- Written by Anton
- Category: Learning Tips
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This course aims to help students develop natural English pronunciation using accelerated learning techniques and visual aids.
Understanding how your brain functions and how new experiences establish neural links is an essential part to improvement. Once these neural pathways have been formed they must be cultivated and strengthened.
It all starts with the International Phonetic Alphabet. The English alphabet is not a phonetic script and therefore not an accurate guide for pronunciation. However, the international phonetic alphabet helps us distinguish and identify the different phonemes that exist in the English language. While the English alphabet only has 5 vowels, in fact, more than 20 vowel sounds exist. These 20 vowels sounds can be divided into monophthongs, diphthongs and long vowel sounds.
Tune your ears. The human brain requires constant practice and reinforcement to adapt to something new. Comparing similar but different sounds within the context of various situations helps the brain establish and reinforce the neural pathways to become better adept at being able to identify the small details that often non-native speakers miss.
For example, the short vowel /ʌ/ and the schwa sound /ə/ can sound very similar, but they are in fact different. Initially, students may perceive both sounds to be almost identical. However, constant reinforcement by comparing these two sounds in the context of different syllables and vocabulary will help the brain become accustomed to the subtle differences.
Reinforcement in the real world. A pronunciation course and structure can only provide students with the essential tools, knowledge and groundwork. The knowledge gained within the classroom must then be applied in the real world.
- Listen to natural spoken English as much as possible.
- Observe the facial movements and breathing of native English speakers.
- Try and compare yourself and adapt. Remember, practice makes perfect.
Immerse yourself in the natural sounds of British English as much as possible. Audiobooks are an excellent resource that can help you achieve this, since narrators tend to speak clearly and at a steady pace. Audible has a vast library of audiobooks on a range of subjects narrated by different people. For example, if you wish to tune your ears to the natural sounds of Received Pronunciation, start with one of the many books narrated by Stephen Fry. See link below.
International phonetic alphabet: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Phonetic_Alphabet
Online self-study course: https://receivedpronunciation.thinkific.com/collections
- Written by Anton
- Category: Workshop Event
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We will be hosting a three-part workshop held on three consecutive Saturdays at Victoria Library. Participants will be limited to a maximum of six people. Participants will be enrolling in all three 90-minute workshops held on three different dates. This short and concise course has been specifically designed to help students master the fundamentals of British English pronunciation.
Join the waiting list: group_workshop @receivedpronunciation.co.uk
Session 01: The basic sounds and tools
We’ll start with the tools to help us achieve natural British English pronunciation: the monophthong chart and the International Phonetic Alphabet.
These tools will help us accurately identify the target sounds of British English pronunciation. We’ll also take a look at the physiological aspects. How do we shape the mouth, round the lips, and position the tongue so that we can replicate the sounds just like a native English speaker?
Session 02: Natural rhythm
During the second session, we’ll study the principles of connected speech and syllable stress. Connected speech helps us transition from one sound to another with ease and fluidity. We will take a look at the characteristics that help us achieve this: glottal stops, semi-vowels (glide vowels), and weaker forms.
Session 03: Applying what we have learned
Each participant will read out a script prepared in advance and given feedback to work on. The script should be no more than 200 words and include vocabulary and expressions that they use regularly.
Each workshop is 90 minutes long and the number of participants will be limited to six people. Enrollment in the online course materials is also highly recommended (purchased separately).
Session 01: to be announced soon
Session 02: to be announced soon
Session 03: to be announced soon
Location: Victoria Library
Cost per person (including all three workshops): 90GBP
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