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EFL/ESL leaeners' attitude towards pronunciation

 
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Mike5578



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2004 6:07 am    Post subject: EFL/ESL leaeners' attitude towards pronunciation Reply with quote

Idea Hi

I taught English/Pronuncition (Phonetics) in Taiwan. I am Taiwanese. I am kind of interested in investigating the attitude of the EFL/ESL learners
might have towards pronunciation.

If we can come up a questionnair of ...things like:

1. Do they feel embarrassed when pronounce non-native-like accent?
2. Do female learners are somewhat pronounce English more correct
than that of male do?
3. Do they value the American accent more then the British accent?
4. How do learners of different levels value pronunciation .
5. Do they think standard pronunciation is importnat?
...

Please give me your idea.


Regards,


Mike Chen
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revel



Joined: 06 Jan 2004
Posts: 532

PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2004 7:03 am    Post subject: Some answers.... Reply with quote

Hello, Mike.

I teach ESL almost exclusively through pronunciation. I firmly believe that pronunciation is the gateway to comprehension, memory, fluidity. The majority of my students come to me with little or no pronunciation work done.

First of all, pronunciation in my classes is a physical activity. It is worked on through vocal exercises, minimal pair work, sentence transformation exercises and required home-work. For more details, look for my articles in this thread on pronuncation.

Addressing your questions:

1. They are often somewhat embarrassed when I instruct them on the production of certain sounds. They don't like it always when I make them produce those sounds alone, they are afraid of the reactions of their classmates. That's okay, they need to confront that embarrassment at once, it can become an interference in trying to use English.

2. I notice no difference based on sex in learning pronunciation, either physically or emotionally.

3. My students will never speak without a Spanish accent, so teaching them a Queen's accent or a President's accent is not important. What we learn in class is to try to get as close to a native way of saying things without marking that this accent or that is better or worse. Look at the number of different accents in the city of London, or the city of New York and anyone will see that it is futile to try to mark one or another as the standard, the best.

4. Beginners in my classes value pronunciation because I make it clear that it is the basis of all of our classes. More advanced students are a bit more reticent to accept such, but since I insist, they finally accept the work and recognize the value.

5. No, as I mention in answer 3, standard pronunciation is not important; rather, spitting those chains of sound out without tripping over their tongues is important, then, understanding chains of sounds is important, then, getting on with the business of getting their ideas across is important.

Do trust those answers will contribute to your thoughts on the subject.

peace,
revel.
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monkeywrangler



Joined: 21 Aug 2004
Posts: 6
Location: China

PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 2004 7:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

1. Do they feel embarrassed when pronounce non-native-like accent?
I haven't found that my kids get embarrassed so much as exasperated with how many times I make them repeat a sound until they conquer it.

2. Do female learners are somewhat pronounce English more correct
than that of male do?
I think it depends on the interests of the student. At the school I teach at the girls seem to be more interested in doing well more than the boys are. I believe they do better because they want to do better, not because the girls are more naturally inclined towards correct pronunciation.

3. Do they value the American accent more then the British accent?
The goal in teaching English is to give the students the ability to be understood by a native English speaker. It doesn't matter what accent they use as long as they can be understood and can understand native English speakers in return.

4. How do learners of different levels value pronunciation .
My school holds a lot of oral competitions, so good pronunciation becomes more important to the students the closer they come to competition time.

5. Do they think standard pronunciation is importnat?
There are certain sounds that need to be said correctly or the English learner will not be understood. Sometimes my students get frustrated when we play spelling games because they have a tendency to say the pin yin letters instead of English letters and it results in my not counting the word correctly. I have to remind them a lot to spell it in English.
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Mike5578



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Sat Sep 04, 2004 2:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wink

Don't you guys think that the ESL/EFL learners' attitude towards pronunciation are quite different. What could the differences possibly be?
Why?
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