If you’re an ESL student and you’re looking for a way to improve your writing skills, let me thank you! This is an area students tend to neglect because they don’t necessarily need it in daily life apart from the basics, unless they are thinking about University or an exam. But if you find you’re sending emails, using social media or WhatsApp, then there’s always room for improvement! Maybe some students don’t feel confident, or their work gets a lot of corrections, but you have to crawl before you walk. If you’d like to be the next Shakespeare or Lewis Carrol, we’ll do our best. But before that, let’s look at some ways you can improve your writing skills in English.
I know it sounds insane. Step 1 for improving your writing: reading. But it does work. Reading, subconsciously at least, improves your writing because it gives you a blueprint to reproduce what you read, structure as well as vocabulary. I’ll prove it; how did you learn nearly everything? You copied something or someone! That is exactly how children learn. So, what that means is the more you read, the better your writing will become. There are lots of things that you could read. Next time you take a bath, get on a train, or have an hour to spare, pull out that magazine, book or article and get reading.
Keep a diary
Why not start writing a diary? In fact, with a diary there are two ways you can do this: 1. Keeping a class or language diary. Write about what you did in class with a few examples of the grammar, vocabulary you learnt, or simply what you found easy or difficult. 2. Keeping a real-life diary. This is where you write a little in it at the end of each day about life, work, the dog, family, friends, your day etc. Then your teacher can read your entries at the end of every week and give you guidance on how to improve the language you use. This allows you to be creative or take risks with your writing, try something new or keep it simple, but overall, it means you keep up the practice.
Write random things
Think about what will surprise your teacher. You could write them a recipe, or a book review. You could tell them about a trip you took somewhere or write them an itinerary for a trip to your city. You could describe another student to the teacher. See if they can guess who it is or you could even write them a review of their own class! Be brave, think outside the box, but most importantly, be consistent. Keep your teacher on their toes by not letting them know what’s coming next. The benefit is that it helps you write different things. Your teacher is there to help you so if you would like them to review something you’ve written, they’ll be happy to do it.
Write & improve
If coming up with lots of ideas of what to write is hard or you’re feeling lazy (don’t worry we don’t judge), but you really want to improve your writing in English then why not consider using write & improve. You can practise writing exercises online by choosing the tasks you want to do. It also gives you sentence and word feedback and gives you an idea of the CEFR score. This is a great way to improve your writing because you can join the class your teacher sets up . You can also have your own independent profile and best of all, you can get it for free!
Write to people
If you prefer to write to people, then why not try writing letters to other students? Get to know them and then write letters to them about the things they like or things that happened that week. You can even pick a new pen pal every week if you prefer. You don’t even have to write it to another student. It could be to a friend who speaks English or a colleague instead. You might even be able to share the letter with the class and get it corrected by the teacher. This idea helps you make friends as well as helping each other improve your English writing skills. As old fashioned as it is these days, who doesn’t love receiving letters!
These are just some ways you can improve your writing skills in English. but there are many more. ‘Practice makes perfect’ we say in English and it’s very true. The more you do something the better you become at it. Here at UKCE we try and help you in every way possible. At the moment our workshops are also giving you tips on Academic and essay writing skills. So, no matter if you start off small, take that first step in improving your writing today!