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How to teach LISTENING ‘WE HAVE TWO EARS AND ONE MOUTH SO THAT WE CAN LISTEN TWICE AS MUCH AS WE SPEAK’ EPICTETUS
THE WHY AND HOW OF LISTENING-MOTIVATIONS AND MECHANICS We learn to listen and we listen to learn.
The primary purposes of Human Listening • This refers to the general idea of what is being said, as well as who is speaking to whom and why, andListening for GIST how successful they are in communicating their point. Listening for • When we dont need to understand everything, but SPECIFIC only a very specific part. INFORMATION Listening in • When we cannot afford to ignore anything because DETAIL we don t know what kid of information we need. INFERENTIAL • The type of listening we do when we wish to know listening how the speaker feels. It may involve inferring.
Listening for Gist• A man speaking to a girl by phone.• He is asking her for suggestions about movies.
Listening for Specific InformationWhich are the type of movies she likes:• Comedy• Love stories• Foreign films
Listening in Detail• A man called Kathie• Asked her favorite kind of movies• He is making a party tonight• Kathie doesn´t like action movies because of the violence.• She enjoys comedies• She is not crazy about horror movies• Love stories are fun to watch• She likes foreign films
Inferential Listening• Man: Fine. Well, what do you think of horror movies or love stories?• Woman: Uh . . . Im not really crazy about horror movies, but love stories are often fun to watch. Oh, and I really like foreign films, too.
WHY LISTENING IS DIFFICULT• Characteristics of the message• Characteristics of delivery• Characteristics of the listener• Characteristics of the environment
How to teach LISTENING CONTENTBottom-up vs. Listening Listening Top-down texts SourcesPre-listening While- Post-listening skills and listening skills skills and activities and activities activities
Bottom-up versus top-down approaches to listening
Bottom-up versus top-down approaches to listening The bottom-up model emphasises the decoding of the smallest units- phonemes and syllables- to lead us towards meaning. The top-down model emphasises the use of background knowledge to predict content.
Processing input in the Bottom-up processInput goes through some stages:1. Take in speech – hold phonological representation in working memory2. Organize the P.R into constituents.3. Identify each constituent and construct underlying prepositions.4. Retain in working memory and purge it from P.R. Forget the wording and retain meaning.
Processing input in the Bottom-up processThe guy I sat next to on the bus this morning on the wayto work was telling me he runs a Thai restaurant inChinatown. Apparently it’s very popular at the moment”• The guy• I sat next to on the bus• This morning• Was telling me• He runs a Thai restaurant in Chinatown• Apparently is very popular• At the moment
Processing input in the Bottom-up processThe guy I sat next to on the bus this morning on the wayto work was telling me he runs a Thai restaurant inChinatown. Apparently it’s very popular at the moment”• I was on the bus• There was a guy next to me• We talked• He says he runs a Thai restaurant• It’s in Chinatown• It’s very popular now
Processing input in the Top-Down process“I heard on the news there was a big earthquakein China”• Where was the earthquake?• How big was it?• Did it cause a lot of damage?
Activating Schemata“I’m going to the dentist this afternoon”• A setting (the dentist office)• Participants (the dentist, the patient…)• Goals ( to have check up or to replace a filling)• Procedures (injections, drilling…)• Outcomes (fixing the problem, pain, discomfort)
Top-down process develops• INFERATION1. Setting2. Role and goals3. Causes of effects4. Unstated details5. Anticipate questions
Listening texts‘Language is powerful not only because there are competent speakers but because there are competent listeners’ (Sweden Graphics)
Listening texts What makes a good listening text? Authentic versus Pedagogic
What makes a good Listening Text? Interest Length Cultural Quality of accessibility reading Speech act/Content Delivery Discourse Speed structure Density Number of Speakers Language Level Accent
Content FEATURE QUESTIONS TO ASKInterest Will this be interesting for my students?Cultural accessibility Will my students understand the context and ideas? Does it discuss abstract concepts or is it based onSpeech act/ Discourse everyday transactions?structure Does the information come thick and fast or are thereDensity moments in which the listener can relax? Is the majority of the vocabulary and grammarLanguage level appropriate for my students?
Delivery FEATURE QUESTIONS TO ASK Will I need to cut part of the recording because it 1. Length is too long? Is it long enough? 1. Quality of recording Is the recording clear? Will background noise affect comprehension? 1. Speed Do the speakers talk too fast for my students? 1. Number of speakers Are there many voices, potentially causing confusion? 1. Accent Is the accent familiar? Is comprehensible?
Authentic versus Pedagogic AUTHENTIC SCRIPTED Overlaps and interruptions between • Little overlap between speakers. speakers. Normal rate of speech delivery. • Slower (maybe monotonous) delivery. Relatively unstructured language. • Structured language, more like written English. Incomplete sentences, with false starts, • Complete sentences. hesitation, etc. Background noise and voices. • No background noise. Natural stops and starts that reflect the • Artificial stops and starts that reflect speaker’s train of thought and the and idealised version of communication listener’s ongoing response. (in which misunderstandings, false starts, etc never occur)
PRE-LISTENING ACTIVITIES Activating Schemata/Predicting Brainstorming Visuals Realia Texts and words Opinions, ideas and facts
Brainstorming GOAL: To generate large numbers of ideas based on a topic or a problem. STAGES All Whittling the ideas contributions down to do before are accepted listening to factual without passages with one criticism. main topic.
Brainstorming Activities Students work alone, making notes From one to many on paper, before sharing the ideas with the group.
Brainstorming Activities Students in groups make a poster based on a given topic. A time limit Poster Display on this activity tends to keep the students focused.Other activity: Brainwalking
Visuals ADVANTAGES • They are immediate and evocative. • Students learn better when seeing images. • Visuals can help activate the schemata relating to any theme and any type of listening passage.
Visuals They can be used to help students Pictures recognise the lesson theme.
Visuals Students look at a chart, table or Diagrams graph. This provides a conceptual framework for their listening. Venn Diagram TENNIS FOOTBALL
Realia It acts as a link between the world of the classroom and the outside world. It is especially well suited to listening to anecdotes and stories. Objects in general bring with them memories and associations are aspects of our schemata.
Realia Using PhotosActivity: The teacher brings photos of friends and family. Ss will guess who the people are.Activity 2: Bring in photos of themselves at different ages. Ss make guesses about what type of person the teacher was at each stage.
Realia Guides, maps and They can be used as stimuli for conversations about places and travel brochures for features of towns and cities.
Texts and words Students read the transcripts with Gap-fill exercises blanked out words or phrases. Its late in the _________; shes wondering what clothes to wear. Shell put on her _________ and ________ her long blonde hair. And then she asks me, "Do I ______ alright?" And I say, "Yes, you _______ wonderful tonight." From ‘Wonderful Tonight’ by Eric Clapton.
Texts and words Students read the transcripts with Gap-fill exercises blanked out words or phrases. Its lady in the evening; shes wondering what nose to wear. Shell put on her May cup, and washes her long blonde hair. And then she asks me, "Do I cook alright?" And I say, "Yes, you cook wonderful tonight." Students underline anything that doesn’t seemright
Texts and words The teacher provides a list of key words from Key words the passage. The students use these words to predict what will happen in the text.
Opinions, ideas and facts With slightly higher-level learners. List of quotations to be discussed. Quotations Students will relate the quotations to the content of the listening.‘If you think education is expensive, try ignorance’.‘Good teaching is part preparation and part theatre’.‘The goal of education is to replace an empty mind with anopen mind.’
PRE-LISTENING ACTIVITIES Establishing reasons for listening Make the purpose realistic Make the goal achievable Get the students involved
Establishing reasons for listening From title to The teacher gives the students a title which question encapsulates the listening passage. How to look after a rabbit How do you look after a rabbit?
Generating questionsHigher-order questions: Do you playtouches on any contemporaryissues?Lower-order questions: Who doesMacbeth kill first?Display questions: Teacher: What time is it, The teacher is asking Denise? for a correct form Student: Two- thirty rather than for any Teacher: Very good, Denise! thought.
PRE-LISTENING ACTIVITIES Pre- teaching Vocabulary Pre- teach words that are essential to the meaning of the passage or to the completion of the set task. Pre-teaching words may also give students confidence as well as potentially useful information about the topic.
While- listening skills and activities‘No man ever listened himself out of a job’ (Calvin Coolidge)
WHILE-LISTENING ACTIVITIES Listening for GIST Listening for DETAIL Inferring Participating actively Note-taking Dictation Listen and Do
Listening for GISTListening for the main idea. What? Who? Why?
Listening for DETAIL Bingo Times, dates, Spot the numbers. differenceA story told twice Mixed focus Hoarse whisperers
InferringPause and Not her, not Twelve predict him questions
Participating activelylisten and interrupted describe storytellingtruth or lie Information transfer
Note-takingChoose only Use titles and important Paraphrase subtitlesinformation Use Use symbolsUse spaces abreviations and numbers Use emphatic Use diagrams markers Techniques
Dictation 1. How long should the text be? 2. 6. Are there any How will I deal unknown words? with punctuation If so, how and(having taught the when will I deal term first)? with them? DICTATION 5. 3. How will I know Waht speedwhen my students should I are ready to speak at? continue? 4. Where will I pause?
Reflecting If there is any problem we must look at: • Pronunciation (can-can´t) • Unknown vocabulary • Speed of speech (whaddayathinkaboutit) • Syntax • World knowledge (acronym, name or place)
Checking and Summarising Techniques: Take it in turns Note comparison
Discussion Techniques: Personalise Pros and cons
Creative Responses Techniques: • Genre transfer • Write on • Sound effect story
Critical Responses QUESTION EXAMPLES FURTHER COMMENT Do I believe the speaker? Don’t walk under that How do I know this is leader! It’ll bring you bad true? luck What evidence is there? Do I trust the speaker? I didn´t do it! No body How is the utterance saw me do it! You can´t influenced by the prove anything! speaker’s motives? Could the speaker have Weapons of mass The way they say things said it differently? If so, destruction have not yet can conceal or distort the how? Would this have been found message. Words come changed the meaning? with connotations. Skilled speakers know this and may exploit it
Purposes of the activity1. To develop imaginative skills.2. To promote discussions among students.3. To focus students on the contextual, lexical and grammaticalaspects of the lyrics.4. To relate students’ thoughts to world issues.5. To allow students to compare a song and a poem.6. To encourage students to explore further on the theme andwrite creatively.
Pre- Listening Activity Give out the lyrics of the song with some lines missing. Ask students to predict what these lines are and write them. Compare the answers with a partner or tell the whole class why they have these answers.
While-listening activity1. Play the song and askstudents to write down themissing parts of the lyrics.Compare the lyrics with theirprevious answers.2. Play another music video of ‘Imagine’ (A perfectcircle – Imagine)(Remind the students that there may be some sceneswhich make them sick or uncomfortable.)
Post-listening activity3. Ask students to choose one scene from the music video which can bestrepresent their feeling when they listen to the song/ which impressesthem most (e.g. wars, protests, starvation, injured children, the Pope,space programme, luxury cars, etc.) Explain their answers. (Variation:Show pictures of world issues from magazines, newspapers or otherwebsites while students are listening to the song.)4. Play the song again (with or withoutvideo). Ask students to write downsome impressive verses from the lyricsand their feelings on the double-entryjournal.
Post-listening activity5. Show students the poem ‘Imagine’ by Mike Murphy.(Worksheet 2).6. Ask students to write down some impressive verses fromthe poem and their feelings on the double-entry journal.7. Ask students to compare the two journals. Which (thesong or the poem) do they like most and why?Ask students to try to sing the poem when the teacher playsthe music of ‘Imagine’ by John Lennon.
Post-listening activity8. Ask students to write a review or a reflection on the songor the poem. What are their dreams? Are they the same asthe song writer’s or the poet’s? (Variation: Ask students torewrite one or two stanzas (or more) of the song lyrics andsing aloud.)
• Anderson, A and Lynch, T (1988) Listening, Oxford University Press. • Brown, G (1990) Listening to Spoken English (2nd edition) Longman. • Harmer, Jeremy (2008). How to teach listening. Pearson Education Limited.FURTHER • Rixon, S (1986) Developing listening skills, ELT.READING • Rost, M (2002) Teaching and Researching Listening, Pearson Education. • Ur, P. (1984) Teaching Listening Comprehension, Cambridge University Press. • White, G (1998) Listening, Oxford University Press
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