Dictation is listening to someone speaking and then trying to write what you hear.
Practicing dictation can help improve your:
English listening skills
Writing and Punctuation
Speaking and pronunciation (if you speak the words you hear – out loud – while you’re writing it)
The EnglishClub website has a good collection of dictation exercises, at 3 different levels of difficulty. Here’s an example:
1. Listen to the dictation at normal speed (just listen; don’t try to write it).
2. Listen again at slow speed and try to write/type what your hear (with a smartphone, you need to use paper).
Include capitalization and punctuation.
3. Listen again at slow speed if you need to.
4. Listen at normal speed for a last check.
5. When you’re ready, click/press Show Answer and compare the answer to your writing. (The mailbox is just behind the big water fountain.)
Are there words – or groups of words – that are are especially difficult for you to pronounce, or understand, in English? “uncomfortable”; “sixth”; “how much does this cost”; “what are you going to do”?
On YouGlish.com you can type in those words, and then listen to how they are said – as part of conversation – by many different people in YouTube videos. Try it below. (Press the button to go to the next video.)
Reading books and listening to audiobooks is an excellent and enjoyable way to improve your English. Did you know that you can borrow eBooks and audiobooks (with thousands of choices) – for free – right on your phone or tablet? All you need is a library card from your local library, and the new Libby app from OverDrive.
There are SO many videos on YouTube that can help you improve your English grammar (and much more!). Search for a video lesson about anything you want to study. You can start by searching for: beginner English grammar.
You will see many choices for videos. Which one should you watch?
How much time the video takes – 5 minutes? 30 minutes? 2 hours?
How many people watched (viewed) the video
(1.3M = 1.3 Million = 1,300,000)
(14K = 14 Thousand = 14,000)
When was the video put on YouTube – 2 weeks ago? 8 years ago?
When you find a video you like, you can look for more videos by the same people. Many people have a “channel” – a group of their videos – that you can go to on YouTube. Examples of some good YouTube channels for English learners are: Jennifer ESL, EngVid, and Rachel’s English.
Lots of free movies will be shown outside this summer all around MetroWest and Greater Boston. Movies usually begin at sundown. If the weather is “iffy”, it’s good to check for cancellations before you go.
Here are some locations with outdoor movie nights this summer:
Boston – Hatch Shell on the Esplanade – Free Friday Flicks every Friday
Pretty location along the Charles River, big screen, lots of space, lots of people
Movies start around 8; Games before that starting at 6:00