Dreaming in English: Has It Happened to You?

Have you ever dreamed you were speaking English? If so, it might have surprised you if you normally dream in your native language. But as you learn English and become more fluent in the language, you may find that you start speaking it in your dreams more often. While the reason for this is unknown, there are a few theories why this might happen.

You’re Having a Lucid Dream

A woman sleeping on a pillow

During a lucid dream, you know you are dreaming and can control the dream. Some students who are trying to learn English use lucid dreaming as a way to remember the language. They may study English vocabulary before bed, then consciously “study” those vocabulary words or use them in conversation during the dream. This may be a great study technique for some, but most people cannot consciously control their dreams.

You’ve Achieved Fluency

Some scientists believe that dreaming in a foreign language means you have achieved fluency. When you are speaking or thinking in English in your dreams, the language has subconsciously made its way into your mind so that you do not have to think so hard about which words and verb tenses to use. It has begun to come naturally to you on your journey to learn English.

A Replay of Random Memories

Other scientists believe that you don’t have to be fluent in a language to dream in it. According to Stephen Dutch, Ph.D., the subconscious is good at storing information you have heard, even if you haven’t understood it. You may have heard an instructor, classmate, or movie character speaking in English, and your brain subconsciously stored that information, only to let it out during your dream.

Because so little is known about dreaming, there’s no way to tell for sure exactly why you might be dreaming in this language. But as you continue your journey to learn English and become more fluent, you are likely to start using the language subconsciously, and it will likely make more appearances in your dreams.

To learn about English language courses offered by ALCC American Language, contact us at 212-736-2373 to schedule an appointment with an advisor.

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