Can you learn English by watching videos?

Can you learn English by watching videos?

Apart from traditional learning methods, in this modern world, the advent of electronic devices has made it much easier for people to absorb new knowledge as well as to learn new skills. The availability and accessibility of different media have greatly assisted English learners in the process of strengthening their English skills. Nowadays, learning English by watching fun, engaging and informative English videos created by reliable educational institutions is more of a norm in many learning settings. This is because of the fact that using videos is a convenient and fast way to help students gain a better understanding of what is being said. To illustrate the importance and effectiveness that tutorial videos bring to learners, especially youngsters when they practice English, here are a few noteworthy advantages:

  1. Watching videos makes children become familiar with different accents, and this improves their understanding of each English word when they use or hear it in real-life conversations.
  2. Observing facial expressions and body gestures of characters appearing in videos may help to sharpen young learners’ ability to communicate with other people.
  3. Building up children’s understanding of the outside world and helping them to better adapt to situations in their daily lives.

It is undeniable that the pervasiveness of English videos has offered students of all ages, particularly young learners a lot of content, ranging from culture, history, or education, to name but just a few. However, the prevalence of such videos also begs the question: How can parents help their children to learn and improve their English skills by watching these English-related videos? 

  •  Be selective when it comes to choosing what to let your children watch:

As their cognition is still developing, it is much wiser to select short videos or series/episodes of a specific topic. In this way, your children will have a chance to get to know the characters and to familiarize themselves with how they talk. Also, it is very important to consider using videos that can meet these requirements:

        Sound and picture of high quality.

        Words spoken by characters should be repetitive.

        The speech flow should not be too slow or too fast.

        Good visuals that are able to illustrate what the content shows.

  •  Start letting your children watch videos without subtitles:

This may be a challenging process at first, and you will have to make sure to be supportive

to get your children engaged in this type of activity. There are 3 small steps that you can take:

  1. Let your children watch a video in their first language so they can get to know the way each character speaks.
  2. Let your children watch the video again but with English subtitles.
  3. Let your children watch the video without subtitles.

 Setting up pre-watching activities

These activities are to prepare your children for the English videos that they are going to hear. If they prepare well in advance, they will have a better understanding of the content. Ask your children simple questions such as: “What are the characters in this video going to do?”, “Can you describe the characters for me?” … Otherwise, it is also useful to use other ways. For example, you could try:

  • Think of a few words that may appear in the videos together with your child.
  • Share some background information about the videos to make your children interested in what they are going to watch.

In a nutshell, the answer to the most frequently asked question: “Can you learn English by watching videos” is “Yes”. Having said that, it depends on the types of videos as well as other pre-watching activities. To children, the practice of studying English should always be exciting and fun. Therefore, apart from teachers, each parent should be responsible for the practice of English for their child.