Listening and Responding Across Subject Areas

Students listen to and discuss informational audio presentations.


S&L6: Make strategic use of digital media and visual displays of data to express information and enhance understanding of presentations.


Estimated timeframe:

Activity steps

  1. Use the site Listenwise opens in a new window ( to help students practice listening for information and discussing nonfiction texts. You may need to create a free teacher account. Select a topic and select a discussion question or prompt to use with students. Many of the passages on the site connect to current events, social studies, science, and English language arts subject areas.
  2. Have students review the questions before listening to set a purpose and focus for listening.
  3. Play the audio file. (Depending on the topic and questions selected, you may want to hold an informal or a more formal discussion; let the students know whether to respond in an informal or formal manner.) Have students share and discuss their responses as a class. Variations:
    • Have students discuss the questions with a partner before beginning whole class discussion.
    • Have students work in pairs with each pair at their own computer. This variation allows you to assign lower or higher level passages depending on students’ skill levels and interests. (Students can also work independently to practice listening skills.)
  4. Use a rubric such as this one from New Hampshire to evaluate students’ speaking and listening skills:opens in a new window

Workforce readiness skills

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ELA Activities for Level C / D / E
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