Saturday, July 10, 2010

Five Ways to Improve Your English Reading Comprehension

Improving your ability to read English quickly and accurately takes a great deal of practice. However, you don’t have to read boring materials that or ones that contain words and concepts you aren’t interested in. Once you know the basic elements of the English language, you can select from a wide variety of reading materials, including different methods of presentation. Here are a few fun ways to improve your English reading comprehension.

PLAY WORD GAMES

Today, crossword puzzles and other types of word game puzzles entertain native and non-native English speakers of all ages. If you’re looking for a way to improve your vocabulary and have fun at the same time, these types of puzzles can be of immense help to you. If this is something that interests you, you might also consider Scrabble, word searches and other similar games.

TAKE A SPEED READING COURSE

If you aren’t interested in word games, you might want to try taking a course in speed reading. These lessons will teach you how to pick key words out of a paragraph and understand the message without having to read each sentence word for word. That said, if you’re having difficulty isolating nouns and verbs, you may need to practice more before you try taking these courses.

TAKE NOTES ON SUBJECTS THAT INTEREST YOU

If you’re reading a book on a topic that you enjoy, take some notes. These can be verbatim samples from the text or you can try putting sections in your own words. As you write, you’ll also have an opportunity to think about the sentence structures and see how ideas are conveyed. This will help you learn to discuss these topics in a way that sounds more natural.

SELECT MATERIALS THAT WILL CHALLENGE YOU

Just like with physical exercise, you need to constantly set new goals for yourself so that you continue to progress and improve. For example, if you’re able to work your way through a 100 page children’s book, it’s time to start tackling a longer book or one on a more difficult topic. Regardless of which subjects interest you the most, you’ll be able to find some books that are harder to comprehend than others. By applying yourself to the ones that are more difficult, you’ll gain increased mastery over written English.

READ MATERIALS FROM MANY DIFFERENT AUTHORS

Considering the number of people that have websites, it’s easy to sample a wide range of English writing styles. This will help you to learn about the flexibility of the English language, as well as the means of expression that most people are comfortable with. If you already know a great deal about a certain topic in your native language, you can use that background to help you read websites in English that focus on similar concepts.

For the most part, once you know the basic elements of the English language, practice and time will be your most valuable teachers. It’s important to spend time reading materials that interest you in as many forms as possible and to spice up your practice with things like word games and speed reading classes. Over time – and with hard work – you’ll see dramatic improvements in your comprehension of written English.

1 comment:

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