It is said quite often that you should practice talking in English or you will not learn. However, this has a “very bad” effect if you do not have sufficient input of English.
If you do not have sufficient input, the sentences you form will be wrong. If these sentences formed are wrong, and no one corrects you, you will start to think that what you have said is correct. Because of this, your mind will be filled with wrong English sentences. Everything you say, all the sentences you form will be incorrect.
So, if you want to practice talking in English, you “must” make sure that the people around you will be in a position to correct you as soon as you make the mistake. If you want to practice speaking in English, you have to speak English correctly. If you speak incorrectly you “must know” that you have spoken incorrectly.
Unfortunately, most English learners do not have native English speakers around them who will always correct them when they go wrong. In this case, it is wise to first get enough input of the language before you “utter even the first word.”
What is input?
Input is basically any correct English that you may hear or read. If you listen to an English radio station, that is input. If you read a book, then that is input. If you hear to fluent English speakers talking then that is input. If a fluent English speaker is talking to you in English then that is input. Reading this article is input!
Why is input necessary?
All languages are learnt mainly by input. It is the fastest and the best way of learning a language!
When you were a baby you naturally learnt your mother tongue because of all the input of the language from you parents and surroundings. The human brain learns by imitation. When you hear a sentence it gets stored in your brain. When you want to say the same thing or some thing that is similar, you imitate the sentence that is stored in your brain.
Consider the sentence: Ram runs much faster than Sham.
Assume that this sentence is given as input. Later when you want to say a similar thing, your brain pulls this sentence out of your memory and comes up with:
Hari runs much faster than Sham.
Sameer runs much slower than Ajit. etc.
Basically, learning is done by imitation! Input is what is fed into the brain so that there is something available for imitation. The more the input, more sentences are available for the brain to imitate.
So the fastest way of learning how to speak the language fluently would be to get as much as possible input of the language. The more input of the language you get the more correct sentences you will be able to form when you try to speak the language.
You must try to get “as much as possible” input of correct English. The more input you get the more sentences you will be able to form correctly. The more sentences you can form correctly the more your confidence of speaking English will increase and the more you will learn!