how to speak english

10 Great British TV Shows to Learn English

Why All English Students Should Be Watching TV Shows To Learn English


Because television shows are written for native speakers they are full of wonderfully natural vocabulary and colloquial phrases. This isn't the vocabulary you will find in your course book, this is REAL English. The kind of English used in every day conversations in workplaces, universities, bars across Britain. As a result you can widen your vocabulary knowledge by translating any new words or phrases you hear and keeping them saved in a notebook or Google doc. 


Television programmes are a fascinating insight into a country's culture. You'll get to see interesting locations, new food, the clothes people wear and what topics of conversation they talk about. TV is a wonderful window into a new culture and language helps us to get a sense of what it means to be a part of it. 


Naturally a huge part of watching a television programme in a second language is so that you get listening practice. Commonly you'll be exposed to every day conversations just as you would in real life. Again because the scripts aren't written for English learners you are going to hear lots of natural English with informal vocabulary and idiomatic phrases. I think it's a good idea to use subtitles in English to give yourself support when you listen watch the programme. Once you feel like you understand what is happening in the show you might want to watch it again without subtitles. 


A fantastic part of watching a television programme is that you will be exposed to a wide range of accents. naturally it will depend on the programme you decide to watch but usually you'll get a couple of different accents. In Britain there are so many different accents all with their own unique pronunciation and colloquial language.

Natural English

As I previously mentioned you will be exposed to very natural English vocabulary and idiomatic phrases. Not only that, but in the reality tv programmes you will get natural reactions to events in the show and you will be able to see how native English speakers express emotions of happiness, disappointment, excitement etc. 

Article written by Tom Rees

The Chief Dreamer