There are some good, regular dictionaries for English language learners – including the Learner’s Dictionary, which explains 100,000 words and phrases in simple language, with sentence examples, and pronunciation.
However, there are many times when some pictures will help you understand a word better, and more quickly. Perhaps the easiest way to see a word in pictures is with Google Images. Here are some examples of words that are easier to understand with a picture, or a set of pictures…
To be successful at learning English, Never Give Up. Study and use your English at least a little every day. Push yourself to talk with people, practice with an app or website, listen to (and sing) some songs, watch some TV/movies, etc.
Small talk is simple, polite conversation – usually with someone you don’t know very well. Making small talk is a good way to practice your English speaking – such as when you meet someone walking in your neighborhood, or waiting in line at a store. You can talk about things like the weather (“It’s a beautiful day, isn’t it?”), or someone’s cute dog.
The English word leopard has the same language origin as the Spanish and Portuguese leopardo, and the French léopard. There are many other words like this that are very similar in English and other languages. They are called “cognates”.
One good way to quickly increase your English vocabulary is to study a list of these similar words.
For Spanish, there are words like adorar (adore), mágico (magical), teatro (theater) and many more
For Portuguese, there are words like apropriado (appropriate), importância (importance), familiar (familiar), and many more
There are lists of cognates available for many other languages too – including Russian and Arabic
For more lists of cognates with English and many other languages, you can use Google. For example, in Google: English French cognates
You can try entering the same search words in YouTube to watch video lessons about these
Your English will improve if you speak or sing – out loud in English – to your dog.
But also, have you noticed that when you go walking with your dog, other dog lovers will usually be more friendly? Maybe they’ll say hello, or ask you questions about your dog, or ask, “Can I pet your dog?” Use this as a great opportunity for some small talk – short, informal conversation. Remember – the more English you speak, the more comfortable it will become.
Besides walking in your neighborhood, great places to meet other dog lovers (and for your dog, too) are parks in the area that are dog-friendly. One of the best places is Eagle Pond at Callahan State Park in Framingham (shown in picture). Here’s a list of many more.
We all tell our students that 6 hours/week of class is not enough time to learn to speak English well and we encourage them to find opportunities to speak English beyond the classroom. Last term, I told my class how important it was to be exposed to English as much as possible. This is especially important if you are not in class now.
The students were assigned the homework below. Most of them did the homework and practiced speaking English with more people.
Find someone who speaks English and whom you have never spoken to before. For example: post office clerk, supermarket cashier, waiter, etc and try to speak to them in English for a few minutes.
Write 4 or 5 sentences describing this experience – who, what, when where, etc.