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Easiest Ways To Speak English Like A True Native Speaker

If you are learning to speak English and you want to sound like the real deal you might think that it is going to take a lot of hard work. However, it may not be as hard as you would expect. There are steps you can take to sound more fluent than you are.

Here are 6 of the easiest ways to speak English like a true native speaker.

1. Learn The Slang

English speakers use a lot of slang and so if you can get to grips with the basics of their slang you will have a great head start. Slang is the use of informal words and phrases, you will hear it more in conversation as opposed to written form. So you won’t find out much about English slang in a history book for example, but you will if you watch a current English-speaking tv show.

Slang tends to use shortening of words, for example instead of ‘want to’ this will be changed to ‘wanna’. Another similar example is ‘going to’ being changed into ‘gonna’. By mastering these simple slang words you will instantly sound like a true native speaker. It is important to use slang in the right context, for instance, if you are hanging out with friends in a casual and informal setting then slang can be appropriate. However, if you were going to a job interview or talking in a professional and formal context, then using slang is a big no-no. To speak like a local you will need to gradually start to incorporate slang into your vocabulary, however, make sure that you understand the meaning of words you are using and that they are up to date. If you use out-of-date slang / or offensive words in a strange context it will be painfully clear that you are not fluent.

2. Familiarise Yourself With Different Accents

Native English speakers possess a wide range of different accents. If you use the United Kingdom as an example they have scouse, northern, brummie, cockney, and many more. Similar to the United States they have all sorts of accents such as southern and New Yorkers. Depending on where you want to go will decide which accent you should focus on. Additionally, some are harder than others so the best option for you is to go for the milder accents as they will be easier to understand and imitate.

3. Imitate English Pronunciation

That brings us nicely onto our next point, which is to imitate English pronunciation. Again, this will vary from place to place but focus on where is relevant to you. Stick to the milder accents because if you try too hard to mimic a stronger accent there is more room for error. The same word can be pronounced quite differently from region to region. For instance, the word ‘water’, a lot of native speakers from the UK drop the ‘t’ sound, saying the word as ‘wa’er’. One way to get to grips with this is to watch videos on Youtube of people imitating native English speakers and then try and copy the video. You could even record yourself so that you can listen back and see what needs improving and what’s hit the nail on the head.

4. Learn The Flow

Pronunciation is important, however, it is not everything. Flow comes from the rhythm and pace that native speakers talk at. The pitch can go up and down in a sentence, and this change of pitch is important because it indicates an emphasis on a particular word. Also, native English speakers will increase the volume of their voice and drag out words to make a longer sound if there is something important being said. Learning the flow of a language can be difficult, but once you start to immerse yourself in that setting your brain will begin to mimic the flow without you even realizing it.

5. Understand English Idioms

The English language has a lot of strange idioms. An idiom is a phrase whose meanings are not clear from the words being used. It sounds confusing, and it can be if you don’t know the common ones. An example is one person telling another to ‘break a leg’, they do not literally mean they want you to break a leg, but rather it is a saying used to wish another person good luck. Another example of an idiom is to ‘go cold turkey’, if you have never heard this before it would be really confusing and hard to depict its meaning. What it actually means is to stop something altogether, for instance, if someone wants to stop smoking, instead of slowly weaning themselves off they might quit cold turkey (all at once).

Idioms are used less regularly than slang but they do come up now and again, and if you want to speak and sound like a true English native speaker then you should brush up on your knowledge of common English idioms.

6. Watch English TV Shows

This point is always a crowd-pleaser as your homework to improve your English speaking abilities is to watch English speaking TV shows. This will help immerse you in English culture and help you to perfect your pronunciation, flow, and use of relevant and up-to-date slang. There will be vast differences between British and American TV shows, so if you are trying to mimic a specific accent then try to watch shows from that country. For instance, if you are moving to the UK as a young adult you could watch the TV show Skins to get a good feel for flow and enunciation. Alternatively, if you were moving to The east side of America you could watch Gilmore Girls or Gossip Girl. Even though these shows are a bit older now, they will still be effective in helping you perfect your accent.

So there you have it, 6 of the easiest ways to speak like a true English native speaker. It does not have to be as hard as you might expect, and in fact, it can be a fun process. You just have to dedicate the time to it, be patient and enjoy yourself.

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