It’s a new week, with lots of learning fun ahead. Today’s podcast looks at setting your own speed for learning English. We use several of the 7 rules of Adept English to suggest ways of learning will help you take control of the learning process. We also give some advice on how you should set your own language goals for learning English through listening.
Today’s podcast is an important lesson, it’s a reminder that you the listening English language learners are the ones in control. Of course we want to help you learn English as quickly and easily as is possible, but we also recognise that everyone is different and we all learn at different speeds. In today’s podcast, we suggest several ways on how you can learn at your speed and we cover this in the podcast episode.
Our goal is to help anyone who is interested in improving their English language. Whether you’re looking for a quick boost or an ongoing commitment, listeners can all learn a lot from our English lessons.
However, it's challenging to choose the right resource for your needs. It’s one of the main reasons we produce such different podcasts. Some will appeal to you, some won’t. We have so many to choose from you will definitely find some that you find interesting enough to engage with the content when you are listening.
Your mind will answer most questions if you learn to relax and wait for the answer.
⭐ William S. Burroughs
Although it’s fine to listen to every one of our podcasts starting at 1 and working through to the latest 464, you don’t have to work this way. You could just focus on English listening or English grammar lessons, and then only pick the ones you like from those groups.
You can find all of our back catalogue podcast episodes, sold as bundles of 50 podcasts here. These podcast bundles enable you to improve your English skills while listening to hours of great English lessons.
Psychotherapy Commitment Catalogue Goals Emulate Engage
|To Learn English||3|
|Listening To Us||3|
|A Lot Of||2|
|You Don’T Understand||2|
|You Listen To||2|
Hi there and welcome to this latest podcast from Adept English. Just wanting to say a big ‘thankyou for listening to us’ and for supporting Adept English, by listening to us online and through buying our courses and podcasts – we really appreciate your support. And I know that you benefit from our learn English courses and the 50-podcast download service on our website, because I get a lot of emails from people, telling me how much their English has improved as a result of listening to us.
If you’re using Adept English to learn English online and you would like to support us, please give us a review or a star rating where possible online. And if you’re listening on Spotify, as a lot of people have pointed out, you can’t give us a review there – but you can follow us on Spotify to show your support. And also you can share our episodes with your friends on Spotify. Both of these are a really good way to support Adept English – and of course, you can do those for free!
Anyway, today’s topic. From time to time in our topics, I return to our core ideas around how to learn English language – and develop the themes which are outlined in the Seven Rules of Adept English Course. One of the pieces of feedback that we’re getting at the moment, is that it’s difficult to keep up with the volume of podcasts that we put out.
Depending upon your level of English, you may need to work with a podcast for a few days, with many repeat listens, just as we suggest, before you’re happy you understand that podcast and you can move onto the next one. This way of listening and using podcasts is the best way to learn English language, so it’s OK to take your time.
It’s really important to have the experience of not understanding everything on first listen – and of listening again a few times, before you look up any words you don’t understand. In a way, this echoes real-life. If you’re in a real-life conversation in English, it’s likely that you won’t understand everything to begin with.
We have a phrase in psychotherapy ‘the ability to sit with the not-knowing’. This refers to a person’s ‘ability to handle uncertainty, to handle not-knowing’. And here, if you get accustomed to, used to understanding the overall meaning when you listen to podcasts, without the need initially to understand every tiny, little piece of it, then you’ll become more comfortable with that when you’re doing English conversation. And not understanding some part of what’s being said, won’t distract you or undermine you in the same way.
You won’t be ‘floored’ as we say, if you don’t understand part of what’s being said. You’ll ‘take it all in your stride’. Just throwing in some idioms there for you!
So if you listen to a podcast on repeat, you’ll probably surprise yourself by just how much more you can understand on the second, the third and the fourth listen. There’s a phrase in English ‘To have another bite at the cherry’. Rather a bizarre one – a cherry, CHERRY, is a fruit – my favourite fruit in fact.
But this phrase ‘to have another bite at the cherry’ means that you can ‘have the opportunity again – and make more progress with it each time’ rather than it being a one-off opportunity. So the benefit of listening to podcasts, is that you can play them over again and allow your understanding of a podcast to develop.
With conversation, usually you just get once chance to understand – so that’s more difficult. But if you’re listening to podcasts, you can have ‘as many bites of the cherry’ as you need! What’s also important, especially where you’ve had to really work hard at a podcast, is to give yourself the experience, once you’ve understood everything, of listening to that same podcasts a few more times.
That way, you get to experience your understanding being automatic – another thing which is really important. You move from consciously working really hard to understand a podcast, to just understanding it automatically. And that’s a really important process for your brain and an important experience for you to have!
So taking your time over each podcast is important – unless of course, you’re at a level where you understand pretty much every podcast on first listen. If your English is that good, you’re probably just listening for pleasure and to keep your English language nice and ‘polished’.
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In which case, you probably could listen to every podcast – and much more English language content as well. But if you’re not at that level, you don’t need to be concerned if you can’t listen to every Adept English podcast enough times to understand it all.
What’s much better is if you pick and choose the podcasts that look interesting to you. If I’m talking about something that’s interesting to you, then you’re much more likely to do that repeat listening. And if you go along with the idea of ‘spaced repetition’, which is good for your learning, it may be good to listen to one podcast over several days, then when you get to a good level of understanding, perhaps start a second podcast. But then come back to the first podcast and listen a few more times – to emulate this ‘spaced repetition’ idea.
That’s the best way to learn. So probably, if you’re doing that, you’re not going to manage to do all of them. And it’s not important that you do.
We do a variety of topics for a reason. Some of the podcasts are really what we call ‘nitty gritty’ – that means ‘down to basics’. I’ll cover some aspect of English grammar – and give you more of a traditional lesson, except of course that’s it’s all done through our Listen & Learn technique.
That means that actually every single word of the lesson is helping you learn English, so the learning is happening unconsciously – as well as the conscious efforts that you’re making to arrive at an understanding the aspect of grammar that I’m teaching. I do podcasts regularly on English idioms or on phrasal verbs – or English verb tenses. And I keep returning to these topics because I know that these are the areas where English is particularly difficult. So these lessons, these podcasts are important.
But I realise also that not everyone wants to learn in this way. Lots of people prefer having a podcast in English that takes account of their language learning needs – but is on a completely different topic, one that they find interesting in its own right.
So there’s always a transcript. And I’ll spell out and give definitions for the less common words and expressions, which hopefully leaves you free to listen to something that’s actually interesting. I sometimes do news, current affairs, interesting facts about the world.
Sometimes I do gardening or cooking topics – or about ecology and animals. Sometimes I talk about scientific research, much of it that I come across because of my other job, as a psychotherapist, which I think is of general interest. And sometimes it’s just personal stuff – my own experiences.
So what’s the message here? What I am trying to say? Well, I guess it’s that there are a number of ways to use the podcasts, depending upon how you prefer to learn – and on your level of language learning. If you find them easy, then just go for it. Listen to as many as you possibly can.
It’ll be rather like listening to a podcast channel in your own language – mainly for pleasure and it’ll just keep your English language polished and at a good level. But if the podcasts aren’t that easy for you, then don’t try to do them all.
Pick and choose – select those ones where the title or the introduction sounds interesting. There’s always an introduction to the topic on our website at adeptenglish.com and you can use this to help you choose. If you feel that you’d benefit from brushing up your grammar – or your phrasal verbs, you can choose to work on those podcasts. But if you prefer ‘general interest’ podcasts, where your learning is much more unconscious, then there are plenty of quite random topics and podcasts on lots of different things.
Another English idiom ‘Variety is the spice of life’! So the aim is to give you ‘a varied diet’ of podcast topics to keep you listening and keep you learning.
So if you do find the podcasts are quite difficult and it takes you a long time to work through and understand them, then consider buying our Most Common Five Hundred Words Course.
This course takes the five hundred most used words in English – and gives you lots of material to listen to, using just these most common 500 words. It’s a really simple idea, but people find it really helps them improve their basic English – and as far as I’m aware, there isn’t another course anywhere that does it like this.
So go to our website at adeptenglish.com and buy the Most Common Five Hundred Words Course. And when you’ve spent time with this course, try the podcasts again and see how much better your level of English is.
So there we have it - how to learn English step by step. Enough for now. Have a lovely day. Speak to you again soon. Goodbye.
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- Idiom: Another bite at the cherry
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