Advice for Learning English

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Listen VERY Carefully!

Listening is very important when learning English. To be successful, you must listen to all kinds of things - songs,video, TV or radio news, DVDs. You can even listen to your teacher's voice! When you listen a lot, it is called "extensive listening". This kind of listening can help you get used to hearing lots of English so that you can respond even if you do not understand 100 percent. However, there is another kind of listening called "intensive listening". With intensive listening, you do not have to listen to a lot of English, but you must try to listen so carefully that you can understand 100 percent.

For example, you can listen to Teacher Joe's Dictations. You may not be able to understand each sentence the first time you listen, but you can listen again and again. When I first learned French, this is what I did. Actually, my teachers did it in class and later I did it myself using cassette tapes. After you do all of Joe's dictations, you can try writing down anything you hear on a DVD, CD or MP3 file. You might need a teacher to check your results, but be sure to try many times yourself before you ask for help.

When you can get 90 percent of all words in a sentence or paragraph, you might be ready to try something more difficult. By that time, you will be able to catch more and more sounds of English, which will help you understand new words more easily. It will also help you to pronounce English better, especially if you repeat each sentence out loud after you write it down. Try intensive listening every day, at least for ten minutes each time. I think you will see after a few weeks that both your listening and your speaking will improve.

Kung Fu Kitty!

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