Skills: listening 1. A standard procedure for administering a listening activity.

57.  Skills: listening 1. A standard procedure for administering a listening activity.

What follows is a standard approach for a TEFL teacher to follow when managing a listening activity in class for any recording, although it is particularly useful with presentational dialogues in course books.

1.      Establish the theme of the listening via a warmer which can provide a link into presenting the subject of the recording. E.g. imagine the recording is a couple discussing where to go out for the evening. The teacher could start with a whispers race using relevant ‘suggestion language’ such as ‘Why don’t we go to the cinema?’ or ‘How about a walk along the promenade?’ After a few such sentences, the teacher could say ‘These are ways of talking about what to do in our free time. Now you are going to listen to a couple discussing where to go out for the evening.’ This is the link.

2.      Then say that before they listen, they are going to write some questions down about the recording for them to answer as they listen. The teacher then dictates questions about the content of the recording to the students. 5 or 6 are usually enough, and at least one should include the target language if it is a presentation recording. Tell the students you will only repeat the sentences twice. This speeds up the activity and makes the students concentrate harder.

3.      The students then read back to the teacher (whole class activity) what they have written and the teacher writes it up on the whiteboard. Students can thus check their writing/spelling. An option is to use peer correction. This is where students swap their answers and correct their partner’s work. Students ask about the meaning of any questions they don’t understand. Point 2 and 3 are listening activities in themselves, and allow practice in accuracy of spelling (an exam requirement).

4.      The teacher then asks the students, based on the questions they have written, to speculate about the content of the listening. This is an exam skill required for Cambridge exams – reading questions and deducing/anticipating probable content and context.

5.      The teacher then tells the students they will hear the recording 3 times. The first time they cannot write, they must just listen and look at the questions. (Get them to sit on their hands!) This allows them to hear the whole recording through to get an overall idea and not allow writing down answers to distract them from the listening.

6.      The second time, students will hear the recording and it will be paused to give them time to write the answers. The pausing is usually necessary because short extracts of the kind used in book presentations won’t give them enough time to get their answers down.

7.      The third time the recording will be played right through and the students can write.

8.      The teacher then asks students to repeat the instructions they have been given, thus checking they have understood the task (How many times are you going to hear the recording?, Can you write the first time? etc.)

9.      The recording is then played the 3 times. Students are then put into pairs or small groups to compare their answers and give reasons. Then there is a whole class answer session with the teacher clearing up any problems.

10.  Finally, it is always good to have the students listen again to the recording while looking at the text. This gives them the chance to compare the written word with pronunciation, stress patterns and rhythm.

Obviously, any of these stages can be shortened or simplified, for example only playing the recording twice, giving fewer questions, or omitting the dictation stage and just supply the questions. At the TEFL Centre we see the advantage of doing the listening in this way is that the listening skill is also accompanied by the other 3 skills and provides a nicely weighted lesson plan.

 

Tags: TEFL course malaga, TEFL training, listening skills, standard procedure
Posted on September 3rd, 2017

 

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