Most of us study a foreign language in school for years, focusing on grammar and writing skills, reading books and writing essays, only to discover that we can’t put two words together when the situation requires it.
That’s why online platforms like Preply.com are so helpful!
If you want to learn Czech, for example, you could access this page https://preply.com/en/skype/czech-tutors and look for private tutors that could help you improve more than just your grammar and writing skills.
With that in mind, here’s why conversation activities are important and what you can do to improve your language.
The Importance Of Conversation Activities
Let’s face it: speaking and listening are at the heart of being fluent in any language. But, getting to the point where you have enough confidence to express yourself orally in that language takes a while and cannot be done without practice.
That is why putting yourself in situations where you have to speak the language and listen to others is crucial if you truly want to take your skills to the next level.
Some experts even claim that it’s quite easier to learn to read and write if you start by practicing your oral skills first.
Whichever tactic you choose, making sure that your study plan also includes frequent conversations is paramount. Just think about it: do you think piano players just concentrate on learning how to read sheets?
They practice playing the instrument until their hands fall off and they feel like they’ve finally got the hang of it.
You should do the same. After all, you won’t be able to write powerful essays if you can’t handle the conversational aspect of a language.
1. Quality Beats Quantity
So now that we’ve established how crucial conversations are, we should also stress the importance of their quality.
Listen-and-repeat schemes may work when you’re a complete beginner, and you’re having your first contact with the language in question, but if you want to get better at it, you should try to use what you’ve learned so far, from vocabulary to grammar.
And don’t worry about butchering the language!
You will do it anyway, at least when you first open your mouth and start getting used to expressing yourself.
But it’s natural, everyone does it, and it’s expected to be this way, especially if it’s a completely different language than your native one.
Go ahead and talk to anyone you think you would enjoy having a conversation with, whether it’s a close friend or just a study buddy.
If you’re wondering what the best conversation activities are, here are a few examples that can get you started.
2. Sing Songs
If you and your friends are fans of karaoke, you’re going to love this.
Prepare a few foreign songs and then battle to see which one does the best interpretation, pronunciation-wise. A little competition will make you put some real effort in it and pay attention to how the words sound.
Or, if you want to make everything more fun, you can pick an English song, translate it into your foreign language of choice, and then try to sing it in that language. You will find it’s quite difficult to translate some lyrics.
3. Go Shopping
This tactic works best if you’re traveling and find yourself in real-life situations. But if you’re not, you can still work on your skills at home.
Pretend you’re a salesman and your friend is the client or vice-versa, and try persuading him to buy your products.
You will have to pitch whatever it is you’re selling and make a note of all its benefits and how it would change your supposed client’s life.
The activity will seriously work on your vocabulary skills, as well as force you to adapt to your interlocutor.
This Or That
Play a game where you ask life-and-death questions, such as “Chocolate or Vanilla?” or “Ketchup or Mustard?” Not only will you expand your vocabulary, but you will also learn new things you didn’t know about your friends.
There are countless ways you could work on your oral skills.
In the end, the person you choose as a partner and the things you talk about are not as important as the fact that you do it.
So, go out there and start practicing!