Podcasts that help you improve english at home
While it may be difficult to study abroad right now, there are many tools that can help supplement international students to learn English from home.
These can include podcasts, online tutors and lessons. At Kaplan, we place students into three main skill levels: elementary, intermediate, and advanced. Take a look at our language levels and if you’re unsure where on the scale you fit, why not take a free English test?
Find below two podcasts for each level and a couple of studying tips from the experts that can help you to study more efficiently at home.
Better@English offer conversational English tips for students of all levels. They focus on listening, speaking, and reading. All learning episodes are free, students can access to the full transcript and vocabulary notes from each lesson.
BBC: The English We Speak
The English We Speak is a program that aims to offer students fun and short learning lessons. Every week, they produce an episode introducing unfamiliar English phrases with great explanations on how to use them.
BBC: 6-Minute English
6-Minute English is a free english learning tool that provides a series of topical discussion. It is perfect for the people that are short on time, or would rather learn in quick bursts throughout the day.
Voice of America
This website provides a variety of programs and introduces life in the USA, focusing on distinctive topics such as art, culture, and lifestyle. It’s the perfect tool to help people learn about American life where they can converse in a range of topics.
This podcast aims to help students develop top-level English communication skills. They invite a non-native speaker each episode, and in each recording there is an expert to give feedback based on the speaker’s performance. This is really great to develop your listening skills and listen out for accents.
Business English Pod
This podcast is a great resource that everyone could use in a business setting. You’ll learn to learn to lead a formal presentation, specialized vocabulary and socializing in the workplace.
How to stay productive
Staying productive while studying at home is challenging, there is a lot of temptation! Social media, tv shows, or just generally lazing about. Distraction and procrastination could get in the way of achieving your language goal. Studying at home also has many advantages, it’s important to create a relaxing and stress-free environment.
Have a morning routine
It’s important not just to roll out of bed, study in pjs or in bed – however attempting it is! Try to keep a morning routine: wake up at a reasonable time, get dressed (in comfy clothes), make your bed, open the curtains and head to the kitchen to make yourself something to eat. This will help prepare you for the day ahead where you can begin feeling productive.
Have a designated study area
It may be hard to live, work, study, and cook all in your own home, whether a house or a flat. Either way it’s good to try to set up an area where you can work or study. It means after a few days your brain will start to associate sitting down to concentrate when you’re in that area and when relaxing on the couch, you can easily switch off.
Try to keep your area mess free, don’t leave tea or coffee mugs to pile up! Clean working area equals a clear mind.
Create a timetable
Creating a timetable can increase the effectiveness and organization of your time. Divide your time between assignments, testing yourself through quizzes and exercises and attempting to learn new rules. This way you’ll be able to improve in some areas and learn new things – it’s a great way to manage your total study session and feel like you’ve accomplished a lot.
Take productive breaks and cook healthy food
Studying at home can go either way - too many distractions and breaks or not enough time away from your screen and a loss of time. Creating a work space will help you to focus and work when you’re sitting at your desk. Ensure you’re talking regular breaks from your desk and spend this time resting your mind or an activity to distract yourself for 15 minutes or so. Enjoy being able to cook up a healthy lunch too. Just ensure as you go about activities, cooking and breaks that you’re cleaning up after yourself so your space is always kept neat and tidy.
Keep going with your studying at home and know that every little bit you do will help in your goal of achieving language learning.