Listening for details is an important skill to practice because it will help you improve your listening comprehension. To do this close listening, you have to concentrate and trv not to miss any part of what a speaker is saving.
Look at this representation of part of Roberts family tree and then read the questions that follow it.
1 Where did Robert’s parents and grandparents live?
a in the same house b in the same neighborhood
2 What kind of family did Robert grow up in?
a a nuclear family b an extended family
3 What was Robert’s father’s attitude toward him?
a He was very protective. b He encouraged him to live his own
4 When did Robert have a problem with his family?
a when he was in his early teens b when he went to college
5 How important were the other children in the neighborhood to Robert?
a extremely important b not very important
6 Where did Robert and his cousins often play?
a on the block where they lived b in the basement of their house
7 How did Robert’s parents feel about his grandparents’ values?
a They rebelled against them. b They shared them.
8 How much does Robert feel that families today have changed?
a He thinks they have changed a lot. b He does not think they have changed
9 What does Robert believe is the most important characteristic of a family?
a the fact that people are blood relatives b the fact that people love each other
Now listen to the interview with Robert and circle the correct answer to each I question.
3 Compare your answers with a partner.
INTERVIEW WITH CARLOS: Growing up in a single-parent family
Here are some words and phrases from the interview with Carlos printed in bold and given in the context in which you will hear them. They arc followed by definitions.
That industry is seasonal: the amount of work varies from one season to the next There was a good stretch when 1 was in junior high school: a long period of time We’d just play stickball, and marbles, and yo-yos: children’s games I remember being taught to pick up after myself: clean up, put things away I remember running errands: being sent out to buy something
It’s important that you get moral instruction: teaching about what is right and wrong an anchor in your life: someone or something that keeps you focused on your goals School was very influential in my life: had an important effect