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Competency 602.9.3: Teaching Listening and Speaking - The graduate designs instruction that promotes the development of effective speaking and listening skills.
A. Explain (suggested length 2-3 paragraphs) one listening strategy that would be easily incorporated into any lesson plan and that reinforces the use of listening skills.
One listening strategy that would be easily incorporated into any lesson plan and that reinforces the use of listening skills is summarizing the main points of the lesson after the presentation. Summarizing the main points of a lesson will help the listener to understand and remember the main ideas from the presentation. Summarizing or paraphrasing the speaker's presentation while and after listening will help the listener increase their chances of remembering what was said.
Another strategy that could be easily incorporated into any lesson is note-taking. Having a written summary of the presentation will be helpful for referring back to later. Listeners should be encouraged to develop their own not-taking style to enable them to note important parts of the presentation quickly. Some methods for not taking are using different colors for main points or examples or ideas, using abbreviations, using symbols, drawing pictures, or grouping methods for notes (for example writing the lecturers points on one side and the listeners' responses on the other side).
B. Create an activity that is meant to develop a specific listening skill (e.g., attention, focus, hearing main ideas).
Clearing the listener's area of distractions is an activity that is meant to develop the specific listening skill of focus. By removing items that may cause the listener to become distracted the listener should be more able to focus on the speaker. The listener should focus his or her full attention on the speaker. A way to ensure that the listener's full attention is on the speaker is by facing the speaker directly and clearing the area of distractions such as cell phones or outside noises.
Another activity meant to develop a specific listening skill is summarizing to clarify understanding. The listener should summarize the presentation to ensure that they have not misunderstood anything. Another reason to summarize is to demonstrate listening comprehension and recall important information. This will help the listener to clarify the meaning of the presentation. This will also help prevent confusion about the meaning of the lesson. It is important for listeners to make sure that they have checked themselves for comprehension while listening and at the end of the listening activity. Monitoring comprehension is integral to developing a deeper understanding of the topic presented on. If the listener misunderstands something from the presentation and does not check to make sure that they were right, then they may have a misguided interpretation of the presentation which will cause them confusion.
C. Discuss (suggested length 2-3 paragraphs) how to support the learning of listening skills.
There are several ways to support the learning of listening skills. One of the main ways to support the learning of listening skills is to consistently use active and effective listening. With out constant practice of listening skills, a listener is likely to forget some of the techniques that they have at their disposal. In order to support the learning of listening skills the listener must always listen for meaning. The listener must try to find the purpose for listening.
The listener should face the speaker and show attentiveness through body language. The listener should always strive to maintain eye contact with the speaker. The listener should also respond appropriately to the speaker both by non-verbal responses to speaking and by direct verbal response to questioning. The listener should give the speaker his or her full attention and focus solely on what the speaker is saying. The listener should minimize internal and external distractions to ensure that he or she can focus on the presentation at hand. The listener should also try to keep an open mind about what the speaker is saying and empathize whenever possible with the speaker. It is important to see the topic from the speaker's perspective. The listener should strive to engage him or herself in what the speaker is saying whenever possible and not to interrupt the speaker. The listener should reserve questioning until the end of the listening activity. It is important to use these strategies to develop listening skills.
On group of techniques that incorporate different strategies for listening is called active listening. Active listening is the process of listening attentively to the speaker by use of various techniques. Active listening is the continuous and interactive process of listening to a speaker or presentation. The steps involved in the active listening are: focus attention on the speaker (clear away distractions), listening and understanding (verbal and nonverbal cues), empathizing (look at the topic from the speakers point of view), asking and encouraging the speaker, and paraphrasing and summarizing.
D. Discuss (suggested length of 1-2 pages) why listening is important to the development of language.
Listening is important to the development of language because one of the main ways people are exposed to language is through verbal communication. Babies listen to their parents talk to them in order to learn how to mimic those sounds and communicate with the outside world. Listening and hearing are two different things. Hearing is the physical ability to receive sound. Listening is the process by which those sounds are decoded and understood. Listening is important for learning; whether learning language or math or science. Students listen to auditory input in order to discover new information and then convert this information into knowledge. If students or children cannot listen to new information they will not be able to transfer that information into lasting knowledge.
Listening is vital to developing language skills. Children respond to auditory stimuli and turn the information from this stimulus into knowledge. Children hear sounds which they then use to understand words and eventually develop a concept of the meaning of the sounds and words. Listening is one of the most important parts of communication, the other part is speaking. In language development people must be able to both hear and speak. Students must be able to listen to stimuli and then respond in kind to facilitate the development of knowledge. Children especially must be able to form words based on hearing them.