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Listening: Familiar Stories

Level:  Intermediate

Skill:  Listening or Reading

Purpose:  to help you understand what you hear or read, because you are already familiar with the story.  The goal is to understand the story and to learn new words and constructions used in the story.

What to Do:

Step 1:  Finding a story familiar to you both.  They key is to find a story you are already familiar with, which the Language Helper (LH) also knows.  This may be difficult, but there are several things you can do.  If there is a local story told in a language of wider communication, which you can read or understand, you can familiarize yourself with  the story. Alternatively,  you can tell a story in a language of wider communication, so your LH can become familiar with it.  Bible stories often work well, if both you and the LH are familiar with them.

Step 2:  Telling the story.  Your LH tells the story while you record it.

Step 3:  Filling in the blanks.  You play back the story with your LH and ask about any words you don’t know.

Step 4:  Listening to the story.  You listen to the recording several times, focusing on different things:  the general story, new vocabulary, new constructions, linking words.

Variation:  Reading.

If you find a familiar story in print, you can use it for reading practice.  You might still ask your LH to either read the book aloud for you, or to paraphrase the story while you make a recording.  In that way you can practice both reading and listening comprehension.

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