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Three rules for improving listening

  Tags: Listening
 Language Learning Forum : Learning Techniques, Methods & Strategies Post Reply
105 messages over 14 pages: 1 24 5 6 7 ... 3 ... 13 14 Next >>
Bakunin
Diglot
Senior Member
Switzerland
outerkhmer.blogspot.
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 Message 17 of 105
25 March 2013 at 5:29pm | IP Logged 
DaraghM wrote:
Ari wrote:
Don't waste your time listening to stuff that contains a bunch of words you don't know. Listening is crap for expanding your vocab.


I don't agree with this. I prefer to hear unknown words before I read them. If I read them first, I won't be sure how they're pronounced exactly . Also, if I listen to material I already know, this won't help me when faced with real world scenarios. Personally, I feel a lot of language learners don't spend enough time listening extensively, and especially to unknown material.


I also was stunned about this statement. I've learned loads and loads of words in Thai and other languages through extensive listening, and I usually really enjoy the process.
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Serpent
Octoglot
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Russian Federation
serpent-849.livejour
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 Message 18 of 105
25 March 2013 at 6:03pm | IP Logged 
DaraghM wrote:
I feel a lot of language learners don't spend enough time listening extensively, and especially to unknown material.
This.
1 person has voted this message useful



kujichagulia
Senior Member
Japan
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Speaks: English*
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 Message 19 of 105
26 March 2013 at 1:52am | IP Logged 
I understand that listening to material that is at, or somewhat above, your level is very good for language learners. I also understand that it is good to have a transcript of what you are listening to.

That said, it can be quite difficult to find materials that fit both of these criteria - especially if you, like me, are not willing to pay a buttload of money for them. Especially for beginners, the only listening material I can think of that meets a beginning/lower intermediate level student, with transcripts, are the (Language)Pod101 podcasts. Books with audio tend to be for more upper intermediate/advanced students.

So it seems that the only way beginners and lower intermediate students can benefit from listening to native audio, in my opinion, aside from the aforementioned podcasts, is to listen to material that is way above their level, but not to listen for vocab, grammar, etc. Just listen to the sounds, get to know the way the language sounds, how people add intonation to their sentences, pick out the words that you do know, use Iversen's "listen like a bloodhound" method, etc.

I've been doing this with Portuguese (in addition to the PortuguesePod101 podcasts), and while it does zilch as far as teaching me new vocabulary, grammar, etc., it does reinforce the vocabulary that I do know. Yesterday I heard "parecem" in a Portuguese news podcast, and because I had recently learned it, a light bulb popped in my head, and I could remember the meaning as well as hear the native pronunciation of the word. That strengthens "parecem" in my head.
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Ari
Heptaglot
Senior Member
Norway
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 Message 20 of 105
26 March 2013 at 6:52am | IP Logged 
Jeffers wrote:
I agree with most of what you've written Ari, but you do tend to exaggerate for rhetorical effect, when describing something as "crap" just because it might be less efficient than something else.

You're right, I do do that and I'm sorry about it. I'll try to express myself a bit more cautiously. The truth is of course that these are things that I've found to be true in my learning, and YMMV, as always. Other learners might have methods that work better for them, for a variety of reasons. But since I know that I would have benefitted by being told this stuff earlier, I'm assuming others can, too, so I wanted to share.
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Ari
Heptaglot
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Norway
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 Message 21 of 105
26 March 2013 at 7:01am | IP Logged 
Bakunin wrote:
I also was stunned about this statement. I've learned loads and loads of words in Thai and other languages through extensive listening, and I usually really enjoy the process.

I honestly don't understand how this works, and I've never found it to be true for myself. Listening will strengthen words I already know, but for teaching me new ones, it's super slow and inefficient, for me. Do you stop and think about the new word, even look it up, or do they all just ooze into your brain automatically? That sounds like I'm being sarcastic, but I'm genuinely curious. How does it work?
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Ari
Heptaglot
Senior Member
Norway
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Speaks: Swedish*, English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Mandarin, Cantonese
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 Message 22 of 105
26 March 2013 at 7:04am | IP Logged 
kujichagulia wrote:
So it seems that the only way beginners and lower intermediate students can benefit from listening to native audio, in my opinion, aside from the aforementioned podcasts, is to listen to material that is way above their level, but not to listen for vocab, grammar, etc. Just listen to the sounds, get to know the way the language sounds, how people add intonation to their sentences, pick out the words that you do know, use Iversen's "listen like a bloodhound" method, etc.

Personally, I don't think that's a very productive use of your time. Spend that time improving your vocab and grammar instead, and delay the listening practice until you have a solid base.
2 persons have voted this message useful



kujichagulia
Senior Member
Japan
Joined 3041 days ago

1031 posts - 1571 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Japanese, Portuguese

 
 Message 23 of 105
26 March 2013 at 7:33am | IP Logged 
Ari wrote:
Personally, I don't think that's a very productive use of your time. Spend that time improving your vocab and grammar instead, and delay the listening practice until you have a solid base.

So what you are suggesting is for a beginner student to put off listening to native materials until he/she has reached, say, A2 or B1?

I'm curious because it seems that you have had tremendous success with the listening aspect of language learning, and listening is my weakest aspect for both Japanese (B1) and Portuguese (perhaps A1, but maybe not there yet). I've incorporated elements of your ChinesePod method into my everyday study routine, and it has helped my listening out a lot. But I use that method with the dialogs from JapanesePod101 (Upper Beginner and Lower Intermediate) and PortuguesePod101 (Absolute Beginner and Beginner), as well as the dialogs from my Japanese and Portuguese textbooks. That listening material is suited for my level in each of those languages, so I think that is why it works. But material for natives sounds more interesting to me.

What I would like to find out is how successful learners of languages have incorporated things like podcasts aimed at native speakers into their study regimen.

Edited by kujichagulia on 26 March 2013 at 7:40am

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Ari
Heptaglot
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Norway
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 Message 24 of 105
26 March 2013 at 10:19am | IP Logged 
kujichagulia wrote:
So what you are suggesting is for a beginner student to put off listening to native materials until he/she has reached, say, A2 or B1?

What I'm suggesting is to avoid listening to material where you don't know (or are able to guess, in the case of transparent languages) most of the vocabulary. There are a couple of things you can do to get around it at beginner levels. One if to find native audio with a transcript. There you can look at the transcript and look up words you don't understand to increase the known/unknown vocab ratio. Another is to find native material at a low level, like children's shows. But yeah, I think there's little point in listening to largely incomprehensible audio. The "getting a feel for the sounds of the language" and "spotting for words you do know" arguments are, in my opinion, weak. You might get some benefit, but you can use the time better. The truth is that spending time with the language with the intention of learning it will eventually bring results, if you put in enough hours, but there are faster and slower paths to take.


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