3 easy questions but students must infer from what they hear

I got a ride with K Sato, who teaches English at Oma High School in Aomori, from Shimonoseki to Okayama, on his road trip to Oita, Kyushu, via Korea, Biwa-ko and Kochi.

Here are 3 listening exercises for his students, 2 about relationships between the 2 of us, and one about my own trip.

I like to turn comprehension questions into math problems. It’s boring if the teacher just seeks to confirm whether the students understood what was said or not. And it’s also not how language works. That’s why Content Based Instruction (CBI) is good.

There’s an intimate connection between language and thought. You can’t be said to have understood unless you can make inferences from what was said, or react in some other way to what was said. (Though being able to repeat what was said, and being able to translate it into your own language is important.)

Listening tests that don’t require the making of inferences are doing a disservice to everyone involved.

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