About Inglesk.com

↓ Summary     → En español

Hey, what's up! I'm glad to have you here. My name is Santiago Madrigal, and I welcome you to Inglesk.com. I hope you enjoy your stay... and take off your shoes before coming in please :)

You must be wondering "Ok, so what the heck is this Inglesk thing anyways?" Well, every language in the world is manifested in four skills: Reading, Listening, Writing and Speaking. Inglesk is a web resource where you can learn how to improve, and eventually master, those four skills in the English language...
  • ... in a self-directed way (or, as they say, on your own).
  • ... doing it by your own desire and conviction to do it.
  • ... using technology and all the resources the Internet has to offer to support your learning.
  • ... without having to sign up for English classes.
  • ... without studying grammar rules.
  • ... and most importantly, using content in English that YOU actually love in order to train your skills.

Learning English in a self-directed way


Yup, in a self-directed way. This means that you will be learning the language however YOU want to do it, not how anybody else demands you to do it. As its name indicates, learning in a self-directed way puts you in charge of your own learning process, and thus you have the freedom to decide what methods you want to follow, what activities you want to do, and at what times of the day you will train your English.

What tools and contents will you use to learn English?

How much time will you dedicate to it, and at what times during the day?

What paid and free resources will you use for your training?

If you want, will you hire a tutor to help you out? Or will you do language exchanges for free with people who want to learn your native language? Or both? Or neither?

Will you train your writing and speaking in English as soon as you can? Or maybe some months later? Or after a lot of time, once understanding content in the language is no longer an issue?

And as long as your activities and methods follow the principle of Comprehensible Input... what activities will you do, what activities will you NOT do, what content will you use, and what content will you NOT use for your English learning?

When your learning is self-directed you have the power to decide all of this. You are not limited to what a teachers demands you to do, or by the materials and activities that an unchangeable and mandatory curriculum obliges you to follow. If you learn in a self-directed way you have complete freedom and flexibility to build and tweak your learning routine just as you like it.

To me, this way of learning is a lot better than following a mandatory curriculum where they make you fill workbooks you don't care about, and make you speak and write things in English before you want to start doing it.

On the other side, learning in a self-directed way means that you are completely responsible for your own progress. You can't blame your teacher, or your classmates, or your tutor, or your materials, or your significant other, or the trolls from that one forum you visit, or Obama for not progressing. If you are not progressing, it's your entire responsibility to figure out why, and fix whatever is not working.

Also, whether you are learning in a free and self-directed way, or taking face-to-face English classes (I don't recommend you take classes, though), it's up to you to stay on course and don't abandon your language learning.

When you learn in an autonomous and self-directed way, you will stay on track by your own determination to keep moving forward, not by the fear of suffering negative consequences like receiving bad grades, or losing money, or that your relatives will reject and humiliate you, or stop supporting you (if you still depend on them economically).

If you have the courage to accept the responsibility of your own progress, then I encourage you to take control of your own learning and to eventually master English "on your own", however you want and decide to do it.

Inglesk will help you learn how you can achieve this.


Don't study English because you "have" to. Learn it because you WANT TO.


Mastering English can give you many advantages in life, that's for sure. But to me, those benefits don't justify that you force yourself to learn a language that you really don't like, and that deep down doesn't interest you.

You can try, though. You can try to learn English just for the benefits even if you hate the language. Despite that, I think it's possible to achieve success after some years of training... but the process will be torture and you will hate your damn life every time you have to open an ebook in English.

I don't know about you, but I think that life is too short to spend it trying to learn things that we are definitely not interested in just to fulfill other people's expectations. I don't think it's fair. It's true that we all have to learn skills to help others and be productive members of society... but learn skills that we DON'T like or care about just to fulfill that requirement? No thanks.

If you don't like English, I still recommend you give the language a chance... but if you definitely don't want to learn English, then I think it would be best if you dedicate your time and efforts in mastering a different language, or improving your skills in any other area you are interested in.

If you decide you want to master a different language, Inglesk can help you with that too :D


Whooo, one moment, back up, back up... without studying grammar rules? HUH?


It sounds strange, right? Learning English without studying the grammar rules that describe the language...

At first sight this seems to make no sense. It sounds like trying to learn to swim without water, or trying to learn to skate without a skateboard. Isn't studying grammar absolutely indispensable to learn English? Aren't you supposed to have a clear understanding of the grammar rules of the language to be able to build phrases? Some people will even tell you that the grammar of a language IS the language.

Well... look, on one side... yes, it IS necessary to master the grammar of the English language to understand and use the language correctly. That's a given.

However, the thing is that studying grammar rules is NOT how you internalize the grammatical structures of the English language (or any language) in the part of your brain responsible of processing languages.

You learn the patterns that conform English grammar (just like the vocabulary and pronunciation) through Comprehensible Input. That is, through content in English (words, sentences, paragraphs, example phrases, etc.) that you manage to understand some way or another (through dictionaries and looking up usage examples, for instance).

Through examples and practice is how you will learn correct grammatical patterns in English. In contrast, memorizing grammar rules, which are just descriptions on paper of those patterns, is unnecessary. In fact, trying to memorize and recall those descriptions to try to understand and use the language will hinder your "idiomatic flow" instead of help you.


The process of learning the grammar of a language is pretty similar to learning how to drive a car:

You could have a lot of knowledge about how the pedals, wheel and even engine work in your car. You could also have a vast knowledge of mechanical physics, know the torque you have to apply to your wheel to change the direction of your vehicle at about 30°, and you could also know the exact amount of Newtons you have to apply on your pedal for your car to move 48.7 km/h...

But having all that knowledge about how to drive a car doesn't translate in the human ability of driving a car. To learn to drive a car you have to sit on the driver's seat, grab the wheel, put your feet on the pedals, turn on your car, and then you start giving "input" to the car:
  • You press the accelerator a bit.
  • Then a bit more.
  • Then you push the brake.
  • Then you try to move the wheel a little bit.
  • You press the accelerator again and you turn the wheel to the other side.
  • Then you try to decelerate, press the clutch and change gears at the same time.
And thus, each time you do something in the car, the car responds in a way you can feel. You can feel and see how fast or slow your car goes, how harsh are you braking and if the car jumps or not depending on how you change gears.

If you play attention to those patterns then bit by bit, with enough practice and repetition, you will learn how to drive.

To learn how to drive you don't need to have descriptive knowledge about the pedals, the wheels and the gear box. You don't even need to know that the pedals are called pedals or that the wheel is called wheel :P

Having descriptive knowledge about a car can be useful for things like repairing the thing and speaking about your car with another person. But to learn how to drive, that knowledge is useless. Even more, trying to remember and apply consciously those details will hinder your driving skills instead of helping you drive better.

This is the same when learning English, or any other language. It doesn't matter how wide your knowledge about relative clauses and infinitive verbs and gerunds and whatever else is, memorizing those grammatical descriptions will not help you understand and use them in the real world. And in fact, if you rely on them, they will hinder your natural flow of the language in and out of you.

In summary: You don't need to know grammar rules to learn and obey the correct grammatical patterns of the English language.

Here at Inglesk I share with you different methods you can follow to really learn English grammar, all without studying grammar rules.


Hmmm... learn English using any content I want? How does that work?


Think about all the content you consume daily in your native language: Websites, articles, news, TV shows, movies, videogames, music, comics, etc. Now tell me, would you like to train your English daily through content like the content you like to consume in your native language... but in English? Wouldn't that be awesome?

To me, the greatest advantage of learning English in a self-directed way is the freedom of being able to train your English skills through content in English that you would devour with pleasure if it was in your native language.

If you find a piece of content that:
  • Contains mostly correct English.
  • Contains lots of dialogues/sentences in English.
  • And has a trustworthy transcript if the content has audio.
Then you can use that piece of content to improve your English understanding.

For instance, do you like cartoons? Would you like to learn English watching cartoons in English? Then search for cartoons in English with their respective transcriptions, and use them to improve your Listening language.

What about videogames. You like videogames? Then play games that have abundant dialogues (written, spoken or both) in English, and use them to learn new words in English.

What musical genres do you like? Are there bands from those genres who sing in English? Then get music from those singers as well as the lyrics of their songs, and learn English through their musical works.

Do you like horror books? Or computer tutorials? Or you like to read about geography? Or reading comics and manga in English? Or watching YouTube videos? Or listening to podcasts with the latest news? Or watching action movies?

It doesn't matter how informal, or crazy, or horrifying, or formal, or cute, or geek, or specialized, or gross, or perverted is the content you like to read or listen to. Whatever kind of content it may be, whatever the topic, as long as you like that content, as long as it's in correct English, and it has a trustworthy transcription (if it's audio or audiovisual content), then you can use it to train and improve your English skills.

Thus, you will not be limited to use only academic textbooks to learn English, which are (in my opinion) usually generic, aseptic and too politically correct. I admit this kind of academic books and other resources like bilingual texts could be valuable for beginner learners, but what's important is that YOU decide to use those resources for your learning or not. Whatever you want.

Now, I'm not saying that learning English using content you like will be as easy as throwing yourself on your bed and consume content in your native language, because that's not how it works. You will have to be disciplined, sit down and give your full attention to the article / video / song / episode / etc. you want to consume, and you will also have to decipher what each word and sentences you don't understand mean by using dictionaries and other tools.

Learning English requires time, dedication, persistence and patience. But if you learn using content in English that you really, really like, the process will be much more motivating and bearable.

In contrast, if you have to use textbooks you are not interested in at all, or native materials in English about topics you don't like... then the "learning" process will be an annoying uphill struggle where you will give up sooner than later.

How do you learn English using content in English you like, exactly? Here at Inglesk you will learn how!


Do you want to know more?


What do you think, sounds interesting? Would you like to learn how to master English this way? Then first, I invite you to subscribe via email to receive new articles and other news from Inglesk in your inbox. Just use the box below to subscribe:

[to be edited]

Then, you can start learning about how to implement this language learning method by reading several articles in the Table of Contents, which are organized by categories. I suggest you start reading the introduction articles, and then you can take a look at other articles, preferably in order.

Once you've read several articles, apply what you've learned. Remember that reading 10, 20, 50, 100 articles about learning English will do nothing for you if you don't apply them.

If you don't want to use a particular tool or do a certain activity that I recommend on this site, or if you don't agree with something I recommend, that's totally fine. I encourage you to research a bit more on other places to complement whatever you read here at Inglesk.

You DON'T have to follow literally everything I recommend here (or anything any other authors recommend), and I suggest you don't do that anyways. At the end of the day, what's important is that you develop a learning method that works well for YOU, and that gives YOU good results.


Some final details you should know about Inglesk


* At the beginning of all my articles you will see a link that says Summary.

This used to say TL;DR, acronym that stands for "Too Long; Didn't Read", and it's generally used in forums and comment threads. Although many trolls use this term derogatorily, others use it to write a summary right after an article or long comment, like this:

(Title)
(3000 words text)
TL;DR: (Two lines)

So, if you don't want to read one of my articles entirely you can read its Summary/TL;DR, which would be a shorter and condensed version of that article. And if you read the entire article, the Summary/TL;DR works as a nice summary (hence the name) of what you just read.

Everybody wins! :D

* All articles at Inglesk have Uncopyright. This means that you can do with them whatever you want (copy them, paste them, share them, transform them, etc.), and you don't have to ask my permission. For more information go here.

* I think it's important to note that Inglesk DOESN'T HAVE any page in Facebook, or Twitter, or Google+, or YouTube (for now... if I open a Youtube channel I will announce it HERE), or in any other social network. People are free to create pages in social networks and forums to share and talk about my content, but if you see a page in a social network that claims to be official and run by me (Santiago), then they are lying.

* If you want to know more about me, the guy behind all this, read this section. If you have any question feel free to contact me via email here.


And that's about it. I thank you very much for your time and attention. I wish you great success in your English learning. I hope to see you around here!

Ohh, and you can put on your shoes now
\(^∇^\)


Summary


My name is Santiago Madrigal. Inglesk is a blog where you will learn how to learn English (and other languages) by following this method. For more information about the method take the time to read some articles (at least the TL;DRs) in the Table of Contents.


Last updated: July 7 of 2015

↓ Tu atención por favor ↓

Dime, ¿estás interesado/a en aprender inglés?

¿Te gustaría poder aprender tan bien el idioma que puedas entender prácticamente todo lo que leas y escuches en inglés?

¿Te gustaría poder comunicarte en inglés sin problema, tanto por escrito como hablando?

Si es así, te invito a visitar Inglesk.com.

Allí aprenderás cómo aprender inglés por tu propia cuenta, usando contenido que de verdad disfrutes, y sin tener que memorizar reglas gramaticales.

¡Haz clic aquí para entrar a Inglesk.com y aprender cómo dominar el inglés de una vez por todas!