Listening Practice (Native Content)

I feel it is important from the beginning to include listening practice from native content that is not necessarily geared towards learners. This can be used in conjunction with audio courses that are for learners ( e.g. Rocket, Pimsleur, etc.) as a method of honing real-world listening comprehension skills.

Ideally, at the beginner stage, the content you choose should have transcripts in the target language as well as a translation of that into English (or whatever your native language is). An excellent example of this is Radio Ambulante.

Practice Session

  • Choose an episode about a topic of interest to you.
  • Print out (or convert to PDF or Word) the Spanish transcript and the English translation.
  • Read the English translation.
  • Listen to the episode (which is completely in Spanish) not reading anything.
  • Read the Spanish transcript.
  • While reading the Spanish transcript, highlight any words or phrases you are unfamiliar with but want to learn.
  • Write those words or phrases into your vocabulary notebook.
  • Enter those words or phrases into Anki, to use for spaced-repetition vocab practice.

I want to start incorporating this once a week as part of my study with an end of week review, and then an overall monthly review.

For example:

  • Choose an episode every Sunday, and follow the above steps.
  • Drill the vocab in Anki Monday through Saturday.
  • Re-listen to the episode the following Sunday and note the level of comprehension.
  • Pick a fresh episode, and work through the same process with that during the week.
  • Once a month, go back and listen to the previously selected episodes and note level of comprehension.

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