Story Listening

Many language teachers get a bit confused by all those names with 'story' in them. It's also all very similar: Storytelling, Storyasking, Story Listening... and it's all about understandable input. What exactly is the difference? We would be happy to guide you. Below is a brief explanation of Story Listening, one of the newest approaches to language teaching through understandable input.

Story Listening (SL) is based on current research and theory of language acquisition and literacy development (Krashen, 2003, 2004) and is used to provide students with rich, compelling, comprehensive language input. It uses a variety of ways of making stories comprehensible for those acquiring the language, including drawings, occasional and brief translation, simple explanations, and synonyms presented in conversational language.  

 

Story-listening primarily uses folktales, stories of universal interest, from around the world which can be downloaded free of charge. Story-listening has been consistently shown to be more efficient (more acquired per unit time) than traditional approaches to vocabulary acquisition (see studies posed at  beniko-mason.net ): time is better spent on listening to stories than doing vocabulary exercises.

 

Story listening provides a natural bridge to reading and can be used for with students of all ages, and from beginning to advanced levels.  The combination of story listening and interesting comprehensible reading has been shown to have powerful effects on language achievement (studies at  beniko-mason.net ).

 

Claire Walter has founded a beautifully designed platform where stories can be exchanged: Storiesfirst.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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There are also good ones on this site  examples  from Story-Listening lessons, with an extensive analysis of the techniques used in those lessons to make the input understandable while ensuring a rich language offer. In the video below you can see Beniko Mason teaching an English lesson to intermediate English students in Japan:

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Alice Ayel has on  her YouTube channel  many Storylistening-like lessons, which have inspired many teachers and students:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

dr. It is important to Mason that we state that Story Listening is a complete method, which is most effective when followed without supplementing other methods, teaching methods and instruction. This is in line with the theory that comprehensible input is the only ingredient by which language enters our brain in the right (namely: unconscious) way.

In practice, it turns out that teachers often combine Story-Listening lessons with TPRS or other teaching methods. We believe that every CI language teacher should be able to make his or her own choice, and therefore offer a wide choice of teaching methods that meet the comprehensible input criterion.

Stories First