Everyone who is in the JDA English community will already know that I regard listening to be extremely important when it comes to making progress with English (If you’re not in my community, you can join by clicking here: you’ll get a FREE book too!).
I suggest that you fill your MP3 player and/or phone full of English podcasts and music. In fact, I recommend deleting anything in your native language (that way there is no choice between English or your native language).
Podcasts, especially conversational podcasts, are perfect to listen to while on the go. You can listen to English podcasts while doing other activities, such as:
- Going to work.
- Doing housework.
- Walking the dogs.
Always have your music player with you wherever you go, and always be listening to English. Even if you’re not fully concentrating on the English, it’s still helping you get used to the sounds and rhythm of English.
The majority of learners that I communicate with are looking for ways to improve their conversational English. So, it makes sense then to listen to podcasts that involve conversations.
By listening to lots and lots of conversations you will learn the correct vocabulary, pronunciation, collocations, expressions, grammar, and sentence structure that are needed for conversations. And, you can do this while listening to things that you enjoy.
For example, one of students in my WizIQ course loves football (soccer in American English). So, he now spends his time listening to football podcasts. As well as getting used to conversational English, he is also becoming familiar with football terms.
The best way to look for conversational podcasts is on the website Stitcher. Then, if you want to download the podcasts, you can do this at iTunes. Soundcloud is also a great place to find and stream podcasts.
There are some great podcasts for English learners (for example, I was recently interviewed by All Ears English, and Real Life English also have some great audio), and I recommend downloading these podcasts as they are more natural and involve conversations.
If you are an intermediate learner or higher, then I recommend staying away from the slower English learning podcasts, and focusing more on natural audio (podcasts that aren’t specifically made for English learners). It might seem too fast at first, but:
- Listening to the same shows will mean that you will get used to the speakers.
- You need to push yourself a little and get used to natural English spoken at normal speeds.
- If you repeat the show, you’ll be amazed at what you understand the second time.
Listen as much as you can and you’ll soon get used to natural spoken English. You’ll never be able to adapt to normal speech if you never listen. So, give it a go!
Over to You
Take action today!
At JDA English we want to inspire you to take the necessary steps to set up your life so that your are surrounded by English. Here is what I want you to do:
1. Go to Stitcher and find five new shows that are conversational and also related to your interests..
2. Download the application or download the shows to the devices you use (use iTunes for this).
3. Delete audio that’s in your native language.
4. Try to listen to English for 2+ hours a day. Make it fun and interesting.
Now, I have a question for you:
What podcasts do you like listening to?
Leave your comments below.