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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: How to use W5 questions for more interesting conversations

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Hello, I'm David Beckham.

No, I'm not. I'm James. This is engVid. This is David Beckham.

But you might be thinking right now some interesting questions, as to: Why did I say I was David

Beckham instead of James as normal? Well, I wanted to get your attention, I wanted to

start a conversation. And a lot of times we do this through asking questions. This lesson

is about how to change your questions, because many people learning English like to ask questions

with the answer "Yes" and "No", and frankly, it's quite boring. It puts me to sleep. Okay?

So I'm going to teach you in this lesson how to use W5 questions in order to make a conversation

much more interesting, to learn more about the person, and they can learn about you.

And when I'm done with you, you're going to be an excellent conversationalist. That's

a person who is good at making people like them. Are you ready? Let's go to the board.

Here's E. "Boring. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Yes and no." Do you think the weather

is nice? Yes/no. Do you like your food? Yes/no. Blah, blah, blah. These lead to questions

in which people answer "Yes", and you are forced to continually ask questions, and it

sounds more like you're being interviewed, like a police interview:

-"Where were you at last dah-dah-dah?" -"Oh my gosh!" And then there's these colourful ones. See these nice

little balls, all happy and nice? These are W5 questions, because not only are you asking

a question, you're asking about me and asking for my opinion and I want to give it to you,

which means I'll talk to you longer and you'll get the opportunity to become a better listener

and speaker. All right? Let's go to the board.

Okay, first things first: "W5 Questions for More Interesting Conversations". What is W5?

Because I've said it about five times, and some of you will know right off, and some

of you are going: "I don't understand." W5 are information questions. They... These are

the things that we use in English to get information, so you cannot say "Yes" or "No" to these things,

you actually have to explain. And by explaining, you give more information which makes it much

more interesting for me, the listener, and for you, as the speaker, because you get to

explain yourself.

W5, we start off with: "Who?" These are the people. Who are you speaking to? Who are you

speaking about? People and persons. Okay? "When?" This is the time. What time did it

happen? 12 o'clock, February, 2001. September 11th, ring a bell, anyone? Makes a difference.

Okay? "Where?" This is the location. Where did it take place? In my house, at work, in

Ireland, in Jamaica, in Japan. "Where?" changes everything. Right?

"Why?" What is the reason

that we're having this conversation? Why did you do it? People have reasons, and if you

ask them, it's amazing what they'll tell you. Most of the times we look for "Yes" or "No"

because we want information, but the reason behind somebody did it might explain why the

"Yes" or the "No" much clearer to you, and sometimes to them, actually. And: "What?"

What are we talking about? What is the subject of the conversation? It's not always about

people. It could be about money, health, politics. "What?" is important to us. All right? The

subject of the conversation.

And here's one in orange, because it's not really "W"; w, w, w, w. Maybe at the end,

but: "How?" "How?" is really useful. I put there is W5, because it's the method. How

did you get there? Like, tell me the steps that you got there. Not your reason, but the

way that you did it. Okay? So, why did I go to Japan? Because I love the country, I love

the people. How did I get there? By airplane, and then by boat because I wanted to go to

Okinawa. That changes the story. Okay?

So, if we put these together... And you're going to ask in a second: "What do you mean?"

because I've told you we're going to be great conversationalists, we'll go through a sample

conversation in a second. Here's this. Okay? These are often used in English writing. That's

why I'm giving it to you now, because we use it in writing because, in writing, you're

speaking when you write, but there's... You don't know your audience. So, a lot of people

use these things in their writing to actually get to know who their audience is and maybe

make it much more interesting for a person that they don't know who's going to read their

work later on.

So, why don't we take this idea-okay?-and use it? Because it will help make our topic

clear-okay?-when we're speaking to somebody. It will help finding out who our audience

will be, not just who we're speaking to, but who it might be in the future or who we should

be speaking to. Okay? And what method we should use in speaking to someone that will get the

best result, because by using these questions, people give us the information we need to

make the conversation for them. And once it's interesting for them, trust me, it'll be interesting

for you. You'll get a lot of conversations.

Okay, so as I said here: "Do this in conversation and it will be amazing!" So, why don't we

have a sample conversation now to give you an example of how to use W5, because I know

you've heard many people say it before, but why don't we show you how to use it and see

how you can actually change dull, boring, mundane-these all were words that say non-interesting,

okay?-conversation into one that's exciting and interesting. Are you ready? Let's go.


Okay, so we talk about colour, making conversation colourful through W5 questions. You noticed

here, it was black and white and boring, you don't even know, it's just: "blah, blah, blah",

and all of this colourful stuff here brings your eye, just like it brings the attention.

It's not that conversation is all about you, but when you need to practice it, you do need

people to speak to you so you can work on your listening skills and your ability to

get your information to other people. Right? Let's go to the board. Actually, I'll go on this side.

Now, if you notice, soon as I moved away, you probably saw this here, but then your

eye went down there because it was so much colour. Let's look at the type of questions

that we're asking, and you'll understand why this is in colour and more interesting to

you than this. Let's change the conversation.

Here's a simple conversation of three sentences. I walk up and say to you:

"Hey. Do you celebrate Christmas?" You're going to say: "Yes" or "No".

Conversation is done. So, I have to

say again: "Okay. Well, do you celebrate it, if you do, on December 25th?"

because there's actually an Orthodox Christmas that's in January or February, I can't remember, but it's a

different time, so you might have to say: "Yes" or "No". Once again, the conversation

is dead. And to bring it alive, I'm going to say: "Hey. Do you buy present"-[laughs]-"presents

at Christmas?" You know, do you provide presents for your family and friends? Some people do

and some people don't, depending on their religion. And so, once again, the answer is:

"Yes" or "No". This is a terribly boring conversation, and I don't want to keep asking 50 questions

just to have you go: "Yeah. No. Maybe. Yeah."

Let's make it interesting. The same type of question with a W5:

"How do you celebrate Christmas?" What?

Maybe I go: "Well, I don't cele..." Now, notice I didn't say: "Yes" or

"No", I go: "Well, no, I don't celebrate Christmas." I actually have to answer your:

"Do you celebrate Christmas?" I go: "No, I don't celebrate it." And I might say: -"No? Why is that?"

-"Well, in my country, we don't have Christianity. We have a Shinto religion, and", dah-dah-dah.

Now I'm learning about you through asking a question, and within one simple question,

I've got you giving me maybe five, six, seven sentences which will help me to find out other

questions to ask to get more information. Because once I'm talking to you and I have

some knowledge on you, we can have an exchange, and that's what we want. Remember, we talked

at the beginning? The whole point of learning this is that, at the end, you'll be able to

learn to listen better to people, and actually be able to give information, but to exchange

it so we can learn and make you a very good conversationalist. And within this one question,

we can see the difference, because this leads down to these quite quickly, here.

But we can even go further. Right? "What kind of things do you celebrate?" Because maybe

we're here... Remember, here, they said: "We don't celebrate Christmas." Then you say:

-"Hey. What kind of things do you celebrate?" -"Huh? Well, you know, like birthdays, weddings,

anniversaries. I don't know. What do you celebrate? Easter." Wow, now they get to tell you about

their culture, their history, and you could say:

"And why do you celebrate them? Is it for religious reasons? Is it a national holiday? Is it just your family likes doing it? Why?"

Now you got people kind of like: "Well..." and you're talking about something personal.

Look, it's the same three questions. The difference is: This is going to take two minutes, this

is going to take an hour, and you get to practice that which you want, which is get better at

your English. Okay? Hey, you might also make a new friend. I forgot that part. Okay. [Laughs]

And finally: "When do you get together with others?" Because maybe someone says:

"Look, this celebration thing, you're driving me crazy. I don't celebrate." Then you can easily

say: "So, when do you get together with your family or your friends?" And they might say:

"Well, you know what? Once a week we get together and we play a board game just so we can talk

and find out what's going on with ourselves, you know, each other." And:

-"What do you do?" -"Maybe we play games or we go to a park and have a picnic."

When I was a kid, my father would take us at least once every two weeks to the park

and we'd have a picnic, and we'd just play. So we all got to know each other because we

could ask each other about the week, what had happened during the week in a nice, casual

situation. Or, you know, yeah, situation. The best thing about it was that it was every

week, so I kind of started looking forward to it, and I got to know people who I lived

with even better.

And guess what? You can do the same with English strangers, practicing your English, working

on your conversation, which is a skill you're going to learn to need... Learn and need for

work, social situations, dating, it goes on and on. Just think about how you live your

world now in your country speaking your own language, and how you're going to have to

use that same kind of skillset or those same skills in an English-speaking environment.

If you can learn how to use W5, you're going to find that not only can you do the situations

in life that you need to, (you know, go to the doctors, go on a date, get a job) you'll

have fun doing it, and maybe make extra friends while doing so.

Anyway, that's my speech on it. I hope you enjoyed it. You should learn now, here is

an example speech, how to change everyday conversation. And you notice in sometimes,

you can just put the "How" in front of the "do", like: "How do you buy presents at Christmas?",

"How do you celebrate?" Right? Just even something as simple as that can change the whole way

you ask a question and the response you get back. Did you like that? Glad you did it.

So you're probably wondering: How can you learn more English? See, I just gave you information

question. And I'll give you the answer, because I can't say: "Yes" or "No", I'm going to say:

Go to www, "eng" as in English, "vid" as in (

where you can go over this lesson again, go over other lessons on conversation skills, and master your English.

I look forward to seeing you there. And once again, thank you for supporting engVid.

Have a good day. And before I forget: Don't forget to subscribe. That button might be here, here,

here, or here. Wherever you are, press "Subscribe" and you can get the latest video that I produce

whenever it's ready. All right? Take care.

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