Hidden Word Listening Exercises

What are Hidden Word exercises?

Hidden word exercises are multiple-choice exercises designed to help you listen to fluent spoken English. In particular, they will help you to notice the little words that are often spoken very quickly and quietly in fast speech.

How do they work?

You hear a sentence or short text, and can listen as often as you like.

You see four words; only one of the four words was used in the sentence. Choose that word and click on it. If you are right you see the whole sentence with the word you chose highlighted.

What if you are wrong? The other three words are all similar to sound sequences in the original sentence. If you did not understand the whole sentence, you may have thought that you "heard" one of these words. If you click on one, you will see the actual words that were spoken, and now you can try again to find the correct word.

The exercise will be very easy if you understand the meaning of what you hear. If you understand the whole sentence, you will be able to "see it" in your mind and can pick out the right word of the four. If, however, you did not understand the sentence completely, or if the whole sentence was a blur of sound, then you will have heard the sounds of all four words and will have to make a guess.

If you have guessed wrong, listen to the sentence and try to work out why it was difficult. Was it because there was an important word which was new to you? Or was it because you did not recognise some short common words when they were spoken quickly and run together?

An example

Take this sentence:
I wouldn't do that if I were you.

In the real exercise you will not be able to read the sentence, but you can listen to it by clicking the Play button below:

You also see these four words:

The word you occurred in the sentence. If you click on it you will see:

CORRECT: I wouldn't do that if I were you.
If you click on the other words you will get feedback like this:
woodNO: ... wouldn't ...
tiffNO: ... that if ...
fireNO: ... if I were ...
Now try the exercises. There are about ten sentences in each exercise. Have fun.