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Reading: An article about the world of English


• read an article about the world of English.
• learn verb and noun collocations.

The World of English

Almost everywhere you go in the world, you’ll see English. It’s on signs, adverts and T-shirts! In the online world, it’s even more obvious. Why? Because it is the one language that most people understand – more than Mandarin or Spanish. which have more native speakers than English.

So, how many people speak English? Right now there are over 360 million native speakers of English in the world. And a similar number of people speak it as a second language. But there are more than a billion people who speak or are learning English and that figure is going up. In countries like Denmark, Singapore or Israel more than 80% of people speak English. So, if you go there, you’ll find it easy to get by!

There are also more words in English than in almost any other language. At the moment, there are over a million words in English and we keep on adding more words. You might know words like selfie, Tweet, app and chillax. All of these words have come into use in the English language in the last few years.

And what about the future? Will English always be the world’s number one language? For the moment, yes, but if the Chinese economy continues to grow, will Mandarin turn into the next number one world language? We’ll have to wait and see!

FACT! Soon there will be more people in China who speaks English as a foreign language than there are native English speakers in the whole world!