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#5. Practising all four skills equally

Updated: Aug 28

By the time most of us finish school, language learning has remained mostly theoretical. Bar the occasional listening/comprehension activities and rare opportunities to speak in front of the whole class, which most students dread, most of our time was spent doing grammar exercises and rote learning.

Learning a language means practising all four skills – listening, speaking, reading, and writing – equally. For our brain to acquire language, it needs to recognise a word when coming across it on a page and in a conversation, in order to be able to either write it or speak it.

If your car only has two wheels, you won’t be able to drive it far nor well. And, most likely, you will soon stop trying. Similarly, if you only know how to write and read a word, you’re unlikely to either speak it, or recognise it, when you hear it.

On the other hand, if you practise all four skills consistently, even if it’s half an hour a day, you will soon make progress and drive your car, slowly at first but, gradually, as you grow more confident, faster and faster.

More about my teaching approach

Don't hesitate to send me your questions.

#1. Is it too late to learn a language?

#2. Not knowing the word is not the end of the conversation

#3. Is learning vocabulary lists a good idea?

#4. Should I use bilingual books?

#5. Practising all four skills equally

#6. On the importance of making mistakes

#7. You know more than you think you do

#8. Can everyone learn a language?

#9. With or without subtitles?

#10. Should I use a dictionary?

#11. What's the main obstacle when learning a language?

#12. There's no such thing as perfect sentences

#13. Learning French when English is your mother tongue

#14. Listening is key

#15. Language learning does not mean translating

#16. The right tools to learn a language

#17. Why grammar matters

#18. Leaving your linguistic comfort zone behind

#19. About rote learning

#20. Assessing your own level

#21. Language learning is pattern spotting

#22. Key skills you need to learn a language

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