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Listening Skills for Primary School

by Bill Reynolds, studioD

Good listening skills are crucial to the academic and social development of children. In order to succeed in future academic pursuits, primary school students must be able to listen to and comprehend their teacher’s instructions. Like anything else, listening skills can be improved with practice. Various games and activities are available that can help your primary school students sharpen their listening skills.

Use a Song

Playing a song in class can help capture your primary school students’ imaginations and can also help develop and sharpen their listening skills. Use fun, educational songs that focus on young characters your children can relate to. When possible, use props to help your students make connections and find meaning in the words of the song. For instance, if the song pertains to a football player, you might consider donning a football helmet and pantomiming some of the events covered in the song.

Play Simon Says

Help your students practice their listening skills by playing the classic listening game Simon Says. Simon Says requires players to listen closely to the speaker’s directions to avoid being “out,” so this game can help sharpen primary school children’s concentration and listening skills. The children will have to learn to pay close attention to subtle details in order to avoid being the first ones eliminated.

Play “List” Games

Tell your primary school students that you’re about to read a list of six words and that they need to try their best to remember each one. Tell them they’ll need to focus all their brainpower on each word because you’ll ask them later to repeat the whole list. Use simple words at first, like “horse,” “cow” and “car.” Read your list slowly, so your students have a good chance to focus on each word. When you’re done, call on volunteers to attempt recreating the list from memory. If the first list proves too easy, make the second one more difficult.

Read Stories and Ask Questions

Asking your primary school students questions about a story’s character and plot can be an effective way to boost students’ listening skills, especially if you warn them ahead of time. If the children know they’ll be expected to remember specific names, places and events from a given story, they’ll focus more energy into listening to the words. Knowing that they’re responsible for remembering the information, your children will challenge themselves to be better listeners.

About the Author

Bill Reynolds holds a Bachelor's degree in Communications from Rowan University. He has written hundreds of articles for print and online media, drawing inspiration from a wide range of professional experiences. As part of the UCLA Extension Writer's Program, he has been nominated for the James Kirkwood Prize for Creative Writing.

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