vocabulary.
- They study their vocabulary notebooks every day.
In my classes I often play vocabulary review games and the students that always help their teams win (and the students who impress all the other students!) are the students who study their vocabulary notebooks every day. This is a study habit that works. Some students even take the time to use their new vocabulary in sentences, to make sure they know how to use the vocabulary.
- They listen to real English with movies, podcasts, music and TV shows or full immersion.
There are some students that have a high level of fluency – an ability to use language and intonation similar to native English speakers. These students almost always have spent a lot of time in an English speaking country or surround themselves with real English – English music, TV and movies. Go HERE to see my previous blog post about how to learn English using music, tv and movies.
- They ask questions.
My best students are also always students who ask a lot of questions. Sometimes they ask me in class, and sometimes they are more shy and ask me after class, but they always ask questions. It is important to do! One of the benefits of