The English language is quickly becoming the language of the world; increasingly, business is being conducted in English and students are learning English in schools regardless of what language is spoken natively. For those lacking the funds to enroll in a high-quality English tutoring or teaching program, watching television can be one of the best options for picking up the language. Here are steps to learn English via TV.
Find your favorite shows. Learning a language can be exhausting and difficult; so try to learn from those shows you find entertaining. Make a list of your favorite TV shows and the times they play. If you have limited TV access, try looking at various websites for video clips and news sources. Some online radio options might also be available. Then, make a "syllabus" for your learning of what shows you will watch at what time of day.
Watch TV. Sit down, do not be distracted and watch the programs in their entirety. Listen to vocabulary. Pay attention to sentence structure. Predict what the person will say in response to a comment. Guess how the show will end based on what you understand from the dialogue. If watching a news show, pay attention to each news story and why certain information is relevant to the story.
Keep a journal. Make sure you always have a journal at your side while watching television. Write down any words you hear that you don't understand or know immediately. If there is time, jot down the context in which the word was used. Keep a running list for every show you watch.
Review unknown words and phrases. After you finish watching a program, go through your list and look up the words you didn't know. Write the definition next to the word. Recall the context in which the word was used, and make sure you understand why the word was used the way it was. Circle words that you are still unsure about.
Tape key programs. Tape your favorite shows, and after you have watched it once and looked up all the words you didn't know, watch the show again. Without looking at your journal, guess the meaning of words you didn't previously know. Check your guess. Feel free to pause and rewind; making the most of the time to learn.
Watch a variety of TV shows. Keep trying to learn more every day. Once you have watched several of your favorites, branch out into cartoons, news programs or even quiz shows. Much can be learned from observing how people speak English in different contexts.
Make sure you are getting exposure to several different television stations with several different English-speaking styles. Watch shows that have been produced recently to get insight into modern language and phrases.