2 different ways to improve your English listening skill…

There are two different methods you can use to improve your listening and both are very important.

I’m pretty sure that you already use the first method I’m going to talk about. But I bet that most of you don’t use the second one.

If you start working your listening skill through both ways, I can guarantee you that your listening level is going to improve a lot. And moreover the other skills and above all your speaking skill is going to follow this improvement.

Let’s take a look at the strategies you have to combine from now on…

2 different ways to improve your English listening skill faster

First strategy: Work your English listening skill actively

Here there is no secret.
I’m pretty sure that you already work your listening skill actively:
It’s when you stop doing anything else and concentrate to work your listening.
You just sit in front of your TV, computer, tablet or phone…. and concentrate, listening to your favorite TV show, film, documentary…
Doesn’t that ring a bell?

It’s very important to work your listening skill actively and you must keep doing it as much as possible in a regular way.


Second strategy: Work your English listening skill passively

Here is the trick!
Last but not least, the second way to improve your listening (passively) is as important as the first one (actively).I even think that is more important, but a lot of people don’t use it regularly.

It’s just when you listen passively to English stuff while doing your daily activities. It’s very important to use your daily tasks, your common activities, to work your listening skill in “autopilot”.


How to work your English listening skill passively

You just have to keep doing and concentrating on your primary task (your daily chores) while you listen “semi consciously “to your English stuff as a secondary task.

  • You concentrate 80% on your main task.
  • You only concentrate 20% on what you are listening to.


When can you work your listening skill passively?

  • While cleaning your house
  • While walking
  • While driving
  • While taking a shower
  • While doing easy or repetitive tasks at your job
  • While doing the dishes
  • While cooking
  • …And so on…


How to do it?

You just need your Headphones and your MP3 Player full of songs, audio books, podcasts, radio shows, news, whatever you like… just in English.


As a personal Example…

I always listen to my MP3 player that is full of English stuff while doing any task that allows me to listen in autopilot (semi consciously).

I don’t concentrate 100% on what I’m listening to.
I concentrate 80% on my primary task (for example cooking) and concentrate 20% on what I’m listening.
I’m currently listening to a show that I like very much: Comedy Central Presents

I mostly work my listening passively when:

  • Doing house chores
  • While driving or walking to work
  • Before falling asleep at nights
  • When I wake up and stay sometime at bed before going to the shower

After combining these two strategies for a long period, you are going to feel that your listening is gradually improving. You are going to understand English in a natural way without any effort.


And Remember…

2 different ways to improve your English listening skill faster_

-Are you already using these two strategies to improve your listening?
-Are you going to try them?
-Is it working for you?
…All your comments are very welcome!!!

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  • Gustavo

    Hey There!
    Very useful tip! I’m started to use it a few time ago my first trouble is to understand musics, but I’m pretty sure that I’ll be able to understand it soon!


    1. George

      Hi Gustavo,

      You can use songs to improve your listening but also podcasts, audiobooks…

      1) Try to choose materials that you really like and care about.
      2) Try to Choose materials that match your current level (avoid too easy or too difficult ones).
      3) Be aware that the first times you do something are always the most difficult ones. If you don’t give up and keep doing it, it’s going to be easier and easier overtime.
      4) Listen a same material more than once and more than 20 times if needed. It helps me a lot to do that.

      Thank you very much for your comment!!!

    2. Amir

      That’s because usually singers don’t follow the grammars

      1. George

        Hi Amir, You’re right.

        In song sometimes singers don’t follow all the grammar rules. They remove or change words at their will because they need the lyrics to fit into the music.
        In Pop or Rock music is not that bad. I don’t know for other music genres like Rap…
        As English learners we have to be careful about that.

        Thanks for your comment!!!

  • Gutemberg

    Hello George,

    Thanks for giving us these great tips! I was surprised as soon as I read your article talking about this second strategy to work our English listening skill passively. Now I’m pretty sure from now on my English will get better faster!

    Thanks again for your precious help!

    1. George

      Hi Gutemberg,

      I like to know that I’m helping you to improve your English!

      It’s true that when we want to improve our English we completely forget about learning it in the passive mode too.
      We always think about sitting down at our desk to work our English, but in the other hand we don’t make the most of our leisure time or our daily chores in order to keep working our English but this time passively.

      The best way to improve your English is to use both the active and passive learning mode at the same time.
      I recommend you to check every now and then if you are still using the passive learning mode. It’s very easy to stop working your English passively when it’s not a habit for you.
      As an example, whenever I have to cook, wash up the dishes, clean the house… the very first thing I do is to put my headphones to listen to English stuff.
      Make the most of this technique to improve your English a lot!

      Thank you so much for your kind comment.


  • jane

    Congratulations for the work, and thanks for the tips, I am improving my English alone, and found very good tips, especially of phrasal verbs.
    Many thanks and hugs.

    1. George

      Hi Jane!

      I’m very happy to know that I’m helping you to improve your English! Keep learning English and enjoying the whole process!
      For any doubts I’m here you you!!!


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