Today we're going to go over my top 5 tips for learning English with movies and TV. Many people successfully learn English this way, and the great thing about it is that you're learning something in context, not isolated like in a vocabulary list. 



And this will really help you remember it. In addition, you're learning from a native speaker, so your pronunciation should be much more accurate than if you're learning from a book if you do it right.



But learning English from movies and TV does NOT happen automatically. Unless you're using the tips I'm about to teach you, you won't be learning as much English as you could.



But if you DO make these tips a part of your regular movie and TV watching habits, you'll have a powerful new learning tool that's always available to you! Now, this is not about relaxing and unwinding watching TV or a movie, this is about learning. It's an active experience, part of your studies.



Let's get started. Tip 1:  Work at your level. If listening comprehension is a big challenge for you, and you want to work on that specifically, start with a simple scene involving just a few people in a quiet environment.

我们开始吧!第一个小技巧: 量力而行,如果听力对你来说比较困难,你想重点锻炼一下,那就从人物较少,相对安静的场景开始。


I really like dramas because I think in general the pace of speaking is a little slower. HER is a great movie for this: slow pace, clear speech. "What's the rush?" That was relatively easy to understand.



If your listening comprehension is very good and you're just looking to pick up new vocabulary or phrases, or you want to challenge your listening comprehension, you can do this by trying a scene in a noisy room, or a scene where people are speaking with a non-standard accent.



"It's that or we both better go do something else, pal." That was likely much harder to understand. So, work at a level that's right for you. One that's not so challenging that you understand almost nothing.



Tip 2:  Use a video player that has the right tools: a toggle for subtitles and a way to easily skip back in the video. Both Netflix and HBO Go have these features, and no they did not pay me to say this. 

第二个小技巧: 选择合适的播放工具,可以通过控制栏调出字幕快进快退那种。Netflix和HBO Go的界面都有这种功能,我不是在帮他们打广告啦!


On YouTube, you can do a search on a topic that interests you, and filter it. so you'll only see videos with a closed captioning file.



But the YouTube player doesn't have a way to easily jump back a few seconds like Netflix or HBO Go, they have a skip back 10 seconds button and I think if you can afford a subscription to one of those services, it's really useful.

不过YouTube视频播放器不太容易快退,不能像Netflix或HBO Go那样退后几秒,那两家有后退十秒的按钮,所以我觉得经济条件允许的话下可以考虑订阅一下,很有帮助。


Let's go on to tip 3 to see why. Tip 3:  Use subtitles and the following method to learn. Step 1 is to listen without the subtitles. When you hear something you don't understand, or a word you don't know and it's okay if that's pretty frequent, pause the player.

我们再来看第三个小技巧告诉你原因,第三个小技巧:善用字幕。跟随以下方法学习,第一步不看字幕裸听。当你听到一 些不懂的内容,或者某个不懂的单词,经常碰到也没关系, 先暂停播放。


Go back 10 seconds and listen again, pause it. Can you figure it out? Write down as much of the sentence as you can in a notebook that you have just for this purpose. Use an app if you like, but I prefer writing by hand.



Then, turn on the English subtitles and go back and listen again. Listen and watch with the subtitles on. Now, maybe the part you didn't get is a brand new word that you've never seen or heard before. Great, this is an awesome way to learn new vocabulary.



Write the word down, look up the definition, and write down the sentence you heard it in. Even write down the show or the movie and the scene. Remembering this context will absolutely help you remember the word. But maybe when you go back and watch with the subtitles you realize you know all those words.



Why didn't you understand it? That's a very important question and answering it is the key to improving your listening comprehension. Perhaps the phrase was said very quickly and there were reductions in there that made it very hard to identify the word.



Or maybe a word has a pronunciation that's completely different than what you thought. Write down the full sentence now and circle the words you didn't understand. Then use the skip back button to listen many times... five, maybe even more.

又或者某个单词的发音与你预想的完全不一样,把整句都写下来圈出没听懂的单词,用快退键反复播放... 重听五次,甚至更多。


Something was pronounced in a way that you were not expecting. Study how the native speaker pronounces it. Importantly, say the phrase out loud yourself a few times, imitating the native speaker as precisely as you can.



Write down the correct pronunciation in your notebook. Maybe even take it a step further: Go to Youglish.com and type the word or phrase you didn't understand. Hear lots of other examples of native speakers using that word or phrase, and pay attention.



Is it reduced? Why was it so hard for you to understand the first time? This kind of work will really pay off. Youglish is a search engine for YouTube videos with English subtitles and you can filter it to American English, and skip from clip to clip.



You can also move forward or backward within a clip to get the full context. It's a great way to supplement your learning. Just like in the movies, I did a quick costume change.



Tip 4:  Review it! If you've taken the time to do the work of watching, pausing, writing down sentences, vocab words, and the context you learned them in, then do yourself a favor and solidify that learning.

第四个小技巧: 复习! 既然你已经花了这么多功夫观看、暂停、做笔记、积累单词、记录语境了,一定要巩固学习成果才对得起自己的努力。


Keep your English in Movies notebook close by so if you have a bit of extra time, waiting for an appointment, or on your commute, or during your lunch break, you can remind yourself what you learned yesterday.



If you learned a new vocabulary word, try to come up with your own sentences for it now. Practice speaking your new words and phrases out loud whenever possible.



And Tip 5:  Set manageable goals for yourself. Don't try to learn 100 new words or phrases a day. That's too many. Make it your goal to really learn 5 or 6. When you learn them in context and review them for seven days, that will get you good results.



Trying to learn too many too often means very little being remembered and leads to burnout. This method I've given you is time-consuming, but it is concrete and you will really learn this way.



If you've gotten 5 or 10 good word or phrases in the first few minutes of a show or movie, reward yourself! Close your notebook and watch the rest for enjoyment and pleasure.

如果你刚看几分钟就学到了5到10个实用词汇或表达,就犒赏自己吧! 合上笔记本,尽情享受接下来的观影体验。


There is a wealth of TV shows and movies that you can use to help you learn English and speak like a native. 



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