Learn English Online with English Outside the Box 31 Daily Lessons to Improve English Listening Fluency

October Learning Plan: 31 Daily English Lessons – Week 2 Listening

Take a minute to think about all of the situations you need listening skills [in English] in your life. You need these skills for entertainment, like listening to music and watching TV/movies. You’ll need listening skills to live abroad in an English speaking country, like when you go to the local shops, when you need to call someone on the phone, etc.. If you have friends who don’t speak your native language, you’ll also want to communicate with them, which of course, requires listening skills. If you are studying English for business purposes, then you will absolutely need these skills to be successful with your boss, colleagues, in meetings, etc..

So listening skills are incredibly important. We can agree on that, right?

Luckily, week 2 has arrived of your October Learning plan, and we’re focusing on listening skills so you can improve English listening fluency. By the end of this lesson you’ll have several different resources for you to continue using to practice your listening skills daily, you’ll receive tips and advice, and if you apply all of your effort, you’ll feel more confident than before by the time Monday comes around.

If you are just joining the October Learning Plan party (yes, it’s as fun as a party!), it’s not too late to access week 1 and improve your vocabulary, you can click on the full curriculum image below or here to get the full English lesson for week 1: vocabulary.

31 Daily Lessons to Improve English Fluency: Learn English online with English Outside the Box


Let’s get right into it if you’re ready to start week 2.  In this week’s 5 Minute English video, you’ll get a chance to practice listening comprehension and hear about some of this week’s lessons. Continue reading for the necessary links, resources, and further explanations of your daily activities.

Week 2: Listening Fluency

1 Daily lessons to Improve English Fluency | Learn English Online with English Outside the Box | Listening

Day 1: October 11

5 Tips for Using Podcasts to Improve English Skills

(click the title above [in yellow] to read the full lesson)

I am sure you already know about using TV/movies and YouTube to improve your listening skills. However, are you using podcasts? Do you use what a podcast is? A podcast is a downloadable audio file that you can access on your computer, phone, iPad, or laptap. This makes these audio files so convenient to learn on the go if you are busy and always on the go (*moving from one place to another*). I am going to be sharing a few podcasts with you this week, so I want to make sure you know how to use podcasts to improve your English.

It is so important to do more than just listen, this is passive learning. I want you to learn how to actively use podcasts, how to engage with them, and how to maximize their benefits. Today’s lesson teaches you how you can learn listening skills (of course), in addition to vocabulary, grammar, speaking and pronunciation (YES!), reading, and writing!

Watch and read today’s video + blog lesson by clicking the title above, “5 Tips for Using Podcasts to Improve English Skills.”

Day 2: October 12

Leo-Listening: The Glasgow Nickname Game

(click the title above [in yellow] to read the full lesson)

Connect with Cara from Leo Listening today, and listen to her podcast. This podcast will help you with fast, natural English and includes pre and post listening practice activities. Cara also recommends to get the transcript for the episode and listen along.

This lesson will introduce you to a different accent than what you heard in my video (or what you hear every week with me), teach you about Scottish culture, and give you real, authentic English practice. Visit her article (click the title above) for today’s full lesson!

Day 3: October 13

Improve your English Skills with Music

(click the title above [in yellow] to read the full lesson)

How are you currently using music in your English studying routine? Playing it in the background while you work, drive, or travel is a great way to get some passive practice; however, there is so much more you can do! Actively using music to further develop your English skills can improve your writing, reading, vocabulary, and even your speaking and pronunciation abilities!

Today’s lesson will show you how to improve all of the skills mentioned above, and includes a practice activity to practice and check your listening comprehension skills. Additionally, at the end of the lesson, you’ll see a bonus website! So what are you waiting for? Day 3’s lesson is waiting for you, and you can access it by clicking the link above, “Improve your English Skills with Music.”

Day 4: October 14

English Across the Pond: 10 Tips to Nail your Job Interview

(click the title above [in yellow] to read the full lesson)

Another day, another podcast! English Across the Pond gives you the opportunity to hear a real conversation between two native speakers, me (Jennifer from America) and Dan from England! You’ll get to practice with American and British accents, and best of all, practice listening to a natural dialogue as you hear it in movies, TV, and on the streets in everyday situations.

Each episode comes with an episode guide with vocabulary, definitions, examples, the conversation question topics, and a language focus. One of the best things you can learn from this podcast is how to ask questions, and how to maintain a conversation.

Your challenge today is to listen to the conversation and write down all of the tips you hear Dan and I talking about in this episode for being successful at a job interview. How many are you able to hear and understand? When you finish listening and taking notes, download the episode guide to check your comprehension!

Day 5: October 15

Dictation Practice: Listen and Write what you Hear

So far this week, you’ve listened to podcasts and used music to train your listening skills. You have had some note-taking practice, which allows you to check your understanding; however, today I want you to have more of this practice. Dictation is the act of speaking words (saying words out loud) that a person (or machine) writes down. Today, your job is to be the writer. I am going to give you a few things to listen to and I want you to write down what you hear. There will be pronunciation principles (like word reductions or linking) that you have to know, as well as grammar points (contractions) and some vocabulary. This is also a great way to practice spelling! 

Let’s start with a couple of Instagram videos. First you need to get out a piece of paper and write down what you hear! You can also write this information in the comment section of this blog – or on the Instagram posts.





3) Check out this YouTube channel for daily dictation practice. What do you hear in this video?

Check out the answers for all of these challenges below (at the bottom of the post)!

Day 6: October 16

How Listening to Podcasts can Help you to Improve your English

(click the title above [in yellow] to read the full lesson)

Finding non-ESL podcasts to improve your listening skills

Connect with Kirsty and her podcast (episode #57) from English with Kirsty today. Kirsty’s tip for this lesson:

“Podcasts are a great way for you to improve your language skills. In this post and podcast episode, I explain how they can help you. After you’ve read the post/listened to the podcast episode, try to find one or two podcasts about subjects that interest you and set aside some time to listen to them every week. You may also want to keep a diary of what you’ve learned.”

This lesson will help you with listening comprehension, as well as give you ideas and tips for even more learning. Click the title above and start your lesson now!

Day 7: October 17

Listening Comprehension Practice: TEDed Lessons

(click the title above [in yellow] to read the full lesson)

TEDed videos and TED-Ed originals are videos created to teach and inspire. According to their website, their award winning videos are “about ideas that spark the curiosity of learners everywhere“. The information they give and teach is interesting, their messages are motivational, and they’ll help you improve your listening skills. It sounds like a triple win to me!

TedEd lessons are created by teachers around the world, using various video resources, and include comprehension questions, “think deeper” discussion options, and more. Today’s lesson is about cultural differences, and includes multiple choice and short answer questions, as well as vocabulary you can learn from the video. These questions will check your ability to listen and understand what you hear. The link is above, just click the yellow text under day 7 to get started with today’s lesson and your final lesson for the week.

Feel free to explore the other lessons as well, the learning never has to stop here!

And, can you believe it? That wraps up (*finishes*) another week of your October Learning Plan. You’re already halfway there!  If you have any questions or comments about the lessons this week, don’t be shy! Please let me know in the comment section below. Feel free to write some of your practice sentences, too. As you know, practice makes perfect!

About the Guest Authors:



Cara Leopold is an online listening teacher, helping upper-intermediate to advanced learners finally understand spoken English, particularly the informal conversational kind, no matter the accents involved. Join the Leo Listening list for listening tips and the transcript of the latest episode of Cara’s fast, natural English podcast straight to your inbox. Get daily listening practice on Instagram.


Kirsty is an online English trainer, podcaster and language blogger. Through a range of personalised training and language courses, Kirsty helps people who want to improve their English so that they can communicate more confidently and effectively at work. You can find out more about Kirsty on her website: www.englishwithkirsty.com

Did you enjoy this week’s October Learning Plan activities and lessons? Please share this lesson with a friend or a colleague!

You can still access Week 1 here, and come back next week for week 3!

Happy Studying ♥


*Dictation Answers from Day 5 –  1) “When did you tell her you could meet her?”  2) “I had coffee this morning, but I should have got a cup of tea.”  3) Click here for the video answer/explanation
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