As an English learner, training your ears to listen is tremendously helpful to understand ideas and learn new information. Here are some ways to improve your listening skills in English.
Listen to audiobooks and podcasts
Audiobooks and podcasts are excellent resources for improving your listening skills while learning something new. There are so many stories and talk shows you can listen to, so find one that you are interested in! To start, you may want to follow along with a copy of the text. As you listen, pause, repeat and replay words and phrases that are hard to hear. Also, pause at the end of each section and check that you have understood the main idea before moving on.
Repeat and paraphrase
To make sure that you are actively listening and understanding what is being said, it is helpful to repeat and paraphrase what you hear. Repeat is to say exactly what you hear. Paraphrase is to say what you hear in your own words.
Youtube is another great resource as there is a huge range of videos you can watch. Try watching the news, comedy shows, documentaries etc. to become familiar with different tones and registers of the language. In addition to subtitles, Youtube also lets you play the video at different speeds. If you struggle with certain parts of the video, it is a good idea to slow down the video and rewatch.
Listen for keywords
When the sentence is long or is spoken too fast, you can guess at the meaning of the sentence by picking out keywords. For example, you can understand what the question “What is the most effective way to lose weight” is asking when you hear the words “effective” and “lose weight”.
Author: Katy Lia, Cambly Tutor
If you’d like to keep this conversation going with Katy, give her a call on Cambly or make a reservation with her here: https://www.cambly.com/en/student/tutor/Katy%20Lia