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Monday, February 13, 2012

Hearing vs. Understanding

What my students hear compared to what they understand is often completely different. Some students listen very well and try to understand and comprehend what I say. Other student's don't really care and perhaps make up dialogue in their head like I do when Koreans talk. This is how today's conversation in a class of 13 third grade boys.

What I said:
Me: "Where do kangaroos live?"
One Boy: "Australia!"
Me: "Yes! Good job! Kangaroos live in Australia."

What they heard:

Me: "Please impress me and shout out all of the names of countries you know in English!"
One Boy: Australia!"
Twelve other boys: "USA! France! England! Spain! Hawaii! Uzbekistan! (really...) Africa! Canada! Saudi Arabia! Palau! Ghana! China! Korea! Japan! India! Brazil!

And I stand back and wait for five minutes until they've gotten all of the countries out of their system. I don't even feel the need to correctly inform them that Hawaii isn't even a country. Neither is Africa.

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