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English as a second language

English as a second language

When living in the UK it is important to learn to speak English as soon as you can.  Although Schools will accept children who don’t speak English, it is best if they learn as quickly as possible, to enable them to keep up with the rest of the children in the class. 

Here are a few simple tips to help improve your English:-

  1. Read as much as you can, in English.  Try to buy English language books, rather than those in your first language.
  2. Try to use English at home with your family and introduce new vocabulary.
  3. Go to places where you can listen to people speaking English.
  4. Ask lots of questions.
  5. Start with a few words and practice until each word is remembered, then move on to more words. 

There are many places in York that offer English language courses to children and adults:-

York Learning – all levels of English

York College – English for speakers of other languages (ESOL)

York St John University – free to all students over 18


Your local library is a good source of helping to develop language skills and identifying words in English. Younger children’s picture books are a useful tool to assist with recognising common words in the English language. There are also reading books aimed at different reading abilities which can help. Visit the Explore Libraries website for information on where you can find your local library.