5 Conversation Starters to Practice English With New People

ESL students talking on a benchTextbooks can only get you so far. To master a new language, you have to speak it with others. Use these five conversation starters to practice English with new people.

1. The Weather

The weather is a universal topic of conversation. Check the forecast or just look outside, then try these suggestions.

– The weather is beautiful today.

– It’s so hot outside!

– Is it supposed to rain?

2. Current Events

Both global and local events are great to talk about. Watch the news or read the newspaper for conversation ideas, but avoid controversial topics if speaking to a stranger.

– Did you hear about the new highway being built?

– I just read about the wildfire in California.

– Who do you want to win the basketball game tonight?

3. Getting to Know You

When talking to a new person, it’s natural to want to learn more about them. Ask these questions to get to know them a little better, so you’ll have more to talk about.

– Do you have any pets?

– Did you grow up here?

– Have you tried the new cafe downtown?

4. Entertainment

Past blogs have suggested movies and television shows to help you practice English. After you watch, you can use them as conversation starters, too!

– Did you see the new Star Wars movie?

– I hear there’s another season of The Bachelor.

– What tv shows are you watching?

5. Compliments

One of the best ways to strike up a discussion with someone is to compliment something that you like about them. If you’re nervous, check out this compliment guide to make sure your praise is appropriate for the situation.

– That’s a really pretty shirt.

– I like your haircut.

– Where did you buy your shoes?

Use these conversation ideas and others like them to become more comfortable practicing English with people you meet. Just be confident, and you’ll be surprised at how many people are willing to chat!

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