English learners are lucky, because nowadays there are zillions of resources to learn English, even without spending a penny!
Basic Ideas to Become an Effective Learner, by michelle (2007)
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Practice makes the master. The more you listen to English, the less afraid you will be of the language, the more confident you will grow to be, and the more effective you will be as a user/learner. You need to use and maximize the use of all the resources you have at hand. And remember: There is no way of improving without practicing.
As a student coming to class, you need to buy a textbook and its audios (crucial). As a life-long learner you can use all the textbooks and audios you already have! Use the SAME material in VARIOUS ways (this is, several times! Repetition, frequent use is at the root of effective learning). Then you can buy new audios and printed materials from shops or second-hand sales.
Exploit audio and audiovisual technology. TV, radio, videos, tapes, CDs. Every day you should listen to English a minimum of 10 minutes (and that's really little, but at least it is SOMETHING!). Then every week you have to work on your listening and speaking skills at least in two sittings. Listen AND WORK on your listening: with songs, TV series, parts of films, documentaries, the news, ads, websites with audio docs in English (see link below) and REPEAT and then jot down the sentences you’ve understood. As you repeat this exercise YOU WILL REALIZE the second day you understood some more sentences than the first. Exploit that text till you feel confident while listening to it.
On the Internet you will find zillions of FREE resources, and even if you have no access to the Internet, you can use the Internet for free at local libraries, cultural associations and educational bodies. One of the most exciting developments on the Internet for English learners is Podcasts. Subscribe to a free podcasts, so you make sure you will listen to English every day!
Your personal likes. Apart from your courses or reasons for learning English, choose something you really like, personally. Make a trip, or get yourself a present: please, check out the Audio and Library sections here for ideas to get any audio/audiovisual material you may like!
Talk to people/Outings. If you can't travel, there are tons of places in Madrid where you can meet foreigners -- Movie theatres/Cinemas, theaters, excursions, cultural centers, museums, pubs... You can even go to the airport to interview them! Check out the TP Forum - the subforum including Outings, because there is information on activities and places where you can use your English in Madrid. (Go with a friend the first day, for security! Better still, organize an outing with the people in class.)
Make your own audio CD, or use your teacher's. Your Teacher's CDs: news, interviews, poems, short stories, useful language from free podcasts and recording by your teacher. Check out YT's support CDs, ask in class.
Make Your Classmates Suffer! Project: designing exams or a Worksheet for a listening activity to do in class is an excellent way to practice with audios. Check out the ones other students designed at Your Stuff! (left-side navigation bar)
Ideas on Equipment you can use to listen to English