TOPIC 1: LISTENING TO VARIOUS SIMPLE ORAL TEXTS
Listening is the ability to accurately receive and interpret messages in the communication process. When we learn a language, there are four skills that we need for complete communication. When we learn our native language, we usually learn to listen first, then to speak, then to read, and finally to write. These are called the four "language skills”.
As you can see, listening is the first language skill. It is perhaps the most important skill of all, and forms the basis for the other three. Listening is key for all effective communication; without the ability to listen effectively, messages are easily misunderstood – communication breaks down and the sender of the message can easily become frustrated or irritated. If there is one communication skill you should aim to master, listening is it.
When you are listening to text read by a teacher or anyone else, in order to understand, the following must be done.
1. Figure out the purpose of the text. Activate background knowledge of the topic in order to predict or anticipate content and identify appropriate listening strategies.
2. Attend to the parts of the listening input that are relevant to the identified purpose and ignore the rest. This selectivity enables you as students to focus on specific items in the input and reduces the amount of information you have to hold in short-term memory in order to recognise it.
3. Listen for the main idea.
4. Predict the content.
5. Listen for specific details.
6. Recognise word-order patterns.
7. Check for comprehension while listening and when the listening task is over.
8. Draw a conclusion.
Listen to the following text and answer the questions that follow:
The HIV is Human Immuno-deficiency Virus. It destroys the human immune system. This virus causes AIDS – Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome – an incurable disease. This disease is caused by the virus which prevents the formation of WBCs, White Blood Corpuscles – a constituent of blood which is responsible for immunity. Destroying the WBCs and preventing their formation, natural immunity which fights against diseases, is reduced making the body prone to various diseases.
A person infected with HIV becomes carrier and can infect other persons. This communicable disease is sexually transmitted; it is also passed through body fluid and infected syringes and blood transmission.
This disease has spread rapidly worldwide, especially in poor and developing nations, and poses a serious threat to human existence. Africa, Asia, Latin America and other parts of the world have large populations who are infected with the disease. In2000 about thirty-five million people were infected with HIV, of which about 29 million are in the sub-Saharan region.
African and Asian countries have highest spread of HIV, South Africa being the largest HIV infected land while the largest number of HIV patients are in India . About 3 million people die every year due to HIV/Aids.
No drugs or treatments have been proved effective to cure it, even some primary stage treatments are very costly.
Reasons for its Spread in Poor Countries
1. These countries have most of the population living under poor conditions and lacking proper nutrition, which makes them more prone to the disease.
2. Lack of awareness about preventative steps has resulted in the wide spread of HIV.
3. Some traditions and customs of such countries have led to practices polygamy, multi-partner sex, prostitution, which have spread the disease.
4. No or little policy implementation to create awareness and prevention of the disease in poor countries.
Answer the following questions:
1. What is HIV?
2. How is HIV transmitted?
3. What causes HIV?
4. In Africa which country has the highest number of HIV victims?
5. What are the reasons for the higher spread of HIV in poor countries?