English is not your first language? Learn it right now before you want to become a programmer10 min read

This blog, as you can see the title “Learn to Code Together” – which means what I suppose to do is more or less related to programming and tech in general. In this article, I want to talk about the topic, that some of us neglect or think it’s trivial. But it’s not, at all. We are talking about English, the international language that the most popular today (I am not talking about the residents living in a country and speak their language such as China).

So, if you want to become a programmer, and in case, your first language is English, OK! It’s great! Just need to go straight, learn and improve your coding skills. But there are many people out there who do not speak English as the first language. Thus, it’s crucial to equip that thing first! 

In this world at the moment, with the raising of globalization. It’s easy for some dynamic countries to leverage people to learn and enhance English better, together! However, in some cases, the main factor depends on you and how you sustain keeping it. In a few lines of words below, I am going to give you the motivation, methods and much more that help you find the best way to move forward!

Before we start, if any of you are looking for the friendly JavaScript tutorials for beginners, check out this link.


What will happen if you don’t know English?

  • You won’t able to communicate with people who speak English.
  • You will have difficulty at work.
  • You can’t read the docs that you want.
  • You won’t be able to get far in your career.
  • You won’t able to watch programming movies (TV SHOWS) in English (if there are no subtitles).
  • You won’t able to listen to English songs that you love.
  • And so many more…

So how should we learn English effectively? What are the keys to success in learning English? These are all sincere thoughts from me personally to help you find out the ways that work and yield. I hope you can realize my purpose in this article. Here are  10 things you need to improve your English in my opinion.

1. A motivation to learn English

You feel really boring English, you fell English is very difficult to learn, you don’t want to spend a lot of hours learning English, you don’t want to tire every day because of learning English, you think English is for someone else but not for you, you think you can’t able to speak English, etc…There are many reasons why you don’t want to learn English. So what should you do? That is “MOTIVATION”! HOW CAN YOU INCREASE YOUR MOTIVATION FOR ENGLISH? Imagine what would happen if you can use English, everything becomes easier. Imagine in the future you can talk to native speakers, your boss, your counterpart, your friends, etc… just like you talk in your mother’s language.

The very simple methods but they are very effective and important are:

  • Find a friend to learn together.
  • Watch, listen to English movies, songs that you like.
  • When you feel discouraged, remember the motivation when you started.
  • Believe in yourself, your English is good enough to speak.
  • Using English wherever possible.

Imagine being successful in life and work if you are good at English.

2. Have clear goals in learning English

Having things motivated easier, besides that you need to have clear goals in learning English, they may be these, the goals you want to achieve:

  • You can speak English fluently.
  • Talking to native speakers easily.
  • Spending time to learn English daily basis in your free-time.
  • Working in an environment where English is the primary language.
  • Watching movies you love without subtitles.
  • Listening to the songs you like.
  • Reading programming documents in English without directory or Google Translate.
  • Or just pronounce correctly the names of the superheroes you like or a person you respect.

It can only start with very small goals, but when you finished them, I believe you will be able to accomplish the big next goals and English gradually becomes familiar with you and you can master it.

3. Using Podcast

To be good at English, one thing that you can’t ignore is that you need to have the listening skills which will help you in many situations when you have listening skills you will able to understand what others say and how to respond to them appropriately. The question is how can you practice listening skills? There are many ways to improve your English skills, but in this article, I introduce the application called Podcast, it’s really popular and you can download it on Itunes or Appstore. It’s similar to a radio that allows you to listen to English every day, subscribe to channel related to learning English such as Effortless English, America English Pronunciation, English as a second language and possibly programming related channels like SYNTAX, Javascript Jabber, Programming Throwdown, etc…Focusing on it every day can dramatically improve your listening ability and possibly even programming knowledge on Podcast programming channels.

4. Learn English on popular sites

Practice reading and memorizing your vocabulary by following up popular learning English sites such as VOA, BBC, CNN, Washington Post, etc…to update the news every day and help you to learn and read English. In addition, there are lots of lessons and instructions on how to pronounce the sounds in English, how to use words, structures in daily communication, etc… Besides that, every programmer should follow the site called Medium. Medium is a blogging community that has been used by a lot of people over the past few years. You can search for Google on Medium and read a lot of interesting and meaningful posts with a lot of topics. And this is also a place to attract many famous bloggers in the field of IT, Programming and developers with their stories and help with people. Moreover, you should also join the popular online programming courses such as Codecademy, freeCodeCamp, Udemy, Treehouse, Pluralsight, W3School, etc…So you will learn the knowledge of programming and also the vocabulary of IT English.

5. Learn English with phrases

In the past, I always learned English in a way that whenever  I didn’t know the meaning of words, I translate it into my first language or look at the dictionary word by word. OK, it seemed possible if you just remember a few words. But actually, I feel it is not effective to do so. You will quickly forget the meaning of the word if you do this way, this method of learning English is not correct. The best way to memorize English words is to do in the way that expert AJ Hoge has advised. It’s about learning phrases in English, which will help you remember longer and more accurately when you put the whole sentence into a specific case and when you need to remember you can visualize the whole sentence instead of fatigue.Trust me, Believe me, this way will be more effective than remembering words one by one.

6. Watching English Movies, Play Video Game

Another approach to learning English is playing video games and listening to music, these two methods can help you relax but it can also be very effective. Play games that require a lot of English, have lots of conversations, that will help you improve vocabulary and know how to use it on a case-by-case basis. Listen to your favorite English songs, then memorize your way, not necessarily exactly one by one, so it’s easier to remember and if you find a good grammar write it down. These are a very easy and accessible way of learning English according to psychologists.

If you want to play the video game to improve your English, I recommend you offline game with a lot of conversations such as Tom Raider, Call of Duty, God of War, Max Payne, etc…

7. Learn in the way that you feel most comfortable and reasonable

A common problem when learning English is that there are too many things to choose from. An online course on this site, an online course on the other sites, maybe this person would advise you to learn from here, someone else would advise you to take a look there. Study this environment to be effective or the environment is justified. You see everything is good and you do not know which one to choose. You feel a headache and confused because I don’t know how to choose. My advice, in this case, is that you should think about how to make the right decision is the best fit for you. Learn a little here, then learn a little more there, this may not be as effective as focusing on your own method and maintaining that learning style comfortably. Finding a way to learn your own way is very necessary, this will probably help you to improve your English quickly.

8. Always wonder why

In nowadays, while watching movies, listening to music you will probably encounter a lot of cases of words, phrases, the structure in English that you may already familiar with. You may have learned they in books or something else. But in many cases, you probably won’t know what the meaning of the word is, why in that sentence to use such a structure, in this case why should use such statements, etc…Every so often you should search on Google to find a solution, or wherever you can, to figure out  how to “why?” This way, by learning it actively you will easily remember it in your head, whenever you see it you can easily recall it. For myself, I think this is a fast way to improve your self-learning English. I hope this will happen to you.

9. Learn English with IELTS preparation books

The IELTS exam that has up to 2 million participants in many countries around the world to prove their English proficiency and to have the opportunity to put on the countries they want and programmers don’t except. IELTS exam consists of 4 parts: Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. It’s not necessary to take the test, you should look for some IELTS books. Why should you do that? As mentioned above that the IELTS exam needs 4 skills, each one is very important. There are a few IELTS books that I would recommend to you such as Focus on Academic Skills for IELTS, IELTS Offical Practice Materials, IELTS Trainer, etc… As I mentioned in section 7, I only suggest you some popular IELTS books, maybe you can find books that fit your personality and persist in training. And if you are looking for a chance to work in an English speaking country, the IELTS preparation books and IELTS exam cannot be missed.

10. Don’t fear mistakes

Obviously English may not be the perfect language, you may make many mistakes when using it and accept that mistakes and failures in learning English can always happen. Maybe you have a bad voice to speak English, you have always confused this word with that word, you are afraid to say others don’t understand. Remember that everyone maybe has the same mistakes and you are not alone. Everyone who wants to succeed can overcome it, so why is someone like you don’t? And there is such a famous saying:

“Courage is resistance of fear, mastery of fear – not absence of fear.”

–Mark Twain

Those mistakes are just a little trouble, you can completely overcome and conquer it. I believe in you, friend!

Here are 10 things I want to share with you on how to learn English as a non-native speaker. There are perhaps just some roughly words but I expect what conveys to you is well understood and I hope it is useful to you. I hope you succeed on your way to learning English and become a good programmer. Is there any feedback? Just drop the replay below. Have a nice day!

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