English Proficiency Tips - Ten Tips for Accent Reduction


Practice with Pronunciation Using English is a stress-timed language and, as such, good pronunciation depends a lot on the ability to accent the correct words and successfully use intonation to make sure you are understood. Simply put, spoken English stress the principal elements in a sentence - content words - and quickly glides over the less important words - function words. Nouns, principal verbs, adjectives and adverbs are all content words. Pronouns, articles, auxiliary verbs, prepositions, conjunctions are function words and are pronounced quickly moving towards the more important words. This quality of quickly gliding over less important words is also known as 'connected speech'.

In a plain manner, focusing on the 'correct' pronunciation of each word - much as some students do when trying to pronounce well. In the natural, manner with content words being stressed and function words receiving little stress.

Ten Tips for Accent Reduction

Observe the mouth movements of native speakers and try to imitate them

When you are watching T.V. look at the mouth movements of the speakers. Repeat what they are saying, imitating the intonation and rhythm of their speech.

Listen to the “music” of English.
Don’t use the music of your native language when you are speaking English. Each language has its own way of “singing”.

Make a list of frequently used words that are difficult for you to pronounce and ask a native speaker to pronounce them for you.

Record these words, listen to them and practice saying them.

Pronounce the ending of each word.

Pay special attention to “s” and “ed” endings.

Record your own voice and listen for pronunciation mistakes.

Many people hate to hear the sound of their voice and avoid having to listen to themselves speaking. However, this is a very important exercise because doing it will help you become conscious of the mistakes that you are making.

Until you learn the correct intonation and rhythm of English, slow down your speech.

If you speak too quickly with the wrong intonation and rhythm, native speakers will have a hard time understanding you. Don’t worry about your listener getting impatient with your slow speech – it is more important that everything you say be understood.

Use your dictionary

Become familiar with the phonetic symbols of your dictionary and look up the correct pronunciation of words that are hard for you to say.

Buy books on tape.

Listen and read at the same time. Record yourself reading some sections of the book. Compare the sound of your English with that of the speaker from the book on tape.

Read aloud in English for fifteen to twenty minutes each day.

This will help you strengthen the mouth muscles that you use when you speak English. Research has shown that it takes about three months of daily practice to develop strong mouth muscles for speaking a new language.

Be patient.

You can change the way you speak but it won’t happen overnight. People often expect instant results and give up too soon. You can change the way you sound if you are willing to put some effort into it.

Tongue Twisters , may help you to pronounce clearly

Practice these everyday…..

Who slit the sheet, the sheet is slit. Who ever slit the sheet is a good sheet slitter.

Red Leather Yellow Leather

Red Lorry Yellow Lorry

Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.
Did Peter Piper pick a peck of pickled peppers?
If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
Where's the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?

Betty Botter had some butter,
"But," she said, "this butter's bitter.
If I bake this bitter butter,
It would make my batter bitter.

But a bit of better butter--
That would make my batter better."
So she bought a bit of butter,
Better than her bitter butter,
And she baked it in her batter,
And the batter was not bitter.
So 'twas better Betty Botter
Bought a bit of better butter.
She sells sea shells by the sea shore.
The shells she sells are surely seashells.
So if she sells shells on the seashore,
I'm sure she sells seashore shells
A Tutor who tooted a flute
Tried to tutor two tooters to toot.
Said the two to their tutor,
"Is it harder to toot
Or to tutor two tooters to toot?"

Say these fast...

Double bubble gum bubbles double.

Guts, Greed & Glory

She said she should sit.

If you notice this notice you will notice that this notice is not worth noticing.

Real weird rear wheels.

Tomorrow is the third Thursday of this month.

Crisps crusts crackle and crunch.

The sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep is sick.

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