Written by: Shaurya Vij, Avaneesh Bansal (8A)
On 27th April 2020, our English teacher, Ms Ashwini Deshpande, decided to go beyond the fixed syllabus and teach us an important life skill, that is Effective Listening. She used an International English Language Testing System (IELTS), video and test module to help us master various elements involved in Listening Skills.
When our English teacher told us that she is going to test our listening skills and help us master them, we thought it is going to be a super easy task and did not seem to be challenging at all. However, when the exercise started, we were startled to know that there are so many elements in mastering the listening skill which most of us in the class did not possess.
We had to watch a video from IELTS, which comprised 4 recordings of the native English speakers. The first recording was a conversation between two people set in an everyday social context. The second was a monologue on local facilities. Third covered a conversation amongst four people set in the training context and fourth was on a university lecture. The activity also comprised of 40 questions to be answered in 30 minutes. In the video, we could see the questions and we had to write down the answers in a word or two in our notebook.
While doing the exercise we realised that in order to be a good listener, we need to be extremely alert and attentive so as to capture the smallest details. By using the IELTS test module, we also received insight on how listening skills are tested for competitive examinations.
It’s rightly said that every good conversation starts with good listening. It is a vital skill for all, whether at school, office, at home or for any future competitive exams. Messages can be easily misunderstood due to the lack of listening skills which can lead to many glitches. Especially during the present trying times, the importance of ‘Listening’ is further highlighted, when the world is connecting virtually, even our classes now have shifted to virtual classroom.
Only after this exercise, we realised that why do we have two ears and only one mouth. Probably we are meant to listen more than we say.
We thank Ms Ashwini for helping us master a skill that is not part of the syllabus but teacher This small step by the school was a big leap for us as this skill will be useful for an entire life to remember to keep our ears always open!