Updated: Jul 21, 2020
It might seem surprising, but did you know that reading in English can actually improve your speaking? So, if you have put reading on the "back burner" because speaking has been your priority, let me help change your perspective.
3 Ways That Reading in English Helps Your Speaking
1. Fiction books are guaranteed to have dialog.
So, pick up a fiction story and start reading. When you get to the parts that contain dialog, read the conversations out loud. In this way, you’ll practice conversational English by learning the idioms and expressions that are commonly used in informal dialog. Plus, the grammar (unless it is really informal writing) will most likely be correct.
2. Books are rich in new vocabulary—vocabulary that is used in context.
That means that even though you might not know the meaning of the word immediately, you can gather its significance from the words around it. This is a perfect way to expose yourself to new vocabulary.
Plus, discovering the meaning is like solving a puzzle. And, once you figure out the answer, you are more likely to remember what the word means. It’s a mentally engaging and fun way to increase your vocabulary.
I've also noticed that some authors tend to use the same vocabulary again and again. Some seem to have favorite words and phrases! So, you might encounter the same verb throughout the book. Seeing the word used multiple times is a great way to reinforce its use and meaning in your mind.
3. Books make great conversation starters.
Long before Oprah Winfrey entered the Book Club scene, book clubs were a popular way to bring people together for companionship and discussion. So, have you considered choosing an English book and asking a few friends to read it, too? At the end of the month, have a small Zoom gathering to discuss what you liked about the book and to exchange your thoughts and opinions.
If you are unsure of where to start your English reading journey, start with a topic that actually interests you. I know this sounds incredibly basic, but some learners assume that reading a book is simply a task to be completed. However, I want nothing more than for you to fall in love with reading in English.