The following is one of a series of guest posts by Mike Shelby. Mike is a former ESL teacher who has been quietly (i.e., without his own blog) disseminating his thoughts on language learning around the internet for quite some time.
My suggestions below are suitable for practicing any language and are given of course in addition to indispensable communication practice with native English speakers.
There are quite a lot of ready-made conversational English dialogues on a multitude of topics with authentic natural wording with useful content (and vocabulary) at all levels of difficulty from basic to advanced levels. It's hard and time consuming for learners to create such dialogues on their own, as this would require a lot of imagination about potential content of conversations in various situations and issues of discussions.
Therefore it is a good idea for learners to select ready-made dialogues with the most practical helpful content at all levels of difficulty and with the best wording in terms of vocabulary. So learners can select a number of ready-made dialogues at their own discretion on each real life topic. On the basis of those ready-made dialogues, learners can create their own dialogues taking into account their potential needs, preferences, circumstances, and personal situation.
After listening to and reading dialogues, learners can write key words and phrases, or main ideas as a plan, or questions on each dialogue that require long answers to make easier for them to imitate (reproduce, act out/role play, etc.) each dialogue to practice speaking in English.
When practicing speaking using ready-made dialogues on one’s own, it is a good idea to record one’s speech on audio and to compare it with the original text or audio recording.
You can find English dialogues in English conversation books, on websites with thematic English conversations, and in audio/video recordings.