DEVELOPING LISTENING SKILLS
Brainstorm the following or, preferably, discuss them with a couple of colleagues:
1. Mark each of these statements now and again at the end of the brainstorming
Mark each statement:
* = you agree
X = you disagree
? = you are undecided
|1. Listening is a passive skill.|
|2. Listening is a receptive skill.|
|3. Students should never listen to a tape for more than 2 minutes.|
|4. A tape of natural English confuses students.|
|5. Listening is very important for elementary students.|
2. Look at the following short extract from an authentic tape.
What can you deduce from the text?
A: So, can you please come over here again right now?
B: Well, I have to go to Edinburgh today sir.
A: How about this Thursday?
i) It is not the end nor the beginning of the conversation.
ii) Neither A nor B is in Edinburgh.
iii) It is neither Wednesday nor Thursday.
What does this exercise demonstrate about the skills needed to extract information from a text?
3. Given knowledge of grammar and vocabulary, what are the factors which inhibit listening/understanding in a foreign language ?
1. I - - - -
2. A - - - - - - - - -
3. P - - - - - -
4. U - - - - - - - - - U - - of
S - - - - - and I - - - - - - - - -
S - - - - - of S - - - - -
W - - - - - - - -
E - - - - - - - - - - - of S - - - - -
L - - - - - -
In what ways can the teacher help learners with these problems ?
Exploiting a Tape
4. The following stages of a lesson are in a jumbled order.
Put them into an order which you feel would be more satisfactory.
a) Teacher picks out 10 seconds of tape and asks students to identify the main
b) Students listen to the tape and fill in a grid to record the main points.
c) Students discuss this in pairs.
d) Students speculate about the content of the tape on the basis of the title or a short excerpt.
e) The teacher answers any questions about language in the tape.
f) The teacher teaches one or two key items of vocabulary.
g) The students listen to confirm their predictions.
h) The teacher plays the tape in sections while the students try to answer questions relating to detail.
i) Students read the transcript.
j) Students discuss a topic related to the subject of the tape.
5. List ten different activities you use in your classes to improve listening skills.
Now group them into the following categories:
A: Top down interactional
e.g. Eavesdropping at a bar.
B: Top down transactional
e.g. Experienced air traveller listening to the safety instructions before take off.
C: Bottom up transactional
e.g. Your first driving lesson.
D: Bottom up interactional
e.g. Listening to someone telling a bad joke and trying to identify where to laugh.