We all watch TV shows and films, but sometimes it gets hard to read subtitles when you are watching your favorite show you can miss a very important action scene when you are focusing on subtitles. The vocabulary allows them to understand media through reading subtitles, but their listening skills are not there yet. Now, this is not an issue for native speakers but for those who are learning the English language it can be a great issue. Here we are going to teach you some secret tricks that can bridge the gap between reading and listening comprehension which can help you in a long run and save you from a lot of problems.
- How can you do it? Without Subtitles
First, you are going to watch a scene or a clip without subtitles. This is going to give you a general idea about your English listening comprehension skills it will also give you information about some very important details like characters in the story, where it is taking place, what are their feelings, what are they going to do, what’s going to happen in the next scene, etc. These all details can give you an idea that what is going to happen in the show or film, it’s not important that you understand each word they are saying. This is also going to give you an idea that how much you understand about the scene, if this is your first time, and you understand around 40 percent, and when you are about to finish you might be able to understand about ninety percent of it.
If you are watching a show, and you can only understand fifty to sixty percent of what they are saying then it is likely possible that by the end of this method you will understand the remaining forty percent or even fifty percent no one knows.
On the second try, we are going to watch our favorite show with subtitles. This is going to assist you to fill the gaps with what you probably did not understand during your first viewing. During this, you might pause to check some meanings of the words along with their definition, but this can be a hassle, or you might write words on something and find the meanings and definitions during a short break or at the end of the show. It depends on your goal and style. If you are finding meaning during watching a show you might not be able to enjoy it that is why it is good to write it down by this you are not interrupting your viewing too much.
On the third try you are going to watch it again but this time without subtitles, you will be shocked at how capable your mind is of capturing the idea and remembering it all from the second perspective, and by this point, you are going to understand it a lot better. This method can be customized according to your taste and style and how you are going to understand it.
There are numerous types of listening. By understanding this method you can understand better what you are doing.
The gist: gist means the main or general idea of speech or text. This means that when you are watching a TV show, film, or YouTube video you don’t have to go into detail, just get an overall idea of it and try to understand what it is about.
When you are listening try to note down specific information or any specific detail about it. It can be anything like a keyword, or you can also note down the driving factor. When you start to understand the particular scene you are going to start understanding more of what is going on in it.
Now when we are trying to listen for detailed understanding we are going to understand everything that is involved in that particular moment. Now, this doesn’t imply on TV shows or films it is irrelevant to it. You listen for any detail, for example, if you are travelling, and you are trying to get instructions from someone to get from one place to another, you have to give your full attention to it, or you can get lost to remember every detail. Nevertheless, if you miss a word or any small detail then might have to repeat it a few times just so you can fully understand it.
Stephen Krashen is an American linguist that has done a lot of publications in the field of second language acquisition. His most important and famous work is Theory of Comprehensive Input. It states as follows
‘Learners progress in their knowledge of the language when they comprehend language input that is slightly more advanced than their current level.
This level of input is called “i+1” where “i’ is learner’s interlanguage and “+1” is the next stage of language acquisition.
Interlanguage is the English that you speak as a second language. While it is English, it still has some features of your native language. The more you can disassociate it from your native language, the better your English will be’.
As we see that the idea of +1 is very interesting. If we compare it to watching any TV show or film without subtitles, this would mean that the clip that you choose is a little above your current level of comprehension.
So comprehensive input is a material that you can understand more or less but when you give it your attention you can understand it much more.
(Krashen, Stephen (1977). “Some issues relating to the monitor model”. In Brown, H; Yorio, Carlos; Crymes, Ruth (eds.). Teaching and learning English as a Second Language: Trends in Research and Practice: On TESOL ’77: Selected Papers from the Eleventh Annual Convention of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Miami, Florida, April 26 – May 1, 1977. Washington, DC: Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages. pp. 144–158. OCLC 4037133)
- How can you do it? Without Subtitles