What’s up guys and welcome to the second QNA video. In today’s video, we have some really interesting questions such as ‘How do I improve my accent in English’ and ‘What’s the difference between “I have got” and “I have”?’
Remember, if you have a question, comment it down below and we will try to answer it in one of the next QNA videos. Okay let’s not waste any more time. Let’s look at the first question for today.
Question number one comes from Farah and she says, ‘How can I improve my accent, please?’
Improving your accent in English is not difficult. It just takes time and practice.
The first thing you need to do is forget your own accent and forget the sounds of your language when speaking English. When you’re speaking English, you want to listen to native speakers and copy exactly what you hear. Don’t try and use your accent. Don’t try and use the sounds of your language.
Just listen and try and copy exactly what you hear. You want to try to sound exactly the same as the native speaker you are listening to.
After you’ve done this, you need to learn the sounds of English. You can use our pronunciation course where you will learn how to pronounce every sound of English. Now the most important thing with learning English sounds is to try to copy exactly what you hear.
This means forget your own accent and just try and sound exactly like the native speaker you are listening to. This means think about your mouth position, your tongue position. Think about whether the sound is voiced or unvoiced.
But if you use your language’s sounds when speaking English, this may cause you to have an accent which is difficult to understand.
For example, a lot of Thai students pronounce this word as ยู ยู This is because they’re using the sounds from their language and the accent from their language. If they listened to a native speaker say this word and they copied exactly what they heard, and used sounds from English, they would say ‘you’. You.
So practise doing this for many weeks, many months and your accent will get better and better and better.
Question number two comes from Inak and he says, ‘How I get British accent? Is it even possible for a foreigner?’
Yes I think it’s very possible for you to get a British accent. You have a mouth. You have teeth. You have a tongue. So why can’t you make the same sounds as another human being? You can!
To get a British accent, you need to start listening to native English speakers who have a British accent. Listen to them at every opportunity that you can. Listen listen listen and copy what you hear. Forget your own accent and just try and copy exactly what you hear. Try to sound exactly the same as the British person you are listening to.
So for example, I am from Australia and I have heard many native English speakers with a British accent pronounce this word as ‘water’. Water. So if you want a British accent, just listen to what you hear and copy. Water. Water. You can do it. It just takes time and practice.
Do this for many weeks and many months and you will see that your accent changes to more of a British accent. And if you do this long enough, you won’t even have to think about it and you will be able to speak English with a British accent.
Question number three comes from Radwan and he says, ‘Can you explain a little more about the present and past perfect tense, please?’
Before we talk about these two tenses, let’s first talk about what perfect tenses are. Perfect tenses are normally used to show that one action has an effect on another time or another action. The exact time of the action is normally not important.
For example, if I say ‘I have eaten already’, a present perfect sentence, you will see the meaning of this sentence in the timeline at the bottom of the page. I ate at some time in the past. Remember, the time is not important and because I ate at some time in the past, it affects the present because now, in the present, I am not hungry.
This description comes from our eBook called ‘English Tenses Understood’ where you will learn about the main uses of every tense in the English language. You find the link to this eBook in the description below.
Okay so what is the main difference between the past perfect tense and the present perfect tense?
The past perfect tense is normally used to show that one action happened in the past and that action affected another action in the past. As you can see in the timeline here, action 1 happened and then after that, it affected action 2 which also happened in the past.
The example here is ‘I had met her before you introduced her to me.’ This means the action of meeting her happened before you introduced her to me, in the past.
Now let’s look at the present perfect tense. One main use of the present perfect tense is to show that an action happened in the past and that this action has an effect on the present.
For example, ‘I have lost my keys.’ This means I lost my keys in the past and the effect is that right now, in the present, I can’t open the door.
Now these are not all of the uses of the past perfect tense and the present perfect tense. If you would like to learn the main uses of these tenses and of all tenses in English, you can check out our eBook ‘English Tenses Understood’. The link is in the description below.
Question number four comes from Anistrimbu. She says, ‘When do we use “have got” or what is the difference between “have” and “have got”?
Well, let’s look at some examples. I have got a phone. I have a phone. Is there any difference between these two sentences? No there is not.
They have exactly the same meaning. Both sentences are present tense sentences but ‘I have got’ is a present perfect tense. They both have the same meaning. They just use different tenses to express the same thing.
So which one should you use? Well it’s up to you. But for me, I normally would say ‘I’ve got a …’ Why? It just comes out more naturally.
Question number five comes from Omid and he says, ‘How can I learn it? Should I begin of grammar?’
We’ve already answered this question in the last QNA video which you can watch right here. But in summary, at English Understood, we believe that you should first learn pronunciation then vocabulary and then grammar.
Why? Because if you can’t make the sounds of English, how can you pronounce words in English? If you don’t know any words in English, how can you make sentences? If you don’t understand grammar in English, how can you understand the meaning of sentences that you see and hear?
So after you learn these three things, then you can move onto more intermediate and advanced English.
Question number six comes from Sue and she says, ‘I love to improve myself in English but I have an issue. Anything I start I can’t finish it. What should I do?’
This is a very common problem for everyone in the world. They start things but they don’t finish them. I think that one of the most important things you can do is have a really strong reason for what you’re doing.
For example, if you’re learning English, maybe your reason for learning English is to get a better job. This is a very strong reason because if you don’t improve your English, you won’t get that job and you won’t improve your career.
Another thing you can do is to put the thing that you want to do into your daily routine. For example, if you’re learning English and maybe you catch the train to work, you can watch a video or read the news in English.
Add things to your day that help you achieve your goal so you don’t have to think about them. Make them a habit. This will help you to learn English without even thinking about it. It will just happen.
Also, with learning English you need to know that it’s not something that has an end date. It’s something that will never finish. Language learning never finishes because there’s always something new to learn.
For example, I am a native English speaker and I still sometimes learn new things in English and about English.
Question number seven comes from Nehakar and she says, ‘Can you explain is negotiating?’
Negotiating is normally used when talking about business and means when two or more people have talks to come to an agreement about something.
So for example, let’s pretend that John wants to sell a car to Mark. John wants to sell the car for $10,000. But Mark, he only wants to pay $9,000. So John and Mark come together and they talk about it. They try to come to an agreement. After they talk about it and they negotiate, they come to an agreement that $9,500 is a fair price.
They came to an agreement that they were both happy with.
Negotiating is a way that people solve their problems and solve their differences. One person wants one thing. Another person wants a different thing. So they come together, they talk about it and they agree on something that they are both happy with.
Like in our example: John got money and Mark got a car.
Okay that is the end of the second QNA. Thank you so much for watching. If you have a question about English that you want answered, please comment down below and we will try to answer it in one of the next QNA videos.
If you’re having problems with English pronunciation, check out our English Pronunciation Course. You can find the link in the description below. This course will teach you how to pronounce every single sound in English like a native speaker.
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And we will see you in the next video.
If you don’t improve your English, you may .. You won’t be able to get that job and you won’t improve …