Learn to Think in English – Learning Tip from Caroline

Thinking in English

Thinking In English

Perhaps one of the most difficult things to do when learning a language is to try and think in that language. It really isn’t that easy to do! However, it’s not impossible and there is a good technique which you can use.

You need to be alone and not distracted by music or any electronic devises. You could be on a train, a bus, a plane or even just walking. Take two minutes to describe to yourself, in English, everything that you can see. What you wish to look at depends of course on you, but try to describe the movement of people and objects as well as things that are stationary. Remember to use a range of language (particularly using content words such as verbs, nouns, adjectives and adverbs) to build up this picture in your head.

You may find that you do not always have the vocabulary to describe what you see. Don’t worry. When you have an opportunity look up the word you need in a translation dictionary, so that you can use it again when you come across the same context.

Another thing you could try is to practise a conversation you have had but in the new language. Talk to yourself in the mirror. You could try and record it, then go back and listen to it a little later and see if you could improve it.

Try to do this at least once a day and in different places so that you have a variety of contexts which you have thought about. Remember not to do your thinking out loud as you could easily disturb people around you! and probably get some very strange looks.  Very soon you will have got into the habit of thinking in English. Next you may even be dreaming in English!

More tips from Caroline on thinking in English here: