Why not tell your students to listen to the news? It’s a great way to practice authentic listening. They can listen on the radio, on television, or on the internet. Miles Craven presents tips and tricks for using the news in class.
BBC World Service
For news in British English, the BBC World Service is a fantastic resource: www.bbc.co.uk/worldserviceradio
A schedule of BBC World Service radio programmes can be found here: www.bbc.co.uk/worldserviceradio/programmes/schedules#on-now
Tell your students to look out for the video and audio symbols. Explain they might like to download the app, and then they can listen to the programmes as many times as they like.
American and Australian news
Students can also try listening to the news in different accents, for example American English on CNN http://edition.cnn.com or CBS www.cbsnews.com.
Australian news radio, ABC (including live news) can be listened to here: https://www.abc.net.au/radio/newsradio.
Tips for listening to the news
The following tips will help your students make the most out of listening to the news in English:
- It can be a good idea to listen to the news in your own language before you listen in English. Perhaps make some notes of the main stories, including any names of people or places.
- Don’t worry about how much you understand. Listen to or watch the report first a few times ‘just for fun’.
- Stop and review as many times as necessary.
- Write a brief summary (one or two sentences) of each story.
- Set yourself a few questions to answer. Then listen again for the answers.
- Make notes of any new vocabulary you think is useful.
- Why not listen to the news with a friend? You can help each other by talking about what you each understand.
- When you feel confident, try listening to the news in English in different accents
Useful links to other ELT listening resources
- The TESL Journal's ESL: http://iteslj.org/links/ESL/Listening
- Learning Resources at www.literacynet.org/cnnsf
- Randall's Cyber Listening Lab at www.esl-lab.com
- Voice of America at www.manythings.org/voa/scripts
- Pronunciation practice at www.manythings.org/pp
- Songs at www.manythings.org/songs
- More pronunciation at: www.soundsofenglish.org/sounds
- EFL.NET at www.efl.net
- 1-Language.com at www.1-language.com/esllistening/index.htm
Why not share your favourite resources (other than onestopenglish, of course!) in the comments?
Listening skills: Top Tips
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Listening to the news
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