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Listen for your word

Average: 3.8 (41 votes)

This is a simple way to improve students' concentration during listening activities.

Patricia Ielmini

I'd like to share an activity I learnt from Jeremy Harmer, in his last lecture here in my town. It's called story words and it can work with different levels.

  • First choose a text or a short story that students have never heard before, then choose lots of words from it and write them on the board at random.
  • Divide the class into two teams. Ask each student to secretly choose just one word so nobody knows anyone else's word. In order to prevent cheating later on, ask the students to secretly write their chosen word down.
  • Now ask all the students to stand up. Tell them they need to listen for their word and sit down when they hear it.
  • Finally, read the text or play the tape if it's already recorded. As students listen, they gradually all sit down. The team whose students are all sitting first is the winner.

With this activity, students concentrate, listen and have fun at the same time!

Language level
Language Level: 
Pre-intermediate: A2