Learning English Grammar Easily: 8 Simple yet Effective Tips
Who loves learning English grammar? I bet when you ask this question to everyone, you’ll hear nothing but a sound of silence. And it’s because people think learning English grammar is difficult.
For many people, learning English grammar remains a mystery. Some people opine that it’s important while others argued that it’s not really necessary. But undeniably, learning English grammar is essential if you want to become proficient in the English language. You may get bored or perhaps dislike it, but believe me, learning English grammar can be fulfilling. If you want to learn it, all you need to do is to think that you can and put everything in the right place.
Grammar is a pain in the neck if you’re still new to learning a foreign language. What makes learning grammar hard is that each language has its own unique grammar patterns. For instance, Japanese and English have totally opposed the subject-verb agreement in the sentence. The Spanish language, on the other hand, has four noun genders while English only has two.
Although learning to master them can take some time, this should not hinder us from learning more. Because, when we understand the rule, learning a language will no longer be that difficult. Native speakers learn a language without knowing the grammar, after all.
On the other hand, some people may argue that when learning a language, the most important thing is that the speaker-receiver can understand each other, but I believe it’s not wholly so. Why? Simple because good grammar is essential when writing blog posts, social media captions, or when writing a letter. Spoken language may not require grammar correctness, but definitely, it’s definitely important in written communication.
Do you think learning English grammar is easy? My answer is a BIG FAT YES.
Here are 8 simple yet effective tips to consider when learning English grammar.
1. Learn many words.
Learning English grammar can be just a piece of cake if your vocabulary foundation is good. With over 700,000 English words listed in the dictionary, your challenge of learning some of them can be quite tough. So, if you think your vocabulary box is insufficient, you should start consulting Mr. Dictionary now.
Besides, make it a habit to use them in your daily conversation so you can remember it. Try learning English homonyms, homophones, synonyms, and antonyms. Additionally, also consider the importance of prefixes and suffixes since they can also help you learn more words instantly. For example, the word ‘govern’ can become governor, government, governance, governmental, and governmentally. Can you imagine the number of words you can make by using prefixes and suffixes? They’re indeed our best friend when learning English grammar.
2. Be familiar with the parts of speech.
After learning English words, your next task is to use them correctly in the sentence. When learning English grammar, you got to learn the basics – PARTS OF SPEECH. Understanding the different parts of speech will help you in using the words in the sentence.
If you don’t have any idea what the different parts of speech are, we got you the complete list below.
1. Noun –is the name of a person, place, or thing. We classify nouns in two: Proper Nouns and Common Nouns. Proper nouns are specific names such as Marie, QQEnglish, the Philippines, Cebu. Common nouns are general terms like shoes, pencil, school, bus, etc.
2. Pronoun –are words that take the place of a noun in a sentence. The types of pronouns are personal (he, she, it); possessive (mine, hers, his); reflexive (myself, herself, himself, itself); reciprocal (each other); relative (that, which, whom, whose); demonstrative (this, that); interrogative (who, what, when); and indefinite (anyone, anything, nothing, somebody).
3. Adjective –is a word that describes a noun or pronoun, i.e. blue book, hardworking student, big house
4. Article –a special adjective used to define a noun as definite (the) or indefinite (a/an)
5. Verb –is a word that expresses action i.e. eat, drink, jog, am, is, are, etc.
6. Adverb –is a word that describes a verb, adjective, or another adverb, i.e. too small, talk slowly, absolutely delicious,
7. Conjunction –puts together two parts of a sentence, (and, or, but)
8. Preposition –is a word that shows position or direction, used with a noun or pronoun, i.e., I’m setting BESIDE her. The clock is ON the wall.
9. Interjection –words that show emotions, i.e., Wow!, Ouch!, Waaa!
N.B. When learning English grammar, especially with parts of speech, parsing, and identifying each word in the sentence can also be helpful. It sounds a little daunting, but trust me, it helps.
3. Learn the basic sentence patterns.
English sentences follow a specific pattern. You might not notice it at a first glance. But as you move along the process, you’ll notice that words have their particular placement.
Unlike any other languages, sentences in English only express a single thought. This means that one incorrect placement of the word in the sentence can change the whole meaning of the word.
Listed below are some common sentence patterns in the English language.
1. Subject – Linking Verb – Complement (S-LV-C)
2. Subject – Transitive Verb – Direct Object (S-TV-DO)
3. Subject – Transitive Verb -Indirect Object – Direct Object (S-TV-DO)
4. Subject – Transitive Verb – Direct Object – Object Complement (S-TV-DO-OC)
5. Subject – Intransitive Verb (S-IV)
4. Learn the rules about verb forms.
One of the most challenging parts when learning English grammar is mastering the rules of conjugation or verb forms. In English. conjugation means breaking a verb down into its different forms to show person, number, tense, and voice. Clearly, the most common thing we know about learning English verbs in the past, present, and future tense. They’re called conjugations of time in grammar.
Grammatically, conjugating English verbs are tricky, not because there are a lot of them but because they have a specific pattern. As you know, we have these so-called regular verbs and irregular verbs.
Regular verbs are verbs do not undergo substantial changes while changing forms between tenses. Instead, regular verbs form their past participle with ‘d’ or ‘ed’ are regular verbs. For example, dance – danced, walk – walked, smile – smiled.
For the future tense, you add the word “will” or “shall” before the verb, so “will dance” or “shall bake.” All verbs that follow this pattern are regular.
Regular verbs may sound easy, but I’m sure irregular verbs can be quite challenging. There are no set rules, so you need to know how to conjugate each word. The past tense of “sleep,” for example, is not “sleeped”. However, its past form is “slept.” Besides, “eat” is “ate,” while “put” is still “put” and so on. Tricky, right?
When learning English grammar, you will encounter not just verbs but a lot more. But for you to understand all the rules, you need to do the same routine – practice as much as you can. And after you learn the simple tenses, you can start practicing with present perfect, past perfect, and past continuous.
5. Talk to people.
What’s the point of learning English grammar if you won’t practice with real live humans? To learn English grammar fast, we must practice using it. We cannot practice self-correction if we don’t open our mouths and converse with other people. Try using your friends or maybe your family members for you to know the areas which you think you’re bad at.
Consequently, you’ll notice your mistakes the moment you open your mouth and start practicing. Besides, you’ll also be able to learn English grammar as you listen to how other people use the words, even if you do not know the rules. The more you hear the words used correctly, the more you learn.
6. Watch and learn.
Movies and television shows are also other ways you should consider when learning English grammar. They’re not just an avenue where you can learn new words but also grammar, figures of speech, and patterns.
With so many available TV shows and series on the web, you’ll be able to watch and enjoy while learning English grammar.
For example, if you are interested in English, a good movie I can recommend is Mary Poppins. If you think old is gold, try watching the comedy show “I love Lucy.” You’ll not just enjoy learning English grammar but also pronunciation with this old series.
However, you should also be extra careful when learning English grammar using videos. This is because some movies and TV shows use ungrammatical English phrases and slang.
For best movies, try checking some films/series on Netflix and double-check its rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The higher the rating, the better the film/series is.
7. Be open to corrections.
Accepting corrections from other people is necessary when learning English grammar. You might think being corrected is offensive or embarrassing, but it’s totally not. It’s part of the entire process. You can’t guarantee instant perfection when learning English. On the other hand, you got to remember that those people who correct your mistakes are not your enemies. They are the teachers that will help you become better.
If you want to improve and learn quickly, be open to corrections. Ask people to correct their mistakes. Also, make it a habit to compare your original and edited work so you can assess the mistakes you made. Don’t take it personally but constructively.
8. Consider using an app for checking.
Technology doesn’t just help us connect with people from anywhere in the world but it also helps us learn English fast. With modern-day technology, applications like Grammarly, Bilingua, and ProWritingAid made learning English grammar easy. These grammar-checking applications are convenient and easy to use. What you need to do is to select the right application for you and it will take you through all the steps to learn grammar easily. By using these mobile apps, you can get functionalities that will allow you to master grammar through any method you want.
What are other ways you know of to learn English grammar easily?
Learning English grammar is a mind-boggling adventure, yet it can be fun and life-changing. Although it requires dedication and commitment, it doesn’t have to be that hard. If you think learning it is hard, think again. What you need to do to learn it easily is to start doing these 8 tips.
So, what are you waiting for? Get on the English adventure and start learning English grammar now!