Everyday I get tons of e-mails from readers, current students, old students, among others asking me how they can improve their pronunciation. They all have something in common. They want to speak English clearly and confidently
I think it is everybody’s dream to be able to speak English like a native speaker, but English pronunciation is always a big problem to ESL/EFL learners. I don’t think you should try to have a native speaker accent, especially because even native speakers have their own accent. I mean, my wife is Canadian from Ottawa and my best friend is Canadian from Toronto and they have slightly different accents. So my question is, why bother?
I think you HAVE TO worry about having bad English pronunciation. I say that because bad English pronunciation may confuse people even if you use the most advanced English grammar. After all, we can always use simple words and simple grammar structures that will make people understand you but we cannot use “simple pronunciation”.
On the other hand, we have good English pronunciation and what I mean by good English pronunciation is being understood by people and people be willing to listen to you!
So, how to speak English clearly and confidently? There are three ways: practice, practice and practice!
I know you must be a little bit disappointed, but the truth of the matter is that there’s no secret to learning and improving your pronunciation. I remember as a student I used to listen to music, practice tongue twisters, repeat individual sounds, among other things.
So, starting now I will publish a series of posts devoted to learning and improving your pronunciation skills. I hope you all enjoy!
According to wikipedia‘s definition, “Tongue Twisters” are phrases that are designed to be difficult to articulate properly. Tongue-twisters may rely on similar but distinct phonemes (e.g., s [s] and sh [ʃ]), unfamiliar constructs in loanwords, or other features of a language.
Try practicing the tongue twisters to improve your pronunciation and have fun!
and here’s a funny video about a French guy trying to learn English.