Accents, fast speech, idioms and slang – these features of spoken English make listening one of the biggest challenges learners face. But low-level learners don’t want to wait to learn real English – they want to understand it now. And even at higher levels real-world listening continues to be challenging. How can teachers help learners at every level engage with authentic input? Using TED Talks as examples, this session looks at some of the brain science related to listening and offers practical tips for how to create success-oriented lessons for the classroom at any level.
Lewis got his first taste of teaching English in Barcelona in the late 1980s. The experience inspired him to get a Master’s in TESOL, after which he taught at a university language center in Arizona and then a manufacturing company in Japan. In 1995, he took an editorial job with a major publisher in Hong Kong developing materials for Asia, and in 1997 became a freelance editor, project manager and writer in the UK. He has worked on books, videos, tests, audio materials, worksheets, apps and online materials for English learners of all ages across the world. His most recent projects are National Geographic Learning’s Keynote and Perspectives, featuring TED Talks.