Here are some excellent sites to practice your listening skills! Do you know any more sites? Feel free to share!
Also check out the “Song” page for links to listening exercises using songs.
Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab: This website has English listening practice for all levels. Choose your level and topic. Listen to a conversation. Take a short quiz to see how much you understood. You can do more vocabulary exercises, too.
English Club Listening: This website has different listening activities for all levels. There are dictation exercises, podcasts, news, and even videos. Some are very easy. Some are more difficult. The videos are very interesting!
Real English – lessons with videos showing random people on the streets from different English speaking countries talking. Each lesson has the video in 2 ways: one without close captioned words, one showing all the conversational words. You can also use your mobile devices (tablets/ smartphones) with a tailored version found here Mobile Real English
Natural English: Here are some examples of regular people speaking English. It will help your ear! Some are speaking British English, some are speaking American English.
Audio Picture Dictionary: On this website, you choose a topic. Put your cursor over a picture. Listen to the pronunciation. There are bilingual dictionaries, too, in Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, and more!
Dictation Finder – this has links to many other sites but it makes it easy to find a dictation topic you like at the right level for you
Learning English – Paid subscription site but has several free audio/videos at each of 5 difficulty levels.
ESL Video Quizzes – Hundreds of teacher created videos with related quizzes at 4 levels of difficulty. You listen and then answer questions about the video.
Voice of America (VOA) Learning English – has audio for current day’s stories. Also has a videos for English learner on different topics and English in a Minute videos explaining different idioms
Levels 1, 2, 3
Learning Chocolate: Audio dictionary with many activities!
Levels 4, 5, 6
The California Distance Learning Project: Choose from a variety of topics at the top of the screen, like Money, Working, Health and Safety, or School. Choose a story from the list. Click “Listen” at the bottom of the page. You can listen to the story and read at the same time. After you read, you can learn new words. Later, you can listen to a word and write it, play a matching game, or take a multiple-choice quiz.
Listen and Read Along: Choose a topic. Listen to the sentences. Practice speaking the same way as the speaker.
Frontline News: Here are videos about timely news topics.
Breaking News English – On this site, you can choose your level at the top of the page. Then you choose the story you want to read and hear. You can also choose the speed of the listening. You can listen to it very slowly or at normal speed.
- Radio stories from public radio – audio only – Advanced Levels
- Free Podcasts
- English Class 101 – Some episodes are for intermediate students, and some are for advanced students, but they are not organized so that you can choose your level. You can sign up for a free account on the website or listen on iTunes.
- Internet TESL Journals – links to other podcast sites ( so many to choose from)
- ESL Pod -creates several podcasts every week on many different subjects.
- All Ears English – Two women talk about American English. You can find this free podcast on the website or on iTunes. You can also download a transcript (written version) of each episode if you want. Click here for the the transcripts.
- How Stuff Works – Not specifically for ESL students but very useful. This website is FULL of information on so many things! You can read articles and listen to podcasts about almost anything. You can find all of them on iTunes.
- Listen and watch videos
- TED Talks – TED is a conference where people come to share ideas about technology (T), entertainment (E), and design (D), but people talk about almost everything. You can watch videos of the speeches from the conference online. Go to the website, and search for a topic you find interesting. You can even choose the duration (length) of the video. If you want to watch a short video, search for 0-6 minutes. If you want to watch a longer one, you can choose a different duration.
- * Lit2Go – online collection of stories and poems with audio format. Each one also has a downloadable PDF which can be used as a handout. Look at Readability page which allows you to select passages by grade levels.