5 Netflix shows to watch to practise your English

  • BTS rapper RM revealed that he learned English through a popular US sitcom
  • Hearing native English in a natural setting like a series or movie is an excellent way to learn a language
Dannie Higginbotham |

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You've been stuck inside now for ... two months? 10 years? Who can keep track? We know you're doing your best to keep up with your studies, so we've put together a list of five great TV shows you can watch to practise your English listening skills.

Friends

There’s a reason this series lasted 10 years and became a much-beloved hit. The show follows the adventures of six friends in New York City in the 1990s as they navigate friendships, relationships and grow in their careers. Since the six main characters all have different careers and personalities, you hear a wide variety of words and phrases. Plus, it’s kind of fun to see all the outdated fashion and technology – you’ll LOL when you see how big cell phones were in 1995.

Big Bang Theory

While you’ll probably run into a lot of complicated science lingo, not everyone on the show is a science nerd, so you’ll hear a variety of language when the characters interact with each other. You can also hear how important things like intonation and timing are in humour, and why jokes are more than just the words you use.

Community

This hilarious show about a community college study group was just added to Netflix. It’s another great one for learning about humour – there’s a lot of sarcasm and pop culture references, and the characters are always getting themselves into weird situations, such as campus-wide paintball wars.

Jeopardy

Feeling competitive? You’ll definitely run into a lot of advanced vocabulary on this beloved American game show – where you’re given the answers and need to answer in the form of a question. Watch with your parents and see who knows more about topics from science, to English literature and geography!

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

Another 90s throwback! In this series, we follow Will (played by a young Will Smith) as he moves from the mean streets of West Philadelphia to the fancy Bel-Air, with his rich relatives. Along with Friends, this is another great show for learning slang and how people actually speak to each other in English, rather than the stuffy, more unnatural language you might hear in your classroom listening exercises.