Listening is a skill that needs to be learned and utilized well to be able to succeed in any environment. In the classroom, great listening skills spell the difference between a successful student and one who struggles in school. Whatever grade level you are at, try these techniques to improve listening skills in the classroom.
- Come to class rested. Make sure you had a good night’s sleep and had a good breakfast. When your body is well taken cared off, your mental focus will be that much better. If you come to class sleepy, hung over, medicated or tired, it may be impossible for you to keep you eyes open and focus on what the teacher is saying.
- Be prepared. Have everything you need at the start of the class. If you have homework, make sure you are ready to submit it. Bring out your notebook and pen so you can start taking down notes. It’s hard to listen when you are distracted trying to rummage through your bag looking for things to write with or the book you need. Also, try to read your textbooks before coming in to class. If you do a bit of advanced reading, you’ll be able to understand what you teacher is talking about.
- Try to discern the main idea of the lecture before you judge it. When a lecture is going on and on, you must at least be able to derive the point or thesis of the discussion. Determine what the main points of the lecture are about. Avoid judging the material as boring or useless information or else your brain will automatically shut down and refuse to accept more information.
- Avoid distractions. Avoid sitting next to someone who chats during class hours or likes to pass notes. Don’t look out the window, the clock or the door. Try to keep your eyes trained on the professor and on the blackboard. If you let your mind wander, you won’t be able to hear what you need to learn.
- Sit near the professor. When you’re in the front of the class, you’ll have an easier time hearing what the teacher has to say. You’re less likely to daydream and get distracted when the teacher is near you.
- Take down notes. Write down what you hear. When you take notes, it becomes easier to remember what is being discussed. It will also make you concentrate more on what is being said so you can properly take notes.
- Ask questions. Asking questions means you have processed what you have heard. It allows you to clarify things and by saying back what you have heard but using your own words, it shows the teacher that you have understood the concepts taught.
Try to concentrate when you are in glass so you are able to get the gist and other pertinent points during a lecture. Listening is a skill that is constantly being developed. Once you learn techniques to help you with this skill, you should see an improvement in your academic performance.