Learner tip – Keeping a diary

A great way to improve your English is to keep a diary. At the end of each day, write down 4 things you did that day. Only 4 short sentences – that’s easy, isn’t it? You don’t need much time. You can even do it on your mobile phone on the bus whilst you’re on your way home! Mine would look something like this:


Pretty simple, isn’t it? So, what are the advantages? Well there are lots of great reasons to try this!

  • It will help your speaking because most of us are visual learners meaning we remember better when we see it written down
  • You might have to look in a dictionary to find some new phrases to describe what you did that day so you will extend your vocabulary set (e.g. nursery, a bit of telly) or you can try to include vocabulary you have learnt recently to practise it
  • Personalised examples stay in your head better because you connect it to the memory of that day (e.g. my cousin has just had a baby)
  • Over time you will repeat some sentences (e.g. I went to work) and repetition is important to make English stick in your head!
  • You can add extra information to remind yourself of rules or new vocabulary (see the ‘remember’ section on the right hand side of my page)
  • The longer you keep your diary, the easier it will get and that will give you more confidence
  • You can adjust your diary to your level – beginners can make short simple sentences, advanced learners can challenge themselves with complicated structures
  • You will be constantly practising your past tenses
  • Most importantly, the next time somebody asks you what you did last night/yesterday/at the weekend, you will be able to answer easily and an English conversation begins!

cropped-speech-bubble.png What do you think? Why don’t you try it for a few weeks and see if it helps. Remember it’s just 4 short sentences. Let me know how it goes 🙂

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Nicki is a Cambridge qualified, experienced English teacher for foreign learners. She loves helping English learners to learn real English and communicate with confidence!

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