Start An English-Speaking Supper Club
Being away from the classroom can mean that your ESL skills aren’t getting as much of a workout as they were when you were a study abroad student in the US. Make time to speak English after school ends, and widen your circle of English speaking friends in your own country by starting an English club.
There are English clubs of all types, but an English-speaking supper club is one of the more informal types. Sharing a meal with people who have the same learning goals is a fun way to reinforce the English you know while continuing to learn, and gain confidence in your spoken English.
How To Make Your English-Speaking Supper Club A Reality
Starting an English-speaking supper club is as easy as posting a notice at your local university, or library.
Think about finding a volunteer moderator for your group who’s fluent in English. New teachers, or people who want to become ESL teachers may be interested because the experience will bolster their resume. Post a help wanted ad in your local paper.
Try to keep the size of the group between 6-12 people, and look for a mix of ages, and skill levels. That way members can help one another.
Meet once a week at local cafes, restaurants, or member’s homes. At the first meeting establish a day and time that works for everyone, and talk about what each of you hopes to gain by becoming a member.
Make it a rule to speak English only when you get together. If you have a moderator let them choose a topic of discussion at the first couple meetings. Everyone will be a little shy at first about making mistakes when they speak English. By the third meeting you’ll all be more comfortable with one another, and you can ask the group for topic suggestions. Make sure everyone gets a chance to speak.
Take “semester” breaks. Start anew every 3 or 4 months. Some people will drop out, and others will return. You can invite new people to join, or stay small and intimate. Whichever you decide, have a meeting where you all talk about what really worked the first time around, and what you’d like to change. There are lots of suggestions online for games to play, vocabulary warm ups, conversation worksheets, even homework assignments.
Starting an English-speaking supper club in your own country will help you retain the English language skills you learned as an ESL student in the US. Your English club will be a safe environment for continuing to learn English, and create an opportunity to be surrounded by people who share your passion.