Teaching pronunciation step by step.
Good pronunciation helps English learners to:
#1 speak better
#2 listen better
# 3 read better......
And to learn English pronunciation, it is necessary to progress step by step, one step at a time....and with a sense of humor!
It is not necessary to pronounce "perfectly" - just well enough to be understood.
Nor is "accent reduction" necessary.
First, there are probably twenty different "native accents" anyway. Second, all the many different English accents from all over the world make English much more interesting!
In any case,
I have found that teaching the "basics" along with other lessons is very useful.
The "basics" are the sounds of the g/j, short I, short u, v, the and also the pronunciation of consonant at the end of words, such as thirteen, fourteen, etc.
Pronunciation is a physical movement, so I show everyone how to make the sounds. It's usually very comical. Especially when I show people how I learned to roll my Rr's. Now that was funny!!
So everybody learns how to say the alphabet and numbers during the first week or so. Then it's just a matter of practice.
Once the basics have been learned, people not only speak better but they have more confidence. Actually many stop being shy in class and begin to ask me more questions!!
Here is an anecdote about an experience one of my students had:
HOW I CAUSED A BIG PROBLEM FOR ONE OF
I once taught High School students in Tijuana. There were 35 to 50 students in each of my 8 classes. During one class I said in
Spanish to the students to practice pronunciation every morning in front of a mirror, like this:
Say out loud the letters G, J, L, R, and V five times.
Then say the short I, short U, and TH.
I demonstrated how to say the sounds and
everybody laughed. I said: “This is your
homework (tarea).” The next day I asked the
students if they had done their homework. They all laughed except one girl. She said: “Si Profe,pero tenia un problema.”
I asked in Spanish what was the problem.
She said that while she was
doing the exercises in the bathroom in front of
the mirror, her father walked by and asked her
what she was doing. She told him she was doing her English Pronunciation exercises that Profe Pablo had told her to do.
He said: “OY, OY –This
teacher is crazy!”
SO ----anyway, all I can say is
...English is crazy, no? I’m sorry!!!!
BUT I promise you can learn the pronunciation of English using these techniques, I promise!!!