Updated: Mar 6, 2020
This is a problem for English learners all over the world. However, if you want to learn to speak English well, you must learn and practice with a fluent, native English speaker. You will not learn to use the language from textbooks full of grammar rules. Lots of my native English-speaking friends don't know many of the grammar rules.
You may feel pretty good about your reading and listening skills but confident, fluent speech only comes with real, live conversation.
You can't learn how to become an author from someone who has never had anything published. Don't take sky diving lessons from someone who has never actually jumped. In a similar way you'll never become fluent in English unless you have lots of exposure to real, native English.
Where to find native English speakers
So, here are three ways to find native (or native-like) English speakers to learn from.
1.) Go to an English-speaking country.
This is the best option. When you are immersed in a language your skills grow amazingly fast. Through work-study programs and exchanges you can live with an English-speaking family, make friends with English speakers and have many opportunities to hear and use authentic English. There are such programs in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and Australia. It is an expensive option but one that will bring you very quick progress.
2.) Get to know English speakers right where you live.
Search social media for an English language meetup group near you. There may be other groups for Americans, Canadians, Australians right in your city. See if you can join a group. Talking often
with native speakers is one of the most important steps in acquiring the language, and it can rapidly increase your rate of learning.
3.) Find a professional, native English tutor - online or in-person
If traveling to another country is not in your budget, or you find you aren't getting enough time with English speakers in a local group, then this third option is perfect for you. If you prefer to avoid the travel time, then online lessons are ideal. This also allows for scheduling flexibility for busy people. Look for a friendly tutor with lots of teaching experience and a commitment to your growth in the language. That would be someone like, well, ME!
Please consider contacting me for some fun and relaxed English learning. Bring your cup of coffee. I hope to hear from you soon!