ESL Listening Exercises
Listening Lessons

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Here you will find free esl listening exercises and lesson plans that use video clips and radio as a basis for discussion and learning vocabulary. I use video clips that cover a large range of topics, like photography, commercialism, intelligence, health...and so much more. Sometimes my students get so involved in watching the video clip, that they forget to do the esl listening exercises!

Listening to English being spoken by native speakers is a key part of learning the language. Traditional methods of learning involved a lot of grammar, written work and gap-fill exercises, which led to many being able to read English, but not understand it when it is being spoken.

Listening to native speakers speak the language has many important advantages:

  • You hear the language being spoken at the actual speed that it is used in real life
  • You learn the proper intonation of the language
  • Spoken English has colloquial vocabulary that is not used in the written language
  • You hear the correct pronunciation of words during the listening, so it will help you with accent reduction
  • You are exposed to different English accents from around the world
  • You have to begin to understand the spoken word, before you will be able to speak it properly yourself

I have also found that my students enjoy video lessons the best.

These esl listening exercises are appropriate for upper intermediate, advanced and proficiency level English. Some of the documentaries are quite long, and it would be impossible to show the whole video clip in one lesson. I have tackled this problem in various ways:

  • Show the class only part of the video clip during the class, and give them the rest to watch for homework
  • Do the discussion and vocabulary work in the class, and get them to watch the whole thing for homework
  • Divide the video clip up into a few segments and treat each one as an individual ‘mini’ lesson

Free Downloadable Lesson Plans

Abraham Lincoln

60 Facts about Our Awesome World

Daylight Saving Time



Planned Obsolescence


Life as a Spy





Eyewitness Accounts

If you are looking for some more lessons, try some of my Business Lessons, many of which are also suitable for general English lessons.

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