Here's What You Missed in the English Language AMA Session with Swati Rai

Last updated 7 Mar 2019 . 1 min read

ama session on english language ama session on english language

How often do we get an English trainer to answer our questions directly? Even in training centers one to one interaction hardly happens. To make this possible at SHEROES we were lucky to have Swati Rai with us live for one hour in English Winglish (a community where we aim to learn and improve our English language skills together).

A freelance corporate language trainer, writer, and blogger Swati Rai writes for national dailies, magazines, and online portals.

So how was the conversation with Swati? Let’s have a look.

Here are 15 common questions asked by our community members and their answers by Swati.

#1. Hi Swati! How can I start to learn to speak fluently in English?

Swati: Hello dear! Practice speaking in front of the mirror everyday. It could be any of your thoughts on a topic that you may choose. You could also to start with reading a text for a little while to get the hang of words. Reading is a great way to build vocabulary. Lastly, practice the language with more and more people. Don't worry about making a mistake. Speak on!

#2. Thinking in mother tongue comes naturally. How to think in English?

Swati: Don't worry about thinking in English initially. Start reading, have an opinion about what you read and slowly with practice it will fall into place. Language to be learnt effectively has to be used as much as possible.

#3. Is it important to work on vocabulary? If yes, how to improve my vocabulary?

Swati: Yes vocabulary is important but what's more important is to make a long list of words read in a day as you will never remember them when you need them the most. A good idea is then to try and understand the meaning of the word from the context of the situation that it appears in. Make a note of it and then try consciously using at least one word while writing first and then in speech. There is something called Active and Passive vocabulary. We need to energize our active vocabulary by using words in our daily speech rather than store them in a notebook. A good way to improve your awareness of vocabulary especially how words go together with each other would be by listening to authentic English recordings or broadcast such as English news or even audio recording from a website.

#4. If I talk with a person who is talking fluently in English, I stop. I hesitate so much that I am unable to continue speaking in English.

Swati: Yes that happens often, dear. But more than the other person’s speech if you could focus on your own, and speak slowly at first, collecting your thoughts before you speak and most importantly not worrying about making a mistake will help.

#5. Can you recommend study materials from where I can self-teach?

Swati: You could look at useful websites for language learning that have interactive games on grammar and vocabulary that help you retain words in a better manner. For vocabulary, it is also useful to make word stems from a particular word to remember the whole family. Such as- retain, retention, retentive.

You can check grammar books by Raymond Murphy, Michael Swan etc. I would recommend using some of the websites for English language learning that are freely available on the internet.

#6. Any tips before starting to speak without hesitation?

Swati: Frame shortest sentences at first. With practice, it'll all be fine don't worry.

#7. I find it difficult to talk to myself in English. What to do?

Swati: You may find it difficult to talk to yourself in English. A good idea would be to either talk to a telemarketer as may be suitable in your context or with a friend depicting a real-life situation such as in the market or at the shop or inquiring about a new product et cetera.

#8. Do I need to register with English learning websites?

Swati: You don't have to register yourself at websites to learn English some of the most user-friendly ones are BBC learning English or British Council learn English according to your age group or any other ESL website.

#9. Is it effective to join an English training class? Do you think it helps?

Swati: For any particular brand language school, you will have to use your discretion in making an informed choice. I would suggest paying a visit to these language schools getting to know what is the course content, methodology of delivery, payment and more importantly be clear about what your goal in English language learning is.

#10. Can learning English be simple and fun?

Swati: Many websites have a fun way of learning such as grammar games etc. Try Learn English by British Council also, liking such pages on Facebook etc also gives you daily tips and ways to learn English better! There may be more such as Grammarly and many more. You will have to match your fit!

#11. I understand reading helps us to improve. But how can I read books if I don’t find them interesting?

Swati: Yes reading a novel or something that you're not interested in can become tedious or tiring. I would suggest read whatever interest so it could be entertainment, Bollywood news, sports or politics. You don't have to read a lot in a day. Start with reading a paragraph, pages and then graduate to books or newspapers.

#12. I am a teacher. How to make my students smart in English?

Swati: It depends on what you mean by smart in English. If it is the effective use of language tools then you can help them by equipping them with correct grammar and an awareness of the context in which the language is used. For that, I feel the teacher also needs to learn as I honestly believe there is no age for learning.

#13. I want to become a freelance writer like you. How did you get into this field?

Swati: I do freelance for many different portals. I started over a decade ago by simply spamming the editors with ideas that I could write on. Before that, since I was into teaching English I was also working simultaneously on honing my craft as a writer. I was reading a lot and all that fed into my writing slowly but steadily I started writing for the most important reason; to keep learning. All the best with your journey!

#14. I am an English teacher. I want to write for movies, TV series. What should I do to make this happen?

Swati: For becoming a writer in the movies you have to learn screenplay writing or short story writing or even novel writing. However, all writing has this basic principle of reading as much as you can and working on your craft. I would suggest if you're looking at movie writing to perhaps join a course which you will have to look over the internet.

#15. Apart from improving my English, what should I keep in mind if I want to become a content writer?

Swati: The main points to keep in mind when you choosing content writing as a profession I'd say would be to consider what is your niche, what market may find use of your product, how often and with what frequency can you write, is there a backup plan in case payments don't come through and have you tested your writing in the professional market earlier if so what was the response and what were the changes effected. Having said this if you feel you are the right fit for professional writing you could look at even getting the content whetted by an expert. It's also good to test the market by looking at similar writing samples and then identifying your USP! All the best! It was lovely chatting with you on the SHEROES platform. I hope that this short chat has been a useful one.

Dear readers, do you think this chat was informative and helpful? To join in more such chat sessions with experts, be a part of the English Winglish community. See you in the next expert session!

Shiny Hoque
She has been a book worm since childhood. She loves to travel and write stories of people from different cultures and lifestyles.

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