Watching YouTube videos is a great way to improve your listening skills. It is a great way to hear natural spoken English, get insights into culture, and learn new things. There are an endless variety of topics to choose from while honing your listening skills.
hone: improve or perfect a skill
English Listening Practice
Once you reach a certain level, it becomes helpful to begin using authentic materials to improve your listening skills. Below you’ll find 10 suggestions to choose from, along with the usual vocabulary explanations in context. Some of the videos are funny, some play with language, and at the end you’ll find a bonus one with excellent advice for how to approach language learning.
10 YouTube Videos for Listening Practice
35 Accents in the English Language – He can do a pretty impressive range of accents, can’t he?
accent: the way people in a particular area pronounce words
Rock Paper Scissors, Your Logik Is Not Right – This is by Flula Borg. He is a German actor, comedian, musician, and DJ who does lots of videos making fun of American idioms too. He cracks me up!
to crack someone up: to make someone laugh a lot
You Are Under The Weather? Join The Clubs. – Here’s a video of Flula making fun of an idiom.
to make fun of: mock, tease, make jokes about
Kids Answer “What is the Best Country in the World?” – I like the girl with the tiara best – too funny. You can hear rejoinders, hypotheticals, and many SSNQ’s in this video. Don’t rely on their knowledge of the world or what a country is though!
to rely on: to depend on, to trust or believe
Ellen Meets a 5-Year-Old Geography Expert – Smart and absolutely adorable kid! I bet most people in the world couldn’t do this. You can trust his knowledge of geography!
Jackie Chan and Steve Can’t Understand Each Other – A funny clip about not understanding what someone is saying. Good practice listening to different accents.
Meet Bella The 4 Year Old Polyglot – This 4-year-old speaks 7 languages. Impressive! You’ll also get to learn a little Australian pronunciation on this talk show she’s featured on.
featured on: given special attention or publicity
Pretending To Not Speak Korean (actually fluent)-Prank – These 2 American boys are 9 and 13 and go to an all Korean school. I think this might be my new favorite YouTube channel for listening to Korean.
Maze Runner Actors Try Korean Barbecue and Soju– Idioms, natural expressions, reactions, reductions and lots more in this clip by the Korean Englishman. It has both Korean and English subtitles. You can also hear how British guys and Americans guys use different rejoinders. American guys don’t generally say “lovely” and “beautiful” when reacting. Watching just the first 5:30 is enough to hear all that.
Bonus Video with Excellent Advice!
As I always say, communication is the most important thing. Grammar is not as important. Being afraid of making mistakes and trying to speak perfectly doesn’t help you improve your speaking skills. Mariana Pascal’s TEDx Talk in Penang, Malaysia explains what I try to teach students every semester. What she says is absolutely true to my experience as well. It’s a must-see for all students of English who are trying to overcome their fear and lack of confidence.
Why you should speak English like you’re playing a video game – Mariana Pascal’s TEDx Talk provides an excellent analogy. It is spot on. It is advice worth listening to and following.
spot on: exactly correct or accurate
Want more English listening practice?
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If you want to learn more about how to improve your English listening, I recommend reading How to improve your English listening for tips. It also offers an English listening course with 45 lessons by Shayna of Espresso English.
My Ko-fi shop has a variety of downloadable audio available. I’m currently working on conversations between two people, which will include transcripts and explanations of vocabulary in each download.
You can also find a lot of materials right here on this website in my listening archives. You might also like to check out Espresso English’s listening archives.
check out: to look at something of interest
Here are more Video Clips for Fun and Improving English, including some scenes from TV sitcoms to help you improve your English listening.
Never stop learning!