Category Archives: An American in Madrid

HOW TO MOTIVATE YOURSELF TO LEARN ENGLISH THIS AUTUMN

WATCH A FILM

Watching a film (or TV series) that you already know you enjoy can keep you motivated as you’ll already have an idea of what they’re talking about and the kinds of things that are being said, which means you won’t need to concentrate as much on the storyline and you can pay more attention to the language being used. If necessary, try turning on the subtitles IN ENGLISH so that you can read and listen at the same time (but be aware that sometimes the text doesn’t always match the audio 100%)

SPEAK TO FOREIGNERS

Here in Spain, there are so many English-speaking foreigners that you won’t have to look hard to find native English speakers in Madrid to practise with. Something as simple as giving someone directions on the metro in English, or even having an in-depth conversation about local history, can be enough to show that you know more than you think you do, as is the case with many English students in Madrid, and can be enough to give you that much-needed confidence boost and keep you motivated to continue learning and improving your English in Madrid.

TAKE CLASSES AT AN ACADEMY

Although it can sometimes be hard to find the motivation to get started, once you’ve had that first English class in an English academy, you’ll find that your level of motivation will also increase. Here at our language academies in La Elipa and García Noblejas, we often find that our English students are a bit unsure at the beginning but with time and more English classes both their motivation and their confidence increases.

SUBSCRIBE TO A YOUTUBE CHANNEL

With the same benefits of watching films on TV series in English, but in a much shorter length of time, watching YouTube videos in English can be a great way of staying motivated. Most of us in 2019 probably have a YouTube account and watch videos on the platform regularly, so why not give it a try?

PLAN A TRIP

What better way to motivate yourself (or scaring yourself!) into learning more English could there be than knowing than you will soon be in an English-speaking country, surrounded by people who only speak English and not being able to reply on your native language? Having a specific goal like this in mind can be the perfect way to motivate yourself to improve your English quickly.

SET GOALS AND REMINDERS FOR YOURSELF

As previously mentioned, whether it’s the FCE or CAE exam, or an upcoming trip to an English-speaking country, having a specific goal in mind can be an excellent way of maintaining your level of motivation. If you set reminders for yourself, such as leaving post-its around the house or having weekly meet-ups or English classes to prepare for, you’ll be less likely to forget about these your goals and you’ll be surprised by just how quickly you’re able to advance.

If you’d like to know more and are interested in our English classes in Madrid, feel free to contact us or drop by either of our English academies in La Elipa and La Almudena, where any one of our native English teachers will be able to give you more information on our highly economical English classes in Madrid this autumn.

We hope to see you soon!

IMPROVE YOUR ENGLISH WITH MUSIC

Do you already listen to songs in English? Do you ever look up the lyrics? It is important to also look up the lyrics. Sometimes the artist is saying something different than what we originally thought.
Here is an example:
Son Reebok o Nike?
And here is the song (with the lyrics) of the song he actually likes: The Rhythm of the Night It is called, The Rhythm of the night.

Here are some tips for learning English with songs:
-Listen to the radio, go the the club, turn on MTV or VH1, find songs you like.
-Use Shazam or trackID or any other song identification program to remember songs you like.
-Sing out loud to your favorite songs. Songs are more than just lyrics, songs tell a story, they are emotion, passion, excitement, sadness, try to pick up on the emotion and try to capture that feeling while you sing.
-Next check out the lyrics in English azlyrics here is an excellent site with the lyrics to most songs. This step is important to be sure that you are singing the correct lyrics. I am a native speaker and many times I have looked up the lyrics to English songs. This ensures that you are learning the right words.
-If you have any doubts about words or meanings, get your dictionary and attempt to understand or look for the lyrics in Spanish.
-Sing along to the song while looking at the lyrics. You can also go to www.youtube.com and type the name of the song + singer + lyrics (ex: The Rhythm of the Night, Corona, Lyrics) to see the video with lyrics on the screen.
-Feeling brave? Want to have more fun with the song? Practice the song as a Karaoke. Here is a program to convert songs into Karaoke format. Karaoke player
-Keep practicing singing along and revising the lyrics until you have learned it. Once you have learned the words to a song it is something you will not easily forget.

We can guess a lot about a song by the tone of the singer, but please remember to always look up the lyrics!
The Dramatic Song: The Dramatic Song

Do you think you already understand enough English to not need to look up the lyrics? Please check out this site: lyrics training This site allows you to search English songs by level of difficulty and practice your listening skills by filling in the missing words of popular songs. It’s a fun way to enjoy training your listening and writing skills.
Here is another site that has popular songs ranked by level where you must fill in the blanks.

DO YOU THINK IN ENGLISH? OR SPANISH?

Many of our students here at the academy in Madrid still think about a new language by translating through their first. This leads to common mistakes often spotted by our native teachers. Here we have listed the top mistakes for you to learn quickly and sound more native today!

Using COMO – HOW for questions.

How is this?
How spell this?
Using WITH – INSTEAD OF TO

Married TO someone as opposed to married WITH

John has been married with to Caroline for 5 years.

They have five years together.

This is also not correct as we have to specificy what they have together,

They have been together for five years.

TENER V SER – AGE

In English we don´t have our years, but we are them, this often causes confusion for beginners who like to say I have 10 years old instead of I am 10 years old.

James and John have ten years.

If this sentence seems correct to you, you´d be among the hundreds of Spanish speakers who also incorrectly use HAVE instead of TO BE when discussing ages. This is a fairly common mistake as of course in Spanish we use ´tener´.

 

AGREEMENT

I am agree

This sentence should be I agree with no use of am as agree is a verb itself!

WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? INCLUDE THE SUBJECT!

It is very important to refer to the SUBJECT. In Spanish this can be omitted, so even advanced students are tempted to start their sentences with ´is very easy to´, but this leaves us feeling rather baffled; but what is easy? IT of course! IT is easy!

NEW WORD?

baffle
ˈbaf(ə)l/Enviar
verb
past tense: baffled; past participle: baffled
1.
totally bewilder or perplex.
“an unexplained occurrence that baffled everyone”
synonyms: perplex, puzzle, bewilder, mystify, bemuse, confuse, confound, nonplus, disconcert, throw, set someone thinking; More

Learning English through Social Media

There are various advantages to using social media to improve your English. Perhaps the simplest is that you can access the same information you would receive in your native language but instead in English. This way you can still keep up-to-date with the news, current events or your favourite celebrity but learn English at the same time! This is a great way to expand your vocabulary, on both the topics that you talk about regularly and others that may only be in the news a short time. Following specific topics or hashtags on Twitter will help you focus your reading on particular areas.

Another advantage is if you are overwhelmed by reading full newspaper articles in English then social media is a great place to start. You can use social media such as Facebook or Twitter to receive small bits of information daily. This way you can continually improve your English, not just your reading skills, little by little.

A further benefit is being able to learn in your spare time. If you are on the bus or train, standing in a queue or waiting to meet a friend then spending 5 minutes reading Facebook posts or Twitter feeds in English will mean you are using your time productively.

Facebook specifically is excellent for following discussions, and learning the associated vocabulary and relevant grammar structures that go with them. Posts on Facebook and the comments left are not restricted by the number of characters and so people will generally write grammatically correct sentences or spell correctly! On the other hand you need to watch out for grammar errors (native English speakers don’t always have the best English grammar!) or informal language, although this can also be a benefit as you can get used to up-to-date native English in its natural form.

You can also follow certain channels on Youtube, both for entertainment and for learning English.

You can find a variety of specific pages for learning English, whether that is grammar, vocabulary or for Cambridge Exam preparation. And of course you should follow The Language Corner for daily posts on learning English!

https://www.instagram.com/thelanguagecornermadrid/

https://www.facebook.com/thelanguagecornermadrid

Laughter and English Learning

The Language Corner is an English Academy located in Cuidad Lineal, Madrid. Our two language schools are staffed with native English teachers. The teachers have experience in the field of education, but they also have other skills such as: business, theatre, art, dance, maths, science, and more.

Today’s article is about Laughter and Language Learning. Jessica, who is on staff at The Language corner, is a certified Laughter Yoga Instructor and a Laughter Therapist. She has been teaching English in Madrid for the last five years and has found it very common that Spanish students learning English talk about “vergüenza”. Jessica gives Laugher English workshops where she says, “Students are given the opportunity to practice English in a more relaxed and natural manner”.

There are many benefits to learning English with laughter as a tool. Some of these benefits are:

You will find yourself more attentive, more motivated, and more excited to go to class.
The level of interaction between students is higher.
The level of interaction with the teacher is higher.
Laugher is infectious and will have everyone participating.
Your levels of stress and anxiety are much lower while you are laughing.
Classes that include laughter are a lot of fun!

TLC

POEM IN YOUR POCKET DAY

Today is “POEM IN YOUR POCKET” Day!

Poetry is an excellent way to improve your English. Poetry is diverse and allows you to choose from many different topics of interest. There are also endless styles and formats of poetry. Poetry vocabulary varies from simple to complex.
Many poems us repetition, rhyming, and rhythm to help increase your English pronunciation.

Go ahead, choose your favorite poem, in English, and get to reciting!!

The British Council has a great poetry and stories section to practice English, check it out here: Stories and Poems.

If you would like to use poetry in the English learning classroom, our native teachers can help you with that!

Visit or call us
The Language Corner
C/Gandhi, 19 <M> La Almudena <M> Garcia Noblejas
C/Ricardo Ortiz 60 Posterior <M> La Elipa
673 340 106.

TLC

Keep Improving Your English This Summer… Don’t Sleep On It!

Keep Improving Your English This Summer… Don’t Sleep On It!
This summer in-between your travel plans you should make time to keep improving your English. Taking an English audio book to listen to while you’re on the beach or something to read on the plane are great ideas to continue learning.

Don’t Sleep On It Inglés Madrid Verano!

At The Language Corner we don’t close during summer so for Intensive English Summer Courses in Madrid look no further! In addition to some regular classes continuing throughout the summer, we have special one week courses of 2 or 3 hours every day. It’s the perfect way to boost your English!

We have adults’ and children’s classes, from Beginner to Advanced, and Cambridge exam preparation (PET, First Certificate, CAE.) Ask us to find out our timetable.
Come and join our native English teachers in La Elipa to make rapid improvements while the rest of Madrid sleeps!

TLC

Our Favourite Irish Bars In Madrid!

Whether you are looking for a quiet bar to relax or somewhere with a bit more life, you can find many excellent Irish bars in Madrid. Most offer interesting English, Irish and World beers. Most have live music, performances or quiz nights in English, and show the best English football. Often the bar staff are native English speakers so you can also use the opportunity to have a conversation with them and practise your speaking skills!

irish flag

Irish Corner – This is the perfect local bar for us in Pueblo Nuevo, as it is a short distance from both the La Elipa and La Almudena schools. The bar is at the corner of Calle Hermanos García Noblejas and Calle Alcalá right next to Ciudad Lineal metro station. They show all the English Premier League football as well as La Liga games and have regular live music in English.

James Joyce – Further along Calle Alcalá is the James Joyce bar, which is always packed for the big sporting events that are shown on the big screens. In particular we recommend going to watch 6 Nations rugby here which includes the English, French and Italian national rugby teams.

Jarritas Irish Pub – This is unlike the other bars we recommend, in that it is very small! This gives it a fantastic authentic Irish atmosphere, with an authentic English speaking landlord!

Triskel Tavern – A favourite of Brits and Americans this is a city centre bar where you are sure to hear English conversations from the customers. Another reason it is one of our favourite Irish bars in Madrid is their open mic music night on Thursdays, where you can often see The Language Corner teachers having a drink, and in particular one of our English teachers singing and playing guitar!

Dubliners – We recommend Dubliners because of their great selection of live music that they tuck into the corner of their city centre bar. The music is a mixture of Spanish and English from the 60s to the present day. It gets busy at the weekend which makes for a great atmosphere with various nationalities mixing together.

TLC