But how many lessons do you need before you start speaking at a good level?
Here are some insights into the answer to that very question.
The Advantages to Private ESOL Lessons
There are numerous ways to learn english online or at classes.
Among them, private tuition is regarded as one of the most efficient methods. With high-quality, individualised teaching from a one to one tutor, you can make good progress in a short space of time.
Let’s take a look at the main advantages to private ESOL courses:
- A Focus on the Student
The private aspect of your tuition means that you work with your tutor on a one to one basis. You have the full, undivided attention of your educator and there are no other pupils to distract either of you.
This guarantees individualised teaching that is adapted to your specific needs as the tutor works with your personal strengths and weaknesses to create learning strategies that work.
- Transform Weaknesses into Strengths
In your one to one sessions, you can work on your weak points for as long as you need to do so. Overcoming your individual difficulties is the best way to make progress.
The tutor will teach at your pace, so you don’t rush or skip any points you find difficult. The tailored approach is ideal for learning English as a foreign language, as you can work towards your personal learning objectives – something that is not always possible in school.
- Stay Motivated by Keeping Your Language Relevant
Your tutor will be able to adapt their teaching methods to your personal learning preferences and interests. For example, is you’re a music fan, your tutor use song lyrics from anglophone songs in your studies.
By using what you love to learn, you will be more motivated and will, therefore, learn more quickly.
- Learning from Your Mistakes
Your tutor is also there to mark your worksheets and explain any corrections. Explanations and comments about your work are usually more important than the correct answers themselves.
Tutors are also in a position to keep track of your progress and drive you to achieve your goals.
- Practice Your Spoken English
Having the help of a one to one English tutor is a fantastic opportunity to work on those tricky British, Australian or American English pronunciation skills to eventually be fluent in your second language. Self-taught linguists often neglect this aspect of learning a language.
Unfortunately, good written proficiency does not guarantee that your English will be up to scratch in day-to-day situations, where you need to use your speaking skills.
Speaking practice is the most important factor in succeeding in your English learning and improving your professional English skills.
The quality of your English lessons is dependent on your choice of tutor.
Choosing the Right ESOL Tutor for You
Your choice of tutor will affect the time you take to reach your goals in speaking English.
The quality of teaching depends on several subjective points which ensure that your supplemental lessons are tailored to your learning needs. This is why a ‘good’ tutor will not necessarily be the ideal tutor for you.
The most important part of your search for an English tutor is that you find a tutor whose methodology suits your needs, goals and learning strategies.
Here is our advice to help you find your ideal tutor:
- Choose according to your needs
Choose an ESOL tutor who has the capability to adapt their teaching to your needs. If, for example, you would like to focus on learning business English, make sure you approach a tutor who will be able to guide you with this subject.
- Why Teaching Methods Matter
Your tutor should be able to adapt their teaching and revision methods to your learning style. Just like their pupils, all tutors are different and will therefore have a varied way of teaching. For this reason, it is of utmost importance that you ask the tutor about their lessons before you proceed with them.
Choosing a tutor who is used to a certain type of student is also crucial. For example, if you’re a parent looking for English lessons for your children, make sure you find a tutor who is used to teaching kids. Learn about taking ESOL courses as an adult as well here.
- Use Your Language Skills
As speaking is the best way to practice using your language, your tutor should speak to you in English throughout your lessons. This way, you will make the best possible progress, even if you find it difficult in the beginning.
- Remember that Tuition is for Your Benefit
Your private tutor is there to listen to you and take your comments on board to provide truly tailored tuition.
You should be able to discuss your strong points, difficulties and worries with your English tutor.
- Look for Well-Rounded Tuition
Your lessons should aim to cover all areas of language that you should be expected to know at a given level of competence.
Tutors should not neglect any key points nor should they leave aside any topics you may find difficult, as this could have a detrimental effect on your overall knowledge of the English language.
You should be working on your speaking, reading comprehension and writing skills, listening, grammar, vocabulary, and conjugation skills at the same time to develop an ability to use English in real-life situations.
- Stay Motivated with Your Learning
Choose a tutor who gives you exercises and worksheets to complete between your sessions.
Learning a language is all about keeping it active, and you should be working your English on a daily basis rather than waiting for your weekly lessons.
You should aim to cover all aspects of language learning in your revision, including spelling, use of idiomatic expressions and common phrases, verb conjugation (including knowing the irregular verbs) and use of tenses.
To learn how to speak English with as few mistakes as possible, why not try online quizzes, where you can practice your knowledge of grammar rules, for example. Get used to using nouns, adjectives and prepositions properly as well as exploring the use of slang English words.
- Improve Your English Accent
A good accent is the cherry on top of knowing a language.
This is why finding a tutor who is a native English speaker is perfect for helping you improve your pronunciation by developing your listening skills, which will make it easier for native English speakers to understand you.
To find your ideal tutor, you can consult tutoring platforms such as Superprof to browse and contact tutors in your local area as well as those who can teach English online.
Superprof’s large choice of tutors means that you may find a gem who can help you blossom with your new linguistic abilities.
The Benefits of Learning English with a Tutor
Even if you have a good teacher, your lessons will not be as effective as they could be if you received them in your own home.
Between lessons, you must:
- Revisit what you have been taught in class with your one to one tutor to help you retain any new information
- Do the homework exercises given to you by your teacher
- Practice your English outside of the classroom
In order for your studies to be as effective as possible, your teacher will advise you on how to work on your English at home.
We advise that you avoid teachers who don’t encourage self-study at home to support your education.
Making the Most of Your Private ESOL Tuition with an English Native
The higher the quality of teaching you receive, the fewer hours you will need to make progress.
When it comes to the question of how many sessions you will need to start speaking English well, the answer is to do with the teaching.
The level of personalisation, as well as the quality and methods of encouragement, play a role in this. In short: the higher the teaching quality, the fewer lessons you will need.
Here are our practical tips that will help you save time and money on your private tutoring:
- The first two points have already been mentioned: find a tutor who suits you and can teach you in your home
- Do your best to practice your spoken English outside of lessons – this can be with your friends or family members
- Look into spending some time in an anglophone country, where you will be made to use your English every day
- Take notes of key points and vocabulary during your lessons so you always have something to refer to when you get stuck or need some help
- Don’t hesitate to ask your tutor questions during your sessions (or even outside of them by email, for example) – they’re there to make things clear for you and make sure you make the best possible progress
- Watch films and TV shows in English to get used to deciphering spoken English. Tip: start by watching English language films with subtitles in your language, then change to English subtitles
- Listen to music in English and try to sing along with the lyrics and understand what they mean
- Read English literature – start with books aimed at younger readers which don’t include complex language
- Read English daily and weekly news in newspapers and magazines
How Much ESOL Lessons Do You Need to Become a Skilled English Speaker?
And finally, how many private lessons should you expect to have before you start speaking English at a good level?
Unfortunately, there is no real answer to this as every learner is different.
It all depends on your starting level.
For people who have never before studied English and are starting from the beginning, more hours of tuition will obviously be needed for them to establish the basic skills.
Your objective also plays a big role in the answer to the question, as it defines your aim of a ‘good’ level of English.
If you’re already an advanced speaker hoping to pass for native English by the end of your course, you will need significantly fewer hours of tuition than a beginner.
To put a figure on the amount of tuition you need to achieve your goals in English would be nothing but unhelpful and would hold no value, as it’s quality that counts – and not quantity.