Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"
Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"

We had an email from a listener:

One of the biggest fears that I always feared is listening and speaking. I really don’t know the reason why. I tend to spend 3 hours every day learning English, and I also practice my listening skills by listening to the news and writing the news on paper word for word. But sometimes I feel bored and I want to give up because I really didn’t hear everything that was said and I don’t understand.

First thing- studying for IELTS should be fun, as much as possible!

Do not keep using resources if they are not benefiting you.

In this student’s case, he his creating a habit of being bored and not understanding English. He isn’t practicing the positive things or learning how to understand.

We could tweak this student’s activity to make it motivating and more effective.

Instead of listening and writing the words down, he could go online and find scripts for entertaining shows, such as The Big Bang Theory.

Read the script and watch the show at the same time to improve reading and listening. Then, you can practice the script with another person to practice speaking. These activities also teach you vocabulary, and the role-play will help with confidence and pronunciation!


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Let’s not just focus on news and current events. You can choose what you read! Try articles from the fashion, lifestyle and entertainment sections of newspapers.

Branch out in your resources and input! Get into some music!

Also, if you want more interesting ways to get the news, try The Daily Show (South African accent), This Week Tonight (British accent), Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, or Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me.

These resources will broaden your perspectives on current events as well.

As far as the amount of time to spend studying IELTS, we recommend 2-4 hours a day. The road map in our course provides activities to fill these hours, 5-6 days a week. Just make sure you are using your time wisely!

What do you think of today’s advice?

Leave us a message in the comments section below!


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