Developing Listening Skills

The other day on Twitter, I was following with great interest the #SLTchat about intervention strategies for Year 11s. A thought that really struck a chord with me was that maybe it was too late to intervene in Year 11, that indeed should we start further down the road, learners would be better equipped to face GCSEs and A-Levels.

As KS3 coordinator for MFL, I think it is essential I work on this aspect with my department. Actually, we have already started by incorporating phonics into our scheme of work in a bid to improve speaking skills and confidence (note for self: this is another post idea!).

Language learners find Listening daunting. Why? Speed: Too fast is usually what they say.  Content: Too many unknown words? Wanting to understand every single word? Clarity?

So, as a teacher, what shall I do to help my learners? As a KS coordinator, what can I have in place in schemes of work throughout the years to build learners’ confidence up?

Starting in Year 7 when they are full of enthusiasm and still receptive to silly videos and songs is essential in my opinion.

Whilst tidying up my hard drive, I found a link to a cute little video which took me to a whole series called Doki descubre. Videos are about a minute long and there is a range of topics covered (from food to planets).

Watching the videos, some ideas popped in my mind: listening for key words, how many times can you hear…?, can you recognise any other words? As they are very short clips, you could easy play them several times (sound only, picture only etc). Brilliant as starters or plenaries, don’t you think?

Off I go to incorporate them into our schemes of work… Well, I should really have a nap first. It’s half term after all!

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