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assessing listening skills

Common Problems with Listening Tasks

Hello colleagues, As ESL teachers, we all design listening activities and then pay close attention to how well learners understand. In a recent blog, Clair Maas identified some common problems with different types of listening tasks, for example: gap fill, multiple choice, matching, and true/false. Do the problems Maas describes resonate for you?

What are some listening activities that you rely on in your teaching?

Cheers, Susan Finn Miller

Assessing Listening Skills

Hello colleagues, Several ESL teachers in my program are planning to focus on formative assessment this year. The teachers will be working on ways to assess all aspects of language including listening, speaking, reading, writing, vocabulary and grammar. Listening skills may be one of the more challenging aspects to assess.  What are some ways you assess the listening skills of the learners in your class?

Assessing Listening with Total Physical Response

Hello colleagues, I'm certain many teachers who teach beginning ESL use Total Physical Response (TPR) to assess students' listening skills. With TPR, the teacher gives prompts and the students respond with a physical movement. For example, the teacher might say, "stand up," and the students respond by standing up.

Assessing Listening with Beginning ELLs

Hello colleagues, I started teaching a new class today with beginning ELLs. Here's an activity I developed many years ago to assess listening skills. Since this was our first class, we spent some time getting acquainted. A routine I use daily is a conversation grid for students to interview each other. This conversation grid was designed to help students get acquainted. Students asked each other their names, where they were from, how long they've lived in the US, if they were married or single, and if they had children.

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