Get our tips on how to use Listenwise's multimodal lessons to teach listening skills to ESL/ELL students. Perfect for English learners at all levels.
Address Speaking and Listening Standards
According to Yilmaz & Yavuz (2015), there are several difficulties in listening comprehension that teachers can help students with.

Address Speaking and Listening Standards Using Listenwise

According to Yilmaz & Yavuz (2015), there are several difficulties in listening comprehension that teachers can help students with.

Another school year is underway, and you’re doing whatever it takes to meet your students where they are. It’s your responsibility to help them meet speaking and listening standards. But the reality is that you only have a short amount of time to actually do it. 

No matter what your focus area is—whether you’re an elementary school teacher or a subject area teacher at the middle school or high school level—it’s imperative that your students develop solid listening skills. After all, reading, writing, listening, and speaking are crucial to success in all subject areas. 

We hear from many teachers— particularly those with English learners in their classrooms— that finding rigorous material that aligns with speaking and listening standards can be challenging. Research shows that oral proficiency will not increase without opportunities to practice speaking using academic language. Broadening students’ academic vocabulary promotes deeper understanding of curriculum content, as the specificity of language helps to clarify and differentiate meaning. English learners need to hear academic language in the context of authentic speech, and they need to practice speaking using academic language. 


“I believe that students’ listening and speaking skills were seriously impacted by the pandemic and school closures. Listenwise is a great way to get students back up to grade level with weekly practice.”

– Elementary teacher, CA

Teach Speaking and Listening Standards Using Listenwise

Our comprehensive library of thousands of podcast and video lessons for students in grades 2 through 12 includes thousands of short podcasts specifically geared to an elementary, secondary, and ELD audience. Every lesson is a great opportunity for students to practice the skills needed to meet speaking and listening standards

Watch Stanford’s Dr. Jeff Zwiers and author Monica Brady-Myerov share speaking and listening standards-aligned teaching strategies to help English learners acquire academic vocabulary using podcasts.


Listenwise podcasts go hand-in-hand with the content you’re already delivering—allowing you to integrate your classroom instruction quickly and easily into the lessons they provide. They’re also aligned with both grade-level and ELD standards for English learners which means that all of your students are able to further develop the 4 Key Language Uses as identified by WIDA.

Plus, our lessons give students access to the 5 research-based listening skills exercises that are proven to help all learners. Designed to meet the rigor expected for each grade level, the lessons created by Listenwise use podcast, video, and visual formats to engage your students on multiple levels. They also reach across content areas and target key features of language development such as decoding and academic vocabulary.


“We’re so glad to have discovered Listenwise. There are tons of short, fun and engaging podcasts for students to listen to. Listening is one of the most overlooked skills. Students learn a lot when they are listening while reading a transcript. They can learn about fluency, proper pronunciation, intonation, etc.”

– District Instructional Specialist, TX

Speaking and listening standards sign up

Tips for Using Listenwise to Practice Speaking and Listening

We recommend using sketch notes as a pre-listening or first listen activity. By incorporating note-taking and group discussions in your classroom, you can ensure that students are developing good study habits that will build their dependence on tools, not on their teacher. This is an especially critical distinction to make when teaching English learners.

Don’t be afraid to get creative! Many graphic organizers work well for this kind of note taking assignment and you can go over them together as a class, having students add interesting facts to their own notes that their peers came up with. Moreover, many online tech tools can be app-smashed with Listenwise to allow students to orally respond to the lesson they just completed so that they can practice speaking.

Get more strategies on how to support multilingual students using podcasts and video from our recent webinar with career teacher, consultant, and author Tan K Huynh.



Not only are Listenwise lessons an incredible way to increase your students’ access to interesting and high-quality audio in the classroom, they’re also a way to ensure an equitable education for all.


“Listenwise provides students with high interest and relevant content that allows them to practice listening and responding in a low stakes environment. The content is international and works in newcomer and ELD classes to heighten student’s listening abilities.”

– High School ELD/ELA teacher, CA


In a world that is becoming more digitally inclined all the time, taking advantage of high-quality virtual learning opportunities is of far more benefit to your students than having them listen to a recording you play over your own speakers. Seeing the visuals right in front of their eyes, listening to expert speakers lead a discussion, following along with a transcript, and having the chance to make notes or practice speaking with their peers provides your students with a rich learning experience.

Ready for your students to become expert readers, writers, listeners, and speakers? Check out how our listening comprehension platform can help.

Listening comprehension tests sign up