viernes, 23 de septiembre de 2011

Pronunciation Perfection

Janet Goodwin is a professor at UCLA and coauthor of Teaching Pronunciation.
In this video interview she says, “real English is messy“. “It is so good to have a video where you are able to look with the students at what is going on…“. “It is much better preparation for students.”

She also highlights some tips for both teaching pronunciation and learning how to improve your own.

Self-study activity:
Janet's interview is lengthish, almost seven minutes, so it's going to be quite demanding for us to listen to her for a long period of time.

In the interview, Janet is going to explain her method to teach pronunciation and the great benefits she obtains from it.

Watch and listen to the interview and note down what she says about the following:

International graduate students
What jobs do they want to do?
Do they have to do an exam after the course?
What specific pronunciation work are they given during the course?

Undergraduate students
How many of them help Janet?
What do they talk about?
How long are the videos?
What specific illustration of real life language does Janet mention?

In conclusion, Janet is suggesting a really interesting way of learning pronunciation: She believes in the power of short video segements for intensive listening and pronunciation practice. She feels that selecting a short clip and imitating it results in real progress.

So why don't we give this method a try?

Graduate students
They want to be Teaching Assistants in their departments.
Yes, an oral proficiency exam at the end of the course.
They are assigned one different one-minute video segment [from the undergraduate students] which answers a specific question, then they extensively listen to it by writing the transcript and studying it. Also, Janet asks these graduate students to try and find different aspects of pronunciation that they have previously studied in class (intonation, reduced speech, word stress). Finally graduate students have to imitate the one-minute segment as much as possible.

Undergraduate students
Three or four undergraduate students that she knows.
They talk about their life, how they chose their major, what they like to do in their spare time, what they do on a typical day.
15-20 minutes.
The use of gonna, an expression that is not too academic but that the students keep coming up with.

H/T to English Central Blog.