Learn English online with English Outside the Box

Learn and Improve English with Instagram

Hello my “out of the box” readers! I hope this day finds you feeling happy and magical! Today’s post is to share with you yet another way I am connecting you with learning opportunities “outside the box”, outside the norm, and outside of ways you ever even dreamed possible!

For most people, Instagram is a way to share your life with the world through pictures and 15-second videos. You can live vicariously through travel bloggers profiles, plan your daily outfits with Insta’s fashion icons, drool over fabulously delicious entrees and meals, and/or get some inspiration for health and exercise. But there are so many more opportunities, which is what I am here to tell you about today! You can expand your vocabulary, practice speaking, improve listening skills, review grammar, and even meet others for language exchange! If you haven’t connected with me yet, I’ll give you a second to do so now…. go ahead… @jenesl760.

Okay, now that you are following my Insta page, you are ready to start learning and taking your English skills to the next level!

First, don’t miss “mini lessons” every Saturday:

Expanding Vocabulary

I post various ways to expand your vocabulary. Sometimes I’ll post a challenge for you to fill in the blank, like this:

Or I’ll link up with my favorite English learner’s dictionary (Merriam-Websters Learner’s Dictionary) and share with you a dictionary post:

or an bitmoji picture or infographic:

While other times I’ll share a piece of my life with you, connecting it to relevant vocabulary. This is perhaps my favorite because it shows you real life language being used naturally and in context:

A final way I help you better your vocabulary is by sharing ways and activities you can do on your own, outside of the classroom (or even Instagram!), like with this “Cranium” game and word web:

Speaking Practice

So you don’t have anyone around you that speaks English, you’re living in a non-English speaking country, and you are tired of the weird looks you get from your roommate when you talk to yourself in the mirror. What’s the solution? Record yourself speaking! Upload a video of yourself speaking, whether it’s something random, or a prompt given by me. When doing this you’ll gain confidence, improve pronunciation, and when you tag me, get feedback on your skills! This is relatively new on my Instagram, and yes it does feel slightly awkward at first, but who cares, you’re becoming a better speaker! Check out a couple of my #englishoftheday video prompts:

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Wow! Can you believe it's the last day of your October Learning Plan? Today's activity is a speaking challenge, are you ready to show off your skills? . Record yourself speaking and upload it on Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube (don't forget to tag me!). This is a challenge because it can be uncomfortable, but it will HELP YOU BUILD CONFIDENCE. So, don't be shy! . Answer the following questions: 1. What did you learn this month? 2. What did you enjoy with this learning plan? 3. What was your biggest challenge? . I know you can do it, and I'm looking forward to your videos! . It's not too late to complete the activities of your October Learning Plan, just visit my learning blog: www.englishoutsidethebox.com/blog for your free lessons! #englishoutsidethebox #speakingchallenge #REALenglish

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Improve Listening Skills

Although Instagram videos are short, they are still 60 seconds of practice that you wouldn’t get if you didn’t participate! If you are able to listen and understand the following videos, you would then be able to receive surprises and other learning opportunities!

Review Grammar

I am not embarrassed to say… I LOVE grammar! In past classes we had a “rap” song we would sing before even lesson, and I’d say it definitely made things more exciting. I try to keep this excitement up with current grammar concepts I teach. As I mentioned before, I show you real life language, with natural context and examples, this way you can better apply it to yourself, use and remember it. Take for example some of these posts:

Question Structures:

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Did you know today is "Ask a Stupid Question Day" ❔❓ So I thought, do my students know the correct question structure? It's the perfect opportunity to teach you and for you to practice, so are you ready? . WH-questions, questions that ask for information. These questions require the words: WHO, WHAT, WHERE, WHEN, HOW, WHY (WHICH, HOW MANY, etc…) To form this question you need: WH word + auxiliary + subject + main verb (+…..{additional information})..? Where do you live? Why are you studying English?  When did you call me?  Who have you met that's famous? etc… *NOTE* If your question is asking for the SUBJECT in the answer (a subject question) it may be a little different: These questions only use WHO and WHAT WH word + verb + (+…..{additional information})..? Who is here? (Jennifer is here!) Who called last night? (Paulo called last night.) Who is crying? (The baby is crying) What happened? (A bad storm happened.) . . . . YES/NO questions receive a simple "yes" or "no" response. To form this question you need: Auxiliary + subject + main verb (+…..{additional information})..? Did you see her? Can I go?  Is he a teacher?  Are they Brazilian?  May I have more water? . Now it's your turn to practice! Ask me a question in the comments below. I'll try to answer as many as I can 😻  Please, please read the structure and double check your question before you post! #learnenglish #REALenglish #englishoutsidethebox

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Prepositions (+ a challenge) at a baseball game:

infographics (To, Two, Too)

grammar (+ more challenges)

…and don’t forget the most current #englishoftheday videos that have been highlighting the time tenses, and #phrasalverbfriday (on this blog, too!) giving you different phrasal verbs and ways to learn them (almost) every Friday!

Meet Others for Language Exchange

If you are interested in connecting with others to practice speaking, then you have come to the right place! There are plenty of other learners, like you, who want to improve their skills and are open to different ways to do so. Talking via Skype, Google HangOuts, WhatsApp, Viber, or any of the other free apps that allow international communication is a wonderful way to improve speaking skills and practice English. If you are one of those who are going to argue, “but Jennifer, I won’t learn with another non-native speaker because of X…Y..Z…” then read this, and become a believer!

If you want to be matched with a speaker based on your particular skill level, interest, and language…then become one of my students! 🙂 I currently am matching my students based on this criteria, and it has definitely been a beneficial experience for them. If you’re not ready to make a commitment to a language course, then connect with others:

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Do you want an English conversation partner to practice speaking and improve your English fluency? Comment below saying that you want a partner! You can leave your Skype or email (if you're comfortable) or come back later to find someone who wants a partner and send them a private message. . Conversation partners are a great way to get speaking practice if you don't live in an English speaking country. I recommend finding someone who speaks a different (native) language than you! . Don't be shy! Comment now and find a partner today! #learnenglish #REALenglish #conversationpartner #englishoutsidethebox This week starts the final week of your October Learning Plan and the focus is all about speaking! Visit www.englishoutsidethebox.com/blog for more details.

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Technology has made learning so convenient, and the Internet can provide endless opportunities for it.. so start maximizing your potential and learn something new today!

I would love to hear what you have learned today, especially if it has come from something I have provided! Share below in the comment section, on Instagram, or another social media platform.

Sharing is Caring ♥ Please share with another Instagram lover, and help them reach a new level of success.

Happy Studying! ♥

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  1. […] INSTAGRAM! You know I love Instagram for learning, and if you don’t make sure you read this. To practice these phrasal verbs you can post  A)  a picture or video of you working out […]

  2. English Expressions on June 22, 2015 at 9:14 am

    This is a really great idea! I’ve been thinking about setting up an Instagram account for this purpose as well… Do you find that it works well with English learners?

    • Jennifer on June 22, 2015 at 9:15 am

      Yeah! And not only English learners, there are tons of languages! I’d say.. Set one up! 🙂

    • Jennifer on July 11, 2015 at 3:05 pm

      Did you get one set up? 🙂

      • English Expressions on July 11, 2015 at 3:20 pm

        I did!! 🙂 I’d love it if you followed me, @myenglishexpressions 🙂

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