Learning English idioms is English fluency!

Hello friends :)

Did you know that English idioms is English Fluency? :O (any comments on that line are more than welcome below in the comments)

English is such a colorful language, and by using idioms, you are able to add more color and better able to express yourself!

Now, who wouldn't love to express themselves well....  

Lets begin this post with an example:

Have you ever heard in a movie someone saying that it is raining cats and dogs?

In that scene, did you see cats and dogs falling out of the sky?  Or maybe did you try to translate this idiom directly to your language and just sat there being completely confused?

I completely understand your frustration, hence why I am writing this post to help you better understand English idioms and reach your English goals!

By translating, it can be a form of a code-breaking game if you do not properly understand idioms, there meaning and how to use them!


why learn english idioms

It is important not only to know the meaning of an idiom, but also to be able to use them correctly and effectively! 

If a non-native English speaker uses an idiom correctly, he will sound very fluent and proficient in the English Language.

BUT!

If you mix up the phrase and use it incorrectly you will sound exactly the opposite!

 

What are idioms?

Let’s begin by looking at what idioms are.  According to the Cambridge dictionary, idioms are:

“a group of words in a fixed order that have a particular meaning that is different from the meanings of each word on its own:

For example: To "have bitten off more than you can chew" is an idiom that means you have tried to do something which is too difficult for you.

The word idiom itself is not originally an English word; it is one of the many words which have come into the English language from the Greek language.  Looking back at the Cambridge dictionary definition of idiom, and rewording this definition into simple English, idioms are 'one of a kind' and show that certain phrases are being used with special meaning, which are completely different from their literal meaning!

Idioms often come from jargon – the technical language used by a group of specialists, whereas other can be more logical

Idioms can be difficult to learn and remember as they have to be learned individually, often they are not grammatically correct, and many native speakers use this in their daily life, expecting their listener to understand the idiom!

 

Why should I learn idioms?

Personally, I believe that learning idioms can help you a lot to understand native English speakers.  If you have been following my live lessons. Then you would know that I quiet often use them!  Learning idioms is a big challenge, a big step and it requires a high understanding of both language and culture.  Everyday, when I speak with my friends, on the streets, watch movies, in public transportation, listen to songs or watch movies I hear English idioms being used!

Still not convinced? 

OK I get it, easier said than done......

Here are some more reasons listed for you why you should be learning English idioms:

It distinguishes a native speaker from a non-native English speaker

You will become a proficient, confident and fluent English Speaker!

If you do not learn English idioms, you can never really become fully proficient in English.  As they are used everywhere!  It is really hard to understand natives what an English Speaker is trying to convey when they are speaking!

English idioms are used everywhere! 

You will find English Speakers using idioms in movies, songs, in every-day communication, in the news, among friends, at university etc..

As an ESL learner, you may hear natives using these strange structures of words, and when you go to translate them they make absolutely no sense!  Once you get into the swing of things, you will become better accustomed to English idioms, and you will better understand, become more proficient and fluent in English!

Spice up your writing-add some color to your writing and don’t make it so dull! 

Whether you are taking an International English test, preparing a presentation for work, writing an essay for University task, or if you are writing to a friend and want to sound cool, idioms are a great way to give you writing some power!

Did you know that idioms give an expression with a figurative meaning that differs from the literal meaning?

Even though idioms can at times clutter your work with unnecessary detail, it can also provide powerful imagery in such a few words.  Are you maybe writing an essay where you only have 200 words to express your thoughts on an idea?  Sometimes, when we are writing, it can be very difficult to express you opinion in such limited word space.

Used correctly, idioms can amplify your message in a way that draws the reader’s attention in and helps to awaken their senses. And only in a few words!

Steps to effectively learn and remember English idioms!

First step: Be observant

When you are listening to songs, watching movies, reading the newspaper or talking to fiends, be observant as much as possible.  Try to look out for the language that the speaker is using, and keep and eye out for any idioms which are being used.

By being observant, you will realize and see what idioms are being used around you, and know which idioms you are able to use in your real life.

Second Step: Keep an idiom diary. 

When you heard these write them down… and then get organized!

Organize your diary in such a way that you have different topics:

For example you could keep a page for:

1. Sports

2. Work

3. Beauty

4. Health etc....

Organized your diary into topics which relate to you!  Not to your friend, partner, teacher or anyone else!  Organize it in a way that relates to you!

Third Step: Write down the definition of the idiom

Never translate idioms to your native language, you will loose the meaning of these idioms.  Write down the definition of this idiom in English, so that you can better understand it

Fourth Step:  Personalize them

There is no point in keeping a diary with only the definitions.  Keep it real and related to you by personalizing them! 

You may be asking how? 

Ask yourself these questions using the idiom in a sentence.  This will help you better understand and remember these idioms!  More importantly use these idioms in the future!

  • Who ..

  • What…

  • When…

  • Where…

  • Why…

  • How…

 

If you would like to learn English idioms, make sure to click here to get your copy of my eBOOK