Reading is one of the best ways to improve your command of the English language. It enhances your vocabulary. It boosts your brainpower and confidence. However, we seldom read English texts at home, partly because of our busy lifestyle. When we read, we prefer a language we are more comfortable in.
Now, that won’t do you any good. Especially if you, or your kids, are facing an IELTS test in Singapore. You’ve got to find ways to encourage reading at home after your classes.
Here’s how you can achieve that.
Create an Environment Where English is “Important”
Our minds, by default, question the logic of doing something or undertaking a task. When the thesis is sufficiently reasonable, then the mind will willingly take up the responsibility. But, we tend to take short cuts when there’s an “easier” alternative. Unless you make English an essential part of the home environment, then the logic of reading will not meet the “sufficiently reasonable” threshold.
Change the environment and make English an essential part of your home. Start by placing vital signs and labels at home in English. If you love having inspirational messages at home, use an English translation of the text. Have an “only English” hour at home. Where everyone communicates in English only. It will help you prepare for the general training section of the IELTS test in Singapore.
Use Written English as a Significant Part of Communication at Home
Communicating with those whom we live with is not just inevitable; it is essential. However, most communication at home is verbal. We often prefer a phone call to a text message or face-to-face discussions instead of writing notes. We seldom write requests or instructions.
Verbal communication is vital, and the immediate response is excellent. But, you can make written English a significant part of the conversation at home.
Start by frequently writing to your family about the mundane stuff. Ask them to do the same for you. As you do it more regularly, written English becomes a vital part of communication at home. Eventually, you’ll be reading daily and supplement your classwork tremendously.
Don’t Restrict Out-Loud Reading to Bed Time or Early Childhood
If you have enrolled for IELTS lessons in Singapore, you can boost your language skills by reading aloud while at home.
Reading aloud is not just a preserve of children or bedtime stories. Studies show that frequent reading aloud between adults can enhance interactions. As you read to your family, not only do you enhance relationships, you will also build on your language skills.
Be Careful When Picking an Audience to Correct or Critique
Confidence is essential when learning a new language. Especially if you are facing an assessment such as the IELTS tests in Singapore. Encouragement builds confidence. But harsh correction or insensitive criticism breeds timidity.
Choose your audience carefully. Read aloud to people who would give you gentle and reassuring correction. Avoid insensitive or overly harsh critiques.
Pack Your Home and Environment with Appropriate Reading Material
You won’t make headway in any of the above steps if you don’t have reading materials close to you. So, pack your home, including your digital environment, with reading materials and make it easy to retrieve and read.