I would like to explain what happens in listening class. I’m currently enrolled in the Regular speaking ESL program. We have three hours of one-on-one classes and four hours of group classes. For our listening class, it is one-on-one class that lasts for two hours.

In our listening class, we take up five minutes for a brief discussion of the topic before we listen to the recording. For example, if our topic for the day is ‘beauty’ we would be asked questions like ‘What do you think is Beauty?’ or ‘what is the beauty standard in Korea?’ The third question that was asked was `what is more important than beauty and why?’
With that, I prepared my sentences with the expressions I learned from my speaking and writing classes. I think this class is not only for simple listening but also for practicing speaking skills.

After listening to the recording (It’s really hard to understand it by listening to it once so I listened to it four more times), students must answer four questions. The questions asked are found in the workbook. In general, if in Korea the answers are multiple choices, here you have to write brief sentences as answers. You can practice writing what you truly understand instead of simply ending it with the ‘Do you understand?’ phrase. Of course, any grammatical errors and mistakes are corrected by the teacher.

Afterward, the teacher explains the subject and clarifies any unfamiliar words. In each class, corrections are given to mispronounced words and phonetic symbols that are difficult to vocalize.
Then, I make sure to take note of what I understood and what I find difficult pronouncing. We then fill in the blanks with the script and finally have a deep discussion on the subject. Sometimes, the time goes by really fast that the 50-minute class feels very short. After this first unit is finished, we proceed to the second unit.

Do I need to prepare before class?

Although it varies from person to person, I would like to tell you that you are well prepared to discuss the topic and attend the class. Since it’s a listening class, you will simply listen. As it is also a one-on-one class, I think you need to use your time efficiently.
For example, I am most excited about the discussion time with the teacher about the topic. We use the expressions we learned in speaking class and review them automatically. You can think about what you want to express in advance as well. Also, it’s a great advantage because your teacher can correct your mistakes right away!

I don’t think you can understand the recording just by hearing it once.

Correct. The recording is about a minute long and it’s really hard to understand everything at once! It is difficult. In my case, I ask the teacher to repeat the recording until I can understand and give an answer to the question. Don’t worry too much and try to understand and remember the important parts as soon as you hear it!