How to improve your listening skills.
If your goal is to understand how native speakers when they are speaking informally then you need to LISTEN to native speakers and understand why the words they say sound jumbled together and with many unrecognisable words.
You need to listen to English as it’s really spoken. We connect words together, we use weak forms of common words so for example MY often sounds like MEH as the vowels is changed to the lazy schwa sound eH. We also use reductions and weak pronunciation so for example I don’t know becomes dunno.
You need to find short sound files of native speakers talking, but you need transcripts for you to read afterwards. Where do you find such materials? You can search on youtube or other places but such materials often do not have accurate transcripts. This is why I make these resources.
I make resources like this to show you a wide range of British English accents. In particular, I focus on the accents from the North of England which you are less likely to find in textbook recordings.
I have given the transcript and have also highlighted in blue the words which are spoken using the weak form which is used when the word is unstressed.
To make the best use out of this material.
1 Listen to the whole video and work out what it is about. Do NOT read the transcript.
2 Listen in short sections – for this video listen to each question and how he answers it. Write down exactly what you can hear. What words can you hear? If you can not hear a full word write down what it sounds like. Even though it might not make sense write down the sounds you can hear. This will help later to discover why it was hard to hear the real words.
3 Listen to each section multiple times and write down exactly what you think you hear.
4 Each time you listen again, you might be able to write down one more word that you can hear.
5 After listening multiple times……. Now listen and read the transcript.
6 Compare this with what you have written down for each section.
7 Listen and read my explanation of the transcript. The parts with the blue weak forms. These words written in blue are the words which perhaps did not sound like you expected them to.
8 If you let me know which parts were hard to hear I will help you to understand why this happened so that next time this will be easier.
9 If you want help with this write in the comments here which parts were hard to understand. Tell me what it sounded like.
If you want to discuss this further and to see the whole transcript written out with the blue weak forms and weak pronunciation detailed in blue, then come on over to my facebook group and join Helen’s Language Home Gathering.
If you want to be sent a short online course looking at Connected Speech then sign up to my mailing list.
I have more listening exercises looking at Manchester accent here.
0:01 All right, my name’s Liam Gallagher and I’m going to be answering my most googled questions.
A’right, my name’s Liam Gallagher an’ I’m gonna be answerin
g my most googled questions.
0:12 What is Liam Gallagher’s real name? God, and don’t forget it.
tis Liam Gallagher’s real name? God, an’ don’ f’gerit.
0:15 Why does Liam Gallagher wear a parka? Because it makes me look cool.
Why does Liam Gallagher weara parka? ‘cozit makes me look cool.
0:20 What is Liam Gallagher wearing? I’m wearing a parka, as per usual. And I’m wearing a pair of jeans, and a pair of pretty green kind of desserty boots.
tiz Liam Gallagher wearin g? I’m wearin ga parka, as perusual. An’ I’m wearin g a pair of jeans, an’a pair of pretty green kinda desserty boots.
0:30 Will Liam Gallagher tour in 2019? Of course, there’s nothing else to do. I’m starting a tour, and we’ll probably tour in November, a proper tour.
Will Liam Gallagher tour in 2019? Of course, there’s nothin
g else t’do. I’m starting a tour, an’ we’ll prob ably tourin November, a proper tour.
0:40 Why does Liam Gallagher say “As you were?” Because I know it annoys certain people.
Why does Liam Gallagher say “As you were?” ‘Coz I knowit annoys certain people.
0:46 Why does Liam Gallagher stand like that? Hum, interesting, I dunno man, I just reckon I’ve stood like this, I mean how else are you meant to stand? You’re meant to just stand how you’re meant to stand.
Why does Liam Gallagher stand like that? Hum, interesting, I dunno man, Ijus
treckon I’ve stood like this, I mean how else are you mean t t’stand? You’re mean t to jus tstand how you’re meant t’stand.
0:58 Why does Liam Gallagher sing like that? Because it makes me loads of money. And people love it.
Why does Liam Gallagher sing like that? Cozit makes me loadsa money. An’ people lovit.
1:04 Has Liam Gallagher got a new album? I’ve a new album and it’s called Why me? Why not. And it’s out in September.
Has Liam Gallagher gota new album? I’vea new album anit’s called Why me? Why not. Anit’sou tin September.
1:10 Why is Liam Gallaghers new album called Why me? Why not. It’s called Why me? Why not. because I got a picture, I bought a picture years ago, John Lennon’s art exhibition and then his wife Yoko Ono sent me another one and it had Why me? on it and the other one said Why not. That was about twenty years ago and so I thought I’d call my album that.
Whyiz Liam Gallaghers new album called Why me? Why not. It’s called Why me? Why not. because I gota picture, I boughta picture yearsago, John Lennon’s art exhibition an’ then
his wife Yoko Ono sent me another one an’it had Why me? onitan’ the other one said Why not. That was about twenty yearsago an so I thought I’d call my album that.
1:30 What is Liam Gallagher’s paper crown about? err err interesting, not sure what it’s really about. I guess it’s pretty self-explanatory, go and have a listen and work it out yourself.
1:44 Can Liam Gallagher drive? No
1:45 How far does Liam Gallagher run? I run for about an hour most days so however far that is… uphills, downhills.
1:54 Has Liam Gallagher run a marathon? Never. I’m not running with fried eggs and people dressed as pizzas and stuff. It’s not what it’s about.
2:03 Does Liam Gallagher have any tattoos? I’ve one tattoo right there and I’m not going to show you because I can’t be arsed taking my jacket off…..but it’s Elvis and it says “taking care of business in a flash. Faith Spirit Discipline,”
2:14 How tall is Liam Gallagher? Humm, I’d say about five-ten maybe five ..I don’t know maybe five-ten..summat like that… I’m not six foot anyway.
2:25 Is Liam Gallagher on twitter? Yes, I am on twitter. Check it out, it’s a good crack…
2:32 What shoe size is Liam Gallagher? I’m an eight and half, nine.
2:35 How old is Liam Gallagher? I’m forty-six I think but I could be forty-seven. I always get mixed up.
2:41 What is Liam Gallagher’s favourite Oasis song? Live Forever
2:47 Why did Liam Gallagher leave Oasis? I didn’t leave Oasis, Noel Gallagher left Oasis because he couldn’t handle the vibes anymore. He couldn’t handle the rock n roll so now he’s gone all Cosmic Pop, Leo Sayer… that’s what he couldn’t handle it, he’s too scared of it. Couldn’t handle the rock n roll.
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