A self-study course for Learning English Language

Course instructor: Rohit Dhankar

This course is constructed on the basis of some experiences of children and youth learning English. Based completely on common sense; no language learning theories are consciously used.

If you do not understand these instructions, take help from a friend but understand this note thoroughly.

Admission criteria

  1. Anyone who wants to try.

Course material

Reading material

  1. Aesop’s Fables: First 30 fables. [1 week] Reading 1_Aesop FABLES_First 30
  2. Panchatantra: Complete as given here. [5 weeks] Reading 2_The-great-panchatantra-tales_Complete
  3. Sherlock Holms: all that is given here. [3 weeks] Reading 3_Sherlock Holmes_any 3 stories
  4. Siddhartha: Complete. [6 weeks] Reading 4_Siddhartha_Complete
  5. Ramayana by Aubrey Menen: Complete [9 weeks] Reading 5_The Ramayana as told_Aubrey Menen

Resource Material

  1. Wordweb dictionary, download from here: http://wordweb.info/free/
  2. Watch Sherlock Holms every day, one episode. Download from here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZaDfTP7zohQ&list=PLzovi87vDfzJGGoYv7u4FDQpoYduhoMf_

How to study:

  1. Read at the least five pages every day, in the order of listed readings, order of readings is very important, don’t violate it. Use WordWeb dictionary only when you are not able to make meaning of the sentence; don’t bother about single words.
  2. Watch one episode of Sherlock Holms every day. Don’t worry if you don’t understand in the beginning; just keep at it, don’t give up. When finished start again from the beginning.
  3. In the last month of the course Read-aloud the whole of Reading 2 listed above.
  4. Find 2-3 friends with whom you can talk about this course and your experiences in it. Talk to them about it as often as you can, not necessarily in English, talk in the language you are most comfortable with.
  5. Send weekly report to me in the following format (in English):
    1. Name: ……. Date Registered: …….. Highest Educational Qualification: ……..
    2. This is Week number: ……. Since you begin the course.
    3. Week: Beginning date: ….. End date: …….
    4. Number of days you worked on the course in this week: …..
    5. Reading name: …….
    6. Minimum Number of pages you read in a day: ….
    7. Maximum Number of the pages you read in a day: …..
    8. Total pages you read in the week: …..
    9. Total episodes of Sherlock Holms you watched in the the week: ….
    10. Difficulties if any:
      1. In reading: …..
      2. In watching: ….
    11. How many times did you discuss your experience during the week? ………..
  6. Send a 1500 word report at the end of 5th month to me. In this report write whatever you want and in whatever format you want.


9 Responses to A self-study course for Learning English Language

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Rohitji

    What a delightful idea!

    Would love to hear the progress of this one.

    I hope you are planning to document the progress.




  2. Anonymous says:

    if there are learners and they follow the routine documentation is automatic. You are welcome to join as co-teacher, that will give you opportunity for analysis, and for free!!


  3. Rama says:

    Such a beautiful and attractive process Rohitji..

    I feel attracted to try with another language – Urdu..
    Only I dont know how to read the script.
    The initial dedicated months spent on the Zindagi channel did leave a flavourful!
    Will try.

    Will be sharing forward your invite with many eager friends.

    Thank you
    Rama ~


  4. Anonymous says:

    This seems more like a course in reading English (except for the one component of watching Sherlock Holmes). I was also wondering if reading Sherlock Holmes would be such a good idea for children or beginning learners of English. The writing is idiomatically and syntactically quite complex. Herman Hesse’s ‘Siddhartha’ might have a glossary, but it is also a difficult text to read.


    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks. You are right. I should have mentioned that decoding (mechanical reading without understanding) proficiency in Roman script is assumed. also had adult learner in mind, people above 19-20. MY mention of children in the first lines perhaps creates misunderstanding. Children who learn by route did not suddenly jump to Holmes and Siddhartha. They used things like Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew. I must change the admission criteria.

      I am aware of difficulty levels of Sherlock Holmes and Siddhartha. Reasons for keeping these readings are: 1. ultimately reading should extend one’s imagination of the world. and is a struggle to make meaning in that extended unfamiliar territory. 2. I hope you have notices that its is a supervised-self-study course–weekly reports. 🙂 I thought that if someone starts I would know when they are facing difficult and shall modify as per need.


      • Anonymous says:

        Thank you for the reply. I do appreciate that you invite students to talk about the texts among themselves. Classrooms hardly encourage that. I was wondering if, even for adults, Ruskin Bond would be a good choice. He writes well and challenges the imagination while keeping the context a little familiar 🙂


  5. Anonymous says:

    suggest something g of similar length as uploaded Holmes. will upload as alternative. More the alternatives available the merrier.


  6. Sanjay K says:



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