Category Archives: English Learning Article

English Articles

In English, knowing when to use ‘a’ or ‘the’ can be difficult. Fortunately, there are rules to help you, but you need to know what type of noun you are using.


When you have a single, countable English noun, you must always have an article before it. We cannot say “please pass me pen”, we must say “please pass me the pen” or “please pass me a pen” or “please pass me your pen”.

Nouns in English can also be uncountable. Uncountable nouns can be concepts, such as ‘life’, ‘happiness’ and so on, or materials and substances, such as ‘coffee’, or ‘wood’.


Uncountable nouns don’t use ‘a’ or ‘an’. This is because you can’t count them. For example, advice is an uncountable noun. You can’t say “he gave me an advice”, but you can say “he gave me some advice”, or “he gave me a piece of advice”.

Some nouns can be both countable and uncountable. For example, we say “coffee” meaning the product, but we say “a coffee” when asking for one cup of coffee.


You can use ‘the’ to make general things specific. You can use ‘the’ with any type of noun – plural or singular, countable or uncountable.

“Please pass me a pen” – any pen.
“Please pass me the pen” – the one that we can both see.

“Children grow up quickly” – children in general.
The children I know grow up quickly” – not all children, just the ones I know.

“Poetry can be beautiful”- poetry in general.
The poetry of Hopkins is beautiful” – I’m only talking about the poetry Hopkins wrote.


Rivers, mountain ranges, seas, oceans and geographic areas all use ‘the‘.
For example, “The Thames”, “The Alps”, “The Atlantic Ocean”, “The Middle East”.

Unique things have ‘the’.
For example, “the sun”, “the moon”.

Some institutional buildings don’t have an article if you visit them for the reason these buildings exist. But if you go to the building for another reason, you must use ‘the’.

“Her husband is in prison.” (He’s a prisoner.)
“She goes to the prison to see him once a month.”

“My son is in school.” (He’s a student.)
“I’m going to the school to see the head master.”

“She’s in hospital at the moment.” (She’s ill.)
“Her husband goes to the hospital to see her every afternoon.”

Musical instruments use ‘the‘.
“She plays the piano.”

Sports don’t have an article.
“He plays football.”

Illnesses don’t have an article.
“He’s got appendicitis.”
But we say “a cold” and “a headache”.

Jobs use ‘a’.
“I’m a teacher.”

We don’t use ‘a’ if the country is singular. “He lives in England.” But if the country’s name has a “plural” meaning, we use ‘the’. “The People’s Republic of China”, “The Netherlands”, “The United States of America”.

Continents, towns and streets don’t have an article.
“Africa”, “New York”, “Church Street”.

Theatres, cinemas and hotels have ‘the’.
The Odeon”, “The Almeira”, “The Hilton”.

Abbreviations use ‘the’.
the UN”, “the USA”, “the IMF”.

We use ‘the’ before classes of people.
the rich”, “the poor”, “the British”.


How Do English Language Learners Learn to Read?

Robert E. Slavin and Alan Cheung

Research suggests that bilingual programs do not harm and usually improve the English reading performance of English language learners.

English language learners—students who come from homes in which a language other than English is spoken—are one of the fastest-growing student populations in U.S. schools. At the same time, the debate over the best way to help English language learners succeed in school has become increasingly heated and political: Some states have abolished or sharply limited native language instruction, whereas others continue it. Today, the stakes are higher than ever. Because many federal and state policies now mandate that schools demonstrate adequate yearly progress of every student subgroup, schools with large English language learner populations face serious consequences unless these students succeed.

The controversy over optimal education for English language learners has focused on beginning reading instruction in particular. Should schools teach English language learners to read in their native language first and then in English, or should English language learners be taught to read in English from the outset with appropriate supports? Whatever the language of instruction, which instructional strategies are most effective? To answer these questions, we must examine the research on beginning reading instruction for English language learners.

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Learning Strategies or Instructional Strategies

Learning or instructional strategies determine the approach for achieving the learning objectives and are included in the pre-instructional activities, information presentation, learner activities, testing, and follow-through. The strategies are usually tied to the needs and interests of students to enhance learning and are based on many types of learning styles (Ekwensi, Moranski, &Townsend-Sweet, 2006).

Thus the learning objectives point you towards the instructional strategies, while the instructional strategies will point you to the medium that will actually deliver the instruction, such as elearning, self-study, classroom, or OJT. However, do not fall into the trap of using only one medium when designing your course. . . use a blended approach.

Although some people use the terms interchangeably, objectives, strategies, and media, all have separate meanings. For example, your learning objective might be “Pull the correct items for a customer order;” the instructional strategies are a demonstration, have a question and answer period, and then receive hands-on practice by actually performing the job, while the media might be a combination of elearning and OJT.


The Skills and Components of English

If we want to be a master of English, we should learn the skills and the components of English.

English Skills:

  • Listening is a communication technique that requires the listener to understand, interpret, and evaluate what (s)he hears.
  • Reading is a complex cognitive process of decoding symbols for the intention of constructing or deriving meaning (reading comprehension).
  • Speaking is an action conveying information or expressing one’s thoughts and feelings in spoken language.
  • Writing is the activity or skill of making coherent words on paper and composing text.

English Components:

  • Vocabulary is the group of words that a  person or group of people know how to use.
  • Grammar is the whole system and structure of a language or of languages in general, usually taken as consisting of syntax and morphology.
  • Pronunciation is the way how to utter the word or the  way in which a word pronounced.

Learning English

Language is system communication in speech and writing used by human being to express their ideas and feeling. A language is very important to do interaction in daily life. People use language for different purpose. We use the language to get messages to every body else.

People around the world need to speak other language if they want to have an interaction with other people who come from different country which have a different language, culture, and religion. If we know  how to speak other language it will help us to get anything easier. For example like finding a job.

English as an international language is used as communication tools by most of the people in the world. It makes the mastery of English both oral and written is very essential. There are many reasons why some people learn English, one from those is that they realize they will have a better opportunity in their future to get a job with two languages rather than one language.

They are common question when talking about learning English:

  • Why do we need to learn English?

The reasons why we need to learn English nowadays because the world is became smaller. More people use English as a common way to communicate with each other. So now it become unavoidable that company and large businesses will need to employ people who can speak more than their own native language. That is where English comes in and it is now officially considered as an international language.

Learning anything is difficult and English is no exception. However, there are ways to make situation easier. Learning English takes time and patient and it can not be rushed. Try to relax and take it easy. The most important thing that we need at the beginning is a good vocabulary. Without words, we have nothing to work with. We must start with strong foundation or base and slowly build on it, day by day. We have to view English as a part of our body. It must become a part of our daily life. Daily practice is very important. We do not have to worry about any mistake. In fact the more mistakes we make, the more we will learn from them. Do not look English as just another subject. Our attitude to English and the way we view it will decide how well we progress. So just keep practice and be confidence.