Thursday, May 07, 2009

Learning to listen

Hello everybody.

Still on the subject of listening: later this week, I'll add another "Six Minute English" listening comprehension. For now, however, I would like to point you to "Learning to Listen". This is in another area of the BBC's "Learning English" web site.

It's intended for people who are considering studying at an English-speaking university. So the emphasis is on English for academic purposes. Everyone, however, will find this useful.

I recommend clicking on Part 1. This is the introduction. You can listen immediately by clicking on the tiny loudspeaker icon. But I suggest that you download the programme as well, and don't forget also to download the script, which is in Adobe Acrobat format.

Here are two comprehension questions for you:

  1. How, according to the programme, can you become a better listener?
  2. How can you prepare for listening to English at an English-speaking university?
Then try Part 2, in which you learn how to listen to lectures.

As always: do leave a comment below this message, or a quick note on the Tag Board, to say how useful you found this programme - or didn't, as the case may be.

Coming up soon: how to use the Concordancer web sites to find out how English words and expressions work. Look down the right hand column of this Blog, where useful sites are listed. Find the "See How English Is Really Used" section. Here are two questions for you:

  1. What's the difference in meaning between "think of" and "think about"?
  2. How many adjectives ending in "- ly" can you find?

That's all for now. More soon!

- Mike


Gianfranco4B said...

Here are my answers to the questions about the first AudioClip:

1. You can become a better listener by giving attention to your preparation. You have not to decode word by word, but you have to give your attention at the global meaning of what you’re listening to.

2. Some tips consist in learning the special used vocabulary in advance or looking at the title of the lecture. This can help you with the language and content you are going to listen to. In this way you can have a better understanding of a lecture or talk.

Gianfranco4B said...

Hi all! I have found really interesting the second audio clip, especially the subject of mental energy. It’s very complicated to maintain a good level of attention for a long time. I realise this when I'm watching a film in English. After about 30 minutes my level of attention goes down enormously. In this period I’m trying to watch one film a week, and I find useful, for this reason, stopping the dvd after about 30 minutes and continue watching the following part another day. See you next Tuesday!

Gianfranco4B said...

I have the answer... maybe! Visiting some sites on the matter, and seeing a few examples, I have found that to think about means To consider the possibility of doing something. For example:
1)The judge said he shuddered to think about the effect of such an experience on the victim.
2)"There are one or two things to think about but Leeds are my favourite English club and I hope I will sign for them" he said.
To think of has the meaning of to remember or imagine someone or something.
1)I was trying to think of why the farming community needed subtitles and I was trying to think of a convincing answer.
2)This one woman was particularly tense, and I couldn't think of anything to say to her.
I found also a site where it's said that when we are talking about people, we can use both indifferently. I realise that this question is very tricky to answer. So, Michael, if you can explain to us better the difference. Thanks!

Gianfranco4B said...

Here are some adjectives terminating with ly:

Only (meaning UNIQUE)
Likely & Unlikely
Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Yearly

Mike said...

Thanks very much for your comments, Gianfranco.

We can certainly talk about the different ways of using "think" next lesson


daniela 4a said...

I have listen to part 1.
1_The best way to improve our listening is trying to understand the content of a conversation; we have to avoid to translate each word we recognise.
2_We have to prepare ourselves to attend a course at English University by getting hold of books, newspapers and texts: we could look at the kinds of structure used and than study the specialist words.

bye bye ;)