When you are talking to an English speaker, it’s a good idea to show that you are listening and are interested in what the other person has to say. Think about it — would you be motivated to keep talking if the other looked at you with a stony face and didn’t say a word? Here are several ways to engage in active listening:
Use tag questions. Tag questions use helping verbs like do/does/did/have or forms of the verb «to be». To use tag questions to keep the conversation going, use the same tense/form that your partner is using and stress the verb. Here are some examples:
— I really like jazz.
— Do you? I love jazz too and I listen to Miles Davis all the time!
— My husband is a rocket scientist.
— Oh, is he? That’s so interesting!
— I’ve never heard of the movie «Interstellar».
— Haven’t you? It’s really good, you should watch it!
Use follow-up questions to keep the conversation going. Questions you can ask will depend on what your partner is saying but they can be something like this: «And then what happened?».
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