Do you teach pronounciation to your students?, is a question once asked to me by my professor.It is obvious fact that most of high school English teachers in my district don’t teach pronounciation to their students. Partly because teachers themselves may feel more uncertain about it than about grammar or lexis.However, when we (teacher) take a risk, we will find surprise that teaching pronounciation is very enjoyable and useful to our classroom work.
Scrievener (2011) challanges us with some ideas about teaching pronounciation to our students. There are 7 (seven) preliminary activities to motivate our students in using correct pronounciation.They don’t require our knowledge and understanding of phonemic symbol or any detailed background knowledge of phonology. Do you want to know what they are?here are the 3 out of those 7 challenges:
1. Model New Words in Context
When we teach lexical items,give students chance to hear you saying the items naturally in the context of a typical short phrase or sentence.Allow students to repeat the phrase and give them honest feedback if there seem to be problems. If necessary, remodel it and let students work out what they are doing differently.
2. Modelling Intonation
Our students dont get use to speak out using up and down tone. Our own language seems to be flat one.But it is not really a problem to teach them pronounciation.When we teach grammar,allow students to hear some typical examples of natural uses of language. So, for example,when teaching the present perfect progressive, don’t just teach it as dry examples, but model atypical real-life sentence or two yourself with real feeling ,such as “I’ve beenwaiting here for two hours!”. A Loud, angry sentence like this will bemuch more memorablethan a written examples. Get students to repeat it to each other -and don’t let them get away with flat,dull intonation.Encourage themto say it with real feeling.
3. Recognise the feeling
Scrievener (2011) encourages us to write four or five short spoken phrases on the left of the board (eg “Where are you going?” yes,please’).Write up a number of “moods” (adapting your intonation and stress to transmit a clear feeling).Ask students to compare ideas with each other and decide which was used.Later, learners can continue playing the game in small group.
Hopely, you enjoy these simple tips of teaching pronounciation to our student.Try and feel the difference then. Seize the day!!!