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Language Learning – Listening Lesson

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by Oli Redman on September 23, 2014 , No comments

Have you enjoyed studying English? Have you learned anything interesting or met people you get on with during your studies? Listen to two people talking about language learning in this free English lesson from Oxford Online English, including vocabulary notes and exercises.

Man: So how many languages can you speak?

Woman: I guess four, five if you count1 my native language.

Man: Wow! That’s amazing! How do you keep it all in your head2?

Woman: Well, it’s not like I speak them perfectly. My French is really rusty3. It just depends how much you practise.

Man: I wish I could speak as many languages as you.

Woman: Are you studying anything at the moment?

Man: I’m trying to study Italian, but I don’t feel like I’m getting anywhere4.

Woman: I used to study Italian. It’s a nice language.

Man: I find it really difficult, actually – much more difficult than French.

Woman: Really? I would say it’s the other way round5.

Man: To be honest, I’m not a natural6 when it comes to language learning.

Woman: People like to say that, but really it all comes down to7 hard work.

Man: Maybe. I guess I should go do some homework!

Woman: Alright, study hard!

  1. Count here means “include” or “consider as important.”
  2. Keep something in your head = remember something.
  3. Rusty = bad because you haven’t practised enough recently.
  4. I’m not getting anywhere = I’m not making any progress.
  5. The other way round = the opposite of what he said, i.e. she thinks French is more difficult.
  6. A natural = someone with natural ability, a talented person.
  7. It all comes down to hard work = hard work is the most important thing.

Correct the mistakes

  1. I’m not an expert when it comes at geography.
  2. Really? I’ll say it’s the other way round.
  3. How do you keep all of these different numbers in your mind?
  4. I’m trying to learn to drive, but I’m not really getting somewhere.
  5. I used to studying German.

Choose the right definition

6. rusty

a. very good at something
b. bad at something because you haven’t practised for a long time
c. bad at something because you don’t have any natural ability

7. it all comes down to practice

a. practice is the most important thing
b. you should practice more
c. practice is one of many important things

8. a natural

a. someone who can do something very well without trying very hard
b. someone who has learnt to do something very well
c. someone who has a lot of different abilities

9. it doesn’t count

a. it’s not fair
b. it doesn’t make sense
c. it isn’t important

10. I wish I could speak many languages

a. I could speak many languages when I was younger
b. I can’t speak many languages
c. I will be able to speak many languages in the future

  1. when it comes at when it comes to
  2. I’ll say I’d say
  3. in your mind in your head
  4. getting somewhere getting anywhere
  5. used to studying used to study
  6. b
  7. a
  8. a
  9. c
  10. b
Oli RedmanLanguage Learning – Listening Lesson

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