Presentation on theme: "Teaching Pronunciation"— Presentation transcript:
1 Teaching Pronunciation Going beyond the “th” sound
2 Sharing Experiences A little about my experience What experience have you had with teaching pronunciation? If you haven't taught it before, why not?In your view, what are your students' biggest pronunciation problems?
4 Pronunciation MythsMyth #1: Learning the pronunciation of English means learning how to pronounce the individual vowel and consonant sounds.Myth #2: It is difficult, if not impossible, for students to hear and pronounce some sounds, such as the difference between the vowel sound in ship and the vowel sound in sheep. Therefore, it is useless to spend time on pronunciation.Myth #3: Nonnative speakers of English cannot teach pronunciation.Myth #4: Pronunciation instruction is boring. (Wong, 1993,
5 Fact #1There is much more to teaching pronunciation than individual sounds. What else is there? (Ideas?)
6 Segmentals vs. Suprasegmentals vowelsconsonantsSuprasegmentalsstressrhythm (stress-timed vs. syllable-timed)intonationpausing (thought groups)linking
7 Fact #2Yes, some learners may never learn to hear or produce some individual sounds. But...Students can at least be awarePronunciation is again, much more than individual soundsPronunciation is eye-opening and ear-opening! It improves listening, and can improve students' vocabulary, spelling and grammar.
8 Fact #3Non-native speakers can be better pronunciation teachers than native speakers. Why?You know the needs and difficulties of your learners intimatelyYou can help your learners focus on intelligibilityYou can provide an attainable model
9 Pronunciation can be the most fun part of class! Fact #4Pronunciation can be the most fun part of class!
10 Some General Guidelines 1. Listen first whenever possibleThe spoken form of the language is primaryWe don't always know the real sound of wordsStudents need examples, preferably real examples in context2. Mark up the text3. Add an action
11 Individual SoundsIt can be helpful to use some sort of sound transcription system—IPA, British Council, Simplified American, or simply the dictionary (online dictionaries are particularly useful).Build students' self-awareness. Let them say it and feel it. Mirrors and lollipops can help.Have students touch their throats to feel voicing.A piece of paper or a tissue can be great for aspiration.Websites with video and animation can help students see up close or inside the mouth set.html
12 The Color Vowel ChartGives students the basic “menu” of vowel sounds and lets students start to make distinctionsA good introduction is the activity on the websiteIt helps students learn stress too: the color of the word is the sound of the stressed syllable
13 Stress and Rhythm Mark stress and unstress Say a word and throw the ball on the stressed syllable, (i.e. fruits and vegetables)Rubber bandsTap, clap, lean, bend your knees, move your head, etc.Slap your thighs and raise your hands for the stress (good for long words)
14 Expanding Sentences KIDS PLAY BALL. DOGS CHASE CATS. PEOPLE PLANT TREES.
21 Pronouncing Punctuation See “Dear Jack” handouts
22 Further ResourcesMiller, S. F. (2007). Targeting Pronunciation. Boston: Heinle.Gilbert, J. B. (2001). Clear Speech from the Start. New York: Cambridge UP.Hancock, M. (2003). English Pronunciation in Use. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.Avery, P. & Erlich, S. (1992). Teaching American English Pronunciation. Oxford: Oxford UP.