Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"
Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"

Have you ever tried this?

When we tackle a huge problem, we can’t tackle every part of it, all at once.

The same with gigantic skills such as speaking, reading, writing and listening.

In our course, and in my classroom, this is how I approach learning- with simple, clear, step-by-step methods.

Basically, you need to isolate the skills, strengthen them individually, and then bring them together into a coherent whole.

On the IELTS Speaking exam, you are graded on 4 things: Fluency/Coherence, Vocabulary, Grammar and Pronunciation. Reading out loud, from texts written by native speakers for native speakers, actually improves all 4 of these speaking sub-skills!

How IELTS Fluency and Pronunciation Improve

When you read out loud, you are not worried about how to form a sentence in a grammatically correct manner, or which interesting vocabulary to use, or what ideas you should give more details about.

In this very simple activity, you are only focused on connecting your words in a fluid way, never saying “uh” or “um”, and adding some emotion (intonation and stress) to your voice.

In order to score highly for Fluency/Coherence, you must sound like it is not difficult for you to get the words out. If you hesitate, pause, use fillers, say “um and “uh” a lot, it does not sound fluent.

Also, to score highly for Pronunciation, you must sound interested  in what you are saying, putting emotion into your voice. If you do not use intonation and stress, and if there is no rhythm to your words, you cannot get a high score here.

Other Areas Will Also Improve

Of course, it is a no-brainer that reading high-level resources will improve your vocabulary.

Did you know that it also improves your grammar? The idea here is that the more often you see words and structures used correctly, the better you’ll remember how to produce them yourself.

Your reading comprehension will, obviously, gain from this activity as well. The more reading you do, the better.

I still remember something a professor told me once: “The best readers make good writers.” Again, the more you see and experience high-level ideas and expression, the more likely it is that you will be able to express yourself in these ways as well.

How To Read Out Loud

Simple! Free! Short and sweet!

  1. Choose a native speaker resource, such as a novel, or the New York Times.
  2. Read out loud, every night, for 5 to 10 minutes.

That’s it!

I’ve given this activity to students before, and I promise you, it works!

Do you have any questions about today’s advice?

Leave us a comment below!


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