Sometimes, we focus too much on English speaking skills. We forget that listening is also part of communication. Here's how you can improve your listening skills in English!
When learning a new language, we are often told to watch movies in that language, with or without subtitles. Other things we can listen to are podcasts, music, and the news.
This is helpful, because we absorb the language when we are exposed to it. However, this is all passive listening.
To improve your listening skills in English, you need active listening. Basically, active listening involves listening to the language and then taking action based on what you hear.
Here are some active listening activities:
1. Audio and video quizzes - These are audio recordings or videos followed by questions about them.
The free language-learning app Duolingo, for example, asks you to listen to a short recording and answer questions based on it.
Another free website that has audio and video lessons is English Listening Lesson Library Online.
2. Dictation exercises - Dictation exercises ask you to write down what you hear. Sometimes, you need to write down only the missing words.
Duolingo also has short dictation exercises. There are many other free websites that use dictation to teach English learners how to listen better, like Breaking News English.
You can also create your own dictation exercises. Look for a short audio clip or video that has a transcript. Without looking at the transcript, write down what you hear. Use the transcript to check if you hear everything correctly.
3. Speaking with an English speaker - This is the best form of active listening. You'll learn more in a one-on-one dialogue with an English speaker.
If you can't find someone who speaks English to practice with, the best thing to do is to sign up for individual English lessons online. This way, you can have an active conversation with an online English teacher.
Give it a try! Schedule a free lesson with us at Learntalk.