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ESOL Online. Every child literate - a shared responsibility.
Ministry of Education.

Listening strategies

Strategies to develop listening skills

Students spend more time listening than doing anything else at school yet often we don't spend much time teaching students how to be good listeners. Listening with understanding is vital because it provides input for the learner. If learners are conscious of the processes underlying what makes a good listener then learning will be more effective. Key strategies that can be taught in the listening classroom include selective listening, listening for different purposes, predicting, visualising, and inferencing. These strategies should not be separated from the content teaching but woven into the ongoing fabric of the lesson. 

Some possible Teacher Inquiry questions:

  • To what degree does what the students draw, reveal their depth of topic knowledge as opposed to their ability to listen and understand in English?
  • What other strategies can I use to build listening capability and how can I integrate them into my teaching and planning cycle as required?
  • Do my English language learners have a deeper level of topic understanding than their spoken English contributions to class discussions reveal?
  • How does what they draw reveal gaps in my students’ knowledge and what does this mean for my future teaching?