Here is something a bit different for you – a cloze, or gap, test.
The idea is to listen to the speech and fill in the gaps with one or more words that are grammatically correct and match the content and style of the piece.
This is a good exercise for many reasons:
- it helps you with anticipation. You won’t be able to fill in every gap before hearing the following few words, but some of them can be guessed immediately because they’re part of a collocation, set phrase, or idiom, or because they make sense in context.
- it helps you work on reformulation: some of the gaps have many possible solutions. How many can you think of?
- it’s a good listening exercise. You need to concentrate really hard to follow the speech’s thread, so that you can fill in the blanks.
- it’s a good reminder that we work at the level of ideas, not words. Imagine if you were interpreting the speech from English into your A language: you could make a good guess at the missing words; so if they were unknown words, you would still be able to follow the meaning in most cases.
Audio file – Islamic art
This is quite a challenging text. You will need to draw on your background knowledge and logic, as well as your English skills, to fill in the blanks successfully.
You can find the recording here.
I won’t go through every blank, but I thought it might be useful to discuss a few of the blanks where there were several possible solutions.
Here’s the transcript of the speech. I have highlighted the missing words in bold.
I hope you enjoyed this exercise!