Monday, December 3, 2018

How to speak in English? Part 3

Speak English

Tip 1: How to build vocabulary? (Speak-English)

A sentence is made up of words.  Many times you know how to speak about the sentence but you don’t find words to express them.  So vocabulary must be built right from the beginning of learning English. Here’s how:

1. Five words a day: Make sure you are learning five new words each day. By the end of the month, you will have 150 new words in your vocabulary. And this will enable you to use words on a daily basis to use English.

2.Thematic vocabulary: Pick a theme and learn words accordingly. For example, say office furniture. Do you know all the words for things kept in your office? Similarly, take body parts, kitchenware, transport, etc. You must have words for each of these themes since you will need them every day.

3.Usage v/s Cramming: Cramming up words never really helps in remembering them. The best way to recall words whenever required is to use them. Make a target of using the words you learned during the entire day in sentences.

4.Associate words: It is so important to associate words with things that you see. For example, if you are learning body parts, you must have a picture of the human body before your eyes. Words get registered in your memory better when you associate them visually.

5. Maintain a diary: Make a diary of new words with their sentences. Make an index of words and write them thematically. That way, in case you need some words, you can always look into your diary for reference. However, you must not depend on your diary all the time.



Tip 2: How to construct simple sentences? (Speak-English)

The English language follows a structure that is slightly different from Hindi or any other Indian language. In order to create sentences, you should know the following:

Simple Sentence Structure in English

  • The subject is the person, place or thing you are talking about.
  • A verb is an action or what the subject is doing.
  • An object can be a person, place or thing about which we talk and it can be directly or indirectly associated with the subject.


1) She is a doctor.

She is the subject. Is is the verb here. A doctor is not an object but just a word that describes a quality. It describes the professional status of the subject.

2) Rita writes her homework.

Rita is the subject. Writes is the verb. Homework is the object.

3) He told a lie.

He is the subject. Told is the verb. A lie is an object

Three steps to construct a Sentence(Speak-English)

Step 1:  Determine what’s your subject, your verb, and your object?

Step 2: Determine what time-frame you are in, that is, what is the tense/time required here.

Step 3: Check if your subject agrees with the verb. That is, if your subject is singular, your verb should be singular. If your subject is plural, your verb should be plural.

Practical one:

Step 1: My subject is Rahul. My verb is Write. My object is Diary.

Step 2: My time is simple present tense because I am talking about Rahul’s regular habit.

Step 3: Rahul is a singular subject. My time frame is simple present tense so I will have to use the singular present form of Write, which is Writes.

My sentence: Rahul writes a diary.

Practical two: 

Step 1: My subject is Indian cricket team. My verb is Win. My object is Match.

Step 2: My time is past tense because I am talking about yesterday’s match.

Step 3: Indian Cricket Team is a singular subject. My time frame is simple past tense, And so I will use 'Won' the past form of Win.

My Sentence: Indian Cricket Team won the match.

Tip 3: How to construct complex sentences? (Speak-English)

The complexity of sentences in English depends on tenses, prepositions and conjunctions and many other parts of speech.

Sentences become complex with advanced tenses

A simple Subject-Verb-Object structure changes when we use more advanced timeframes/tenses. In a simple present and simple past tense, the given structure is followed. But when it comes to continuous and perfect tenses, the structure also involves helping verbs. Helping verbs are words that are used with main verbs. Such as is, was, am, were, has, have, had etc.

Complex Sentence Structure 1

Subject-helping verb-Verb-Object (in continuous and perfect tenses)


1. Smita is reading the book.

Here, Smita is the subject; Is is the helping verb; reading is the main verb and book is the object.

2. Kartik has completed the task.

Here, Kartik is the subject; has is the helping verb; completed is the main verb and task is the object.

Complex Sentence Structure 1 (a)

Subject-helping verb-been-Verb-Object- Since/for-Time (in perfect continuous tenses)


1. Smita has been reading the book since 7 pm.

Here, Smita is the subject; Has is the helping verb; there is "been" which shows perfect continuous tense; Reading is the main verb; for describing the time frame "since" is used as the subject is reading continuously from 7pm.

Sentences become complex with conjunctions

Complex Sentence Structure 2


or Subject-Helping Verb-Verb-Object-Conjunction-Subject-Verb-Object


1. She read that book because it was good.

Here, She is the subject; Read is the verb; a book is an object; because is the conjunction and so on.

2. She has completed the task as she is always on time.

Here, She is the subject; Has is the helping verb; Completed is the main verb; as is a conjunction and so on.

Sentences become complex with adverbs, adjectives, prepositions also

The above given two structures are just to get you started on constructing English sentences. When you insert more parts of speech such as adverbs, adjectives, prepositions etc, your sentences become more complex.


1. Rakhi is an intelligent girl who lives in that house.

2. The cat climbed on the wall and sat there for a long time.

3. Rohan told me how he had completed his homework on time.

4. Before you attempt any of these structures, it is advisable to learn all the parts of speech.

Tip 4: Common Errors(Speak-English)

As the volume of English increases in your life, you are prone to commit some common errors in the English language. It is not only obvious but also important because your mistakes will help you learn. Here’s a checklist of common errors committed by beginners so they could correct their mistakes:

Subject-Verb Agreement: You must be saying sentences such as She go to the market or They were in the school. This means you need to correct which verbs to use with which subjects. Remember, a singular subject always takes a singular verb and a plural subject takes a plural verb. Ex- She goes to the market. They were in school. The only exception to this rule is  ‘You’ which always takes plural verbs. Ex- You are smart. You have a car. You do not understand.

Didn’t took/Doesn’t gets: With Do, Does and Did, the verb is always used in the original form.  With did/didn't always use the present tense of the verb and with does/doesn't always use a singular verb. Ex- He did not take his bag. They do not work-out. She does not eat well. Didn’t took and Doesn’t gets etc are wrong usages.

India: Remember the question Sridevi had asked her teacher in the movie English-winglish? She had asked why the United States, why not India. This is a common error. Often students say things like The Rahul or The Indore. Please remember that with proper nouns such as Rahul, Indore, India, America etc, we Never use them. As for the question, ‘the’ is used with ‘the US’ because it is a title. We will never say ‘the America’ because here the title is not used.

Return back/Came to home: These are called errors of redundancy. This means you are using words, which are not required. Take for example in ‘return back’, the word back is not necessary because return already means come back. Similarly, with home, we never use the preposition ‘to’. It always comes back home, returned home, reached home etc.

Tip 5: Mastering Pronunciation(Speak-English)

Learning pronunciation of words is like trying to explore an ocean. It is hard to determine where and how to begin. In English, thus, you can be really distracted and feel lost when it comes to starting to learn pronunciation.

Vowels are a,e,i,o,u. You will rarely come across a word that does not have any of these vowels. And so pronunciation almost depends on your correct pronunciation of Vowels.

Did you notice that Bad is very different from Bed? Or Kin is pronounced very differently than Keen. The difference is due to Short Vowel pronunciation and Long Vowel pronunciation. 

There are two main pronunciation elements that you need to master. They are:

- Short Vowels

- Long Vowels.

Short Vowels

Now you already know that vowels are a,e, I,o,u. When the pronunciation of these letters in words is quicker and shorter, they become Short Vowels.

- Short “a” Words

act, apt, ask, bat, bad, cab, dad, fad, gap,hat, jab, jam, lab, lap, man, nap, pan

- Short “e” Words

Ben, den, fed, gem, hen, jet, Ken, let, men, net, pen, red, set, ten, Ted

- Short “ i” Words

bin, dim, fin, gig, hip, jib, kin, lid, pin, rid, sit, tip, win, zip

- Short “o” Words

bop, con, Don, got, log, mop, not, pod, rot, Tom

- Short “u” Words

bun, bum, bus, bud, bug, but, cud, cut, cup, dug, fun, gun, gum

You need to practice the Short Vowels a lot before you switch to Long Vowels.

Long Vowels

Long Vowels are words that have the a,e, i,o,u but with a lot of emphases.

- Long a (?) sounds

ape, snail, ache, explain, and reindeer

- Long e (?) sounds

eat, agony, needle, pianist, and electricity

- Long i (?) sounds

eye, cry, tightrope, tile, and violin

- Long o (?) sounds

oh, domino, ghost, pillow, and stethoscope

- Long u (?) sounds

you, salute, toothbrush, goose, boot, and costume

You must find out the right pronunciation of each of these sounds to get a clue of many other words that have either Short Vowels or Long Vowels. This is a clear direction to begin learning pronunciation. There are really no tricks but only clues to master the right pronunciation. Go to websites like that gives you audio pronunciation.

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