Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

how to continue English conversations

Have you ever wondered how to keep the conversation going?

Sometimes when you’re talking with a native speaker in English you might manage to get the conversation started but then how do you keep it going so that you can go deeper?

Today’s episode was inspired by an observation that we made during the Urban Immersion Adventure in Boston. 

During this program we matched our students with native speakers to do an activity that we call “speed dating.”

How do you keep the conversation going strong in English beyond just the initial topics?

Today we’re going to talk about how to feel comfortable and make the other person feel comfortable in continuing a conversation.


You Don’t Need To Be Perfect When Speaking English

You can speak English when you’re not perfect.

That’s what the Immersion programs are about, and they reiterate that.

You learn to lose that perception of perfection and to move forward with confidence.

If you can be that person in English then you can be that person in everything in your life.


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Practice Makes Perfect

If you want to learn English and new patterns, then you have to immerse yourself into that culture.

That’s what these adventures are all about and how they help to take English learners to the next level.

The spontaneous conversations that happen are great for learning.

The technical pieces come out which are important, but that’s only one part of it.

You learn to just get engaged into conversations and make them work.


Keeping The Conversation Going

How do you keep the English speaking going?

How can you extend the conversation beyond just the initial topics?

There are three specific ways to keep the conversation going, which means losing the fear and continuing it.

  1. You could attach a question at the end of your answer to something: If somebody asks you a question, answer it and then ask them a question at the end. This invites the person to volunteer their own answer and keep the conversation going. You are tagging onto the same question. You could say something like “and how about you?” or “and you?”. It’s easy but effective in getting the other person to talk, and to keep the conversation going. There are two people in this conversation. You are inviting the other person to make a connection with you.
  2. Offer up something personal about yourself: It sends a signal to the other person that they can do the same. You can explain some personal detail that relates to the conversation. It makes you open and approachable, and it gives people something to grab onto. It makes you human in their eyes and shows them that you are somebody that they can talk to. You have to add something personal to the conversation so that they reciprocate. You may have to be a bit vulnerable, but it can help to offer a little something more than what they are asking for.
  3. Just ask “why”: You want to get to the motivation or the inspiration, the reason behind why they just said what they said. You are asking them to elaborate and to continue on with their thoughts. This allows them to connect with you deeper because you are trying to get to know them on a personal level. As they are sharing more personal details, it gives you something to grab onto in conversation. This helps to make a great connection and solidify the friendship. It’s a great strategy to use in conversation.

The burden isn’t all on you, so these strategies help you to let the other person talk and make the connection with you too.



If you want to keep the conversation going in English, then it’s all about making the connection with the other person.

Offering personal details and asking them to do the same will help both of you to keep the conversation going.

Remember it’s not just you that has to carry the conversation, so put it out there and let the other person have something to grab onto as well.

This is how you create a good two way conversation that results in a connection!


If you have any questions, please leave them below in the comments section.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can. 

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