I’d just like to check I’m not making a mistake in how I go about improving my listening comprehension.
I spend 50% of my time listening to stuff that’s at my level, often things I’ve listened to before several times, like 10 minute podcasts, or YouTube videos.
The rest of the time I try to listen to stuff that is slightly beyond my current level. However, if I were to listen to the higher level stuff right through without stopping, I probably wouldn’t understand much of it. What I do is rewind several times, often every sentence, but it could be every second or third sentence (depending on if I understood or not). I can be there for a few minutes rewinding and repeating the same sentence, or cluster of sentences trying to understand it.
I find that eventually I can usually understand 90% + (so long as it wasn’t too far from my level), then I can pretty comfortably listen to the whole thing again without much of a problem. The thing is, I’m not understanding things in real time, and it’s not the words or grammar so much, but rather the speed and my ability to decipher it under pressure, in what would be a natural situation i.e a real conversation, or listening to live radio say, where you only get one shot.
One problem seems to be zoning out as soon as I don’t understand something, like I’m suddenly lost with it. It doesn’t really matter that there’s new sentences coming my way that I could understand, I can’t seem to get past the previous part I couldn’t understand, and it puts me off.
I believe what I’m doing is intensive listening, vs extensive listening. Don’t get me wrong, I can listen through something without needing to catch every single word, but if I’m below something like 75% comprehension (upon first listen), I seem to have problems with all of it and have to go back to my aforementioned method of rewind and repeat.
Just wondered if anyone thinks this could be detrimental? I have found in the past that I’m struggling to catch questions a teacher has asked me that are actually quite basic and should’ve been easy to understand. This has caused them to speak really slowly, using more basic constructions. I’m left wondering what the problem is, because I can understand quite complex things in comparison when I get more than one shot at it. What’s going on here?