Reading in English

Extensive reading in English with the help of a good English dictionary on a variety of real life topics is one of the best ways to learn English vocabulary. Since there is an enormous amount of reading material in English, a learner of English has to prioritise reading in subjects according to learner's needs for using English to encompass first the most necessary, relevant and frequently used vocabulary. Day-to-day topics ought to come first in reading. Reading materials can be arranged by level of difficulty of vocabulary for ESL/EFL learners at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels.

Learners can master the most important English words by reading various types of text on everyday topics. The topics should include important content such as advice or tips on improving everyday life. They should contain practical solutions that the reader can think about and apply to the language they already know. These types of books are popular and very easy for the learner to get hold of. They can be found in such places as the local bookshop or online.

In addition to thematic informative texts (materials), learners can read thematic dialogues (samples of real life conversations between people), narrative realistic stories, fine literature, newspapers, magazines, Internet materials, books on various subjects, general thematic English dictionaries, etc.

Good general thematic English dictionaries arrange vocabulary by subject matter (topics) and give easy to understand explanations. The explanations also come with example sentences that show the usage of the word, which are of great value to the learner. English synonym dictionaries provide usage explanations and usage examples for words with similar meaning. General English dictionaries along with synonym dictionaries are a useful tool for gaining a greater understanding of vocabulary. This in turn can be used in the real life of the learner and applied in a variety of circumstances.

Good public libraries and the Internet have a wide selection of English reading materials. It is better for ESL/EFL learners to write down unknown vocabulary in whole sentences to remember word meanings easier. It would be good speaking practice for learners to tell someone the content of the texts that they have read. Learners can write key words and phrases, or main ideas as a plan, or questions on the text that require long answers to make it easier for learners to tell the content of a text. It is also a good idea to read each logical chunk or paragraph of a text and to narrate each paragraph separately, and then the whole text.

Written by Michael Shelby

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