Phonetics Workshops


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Some ways to have fun with phonetics exercises with individual students or groups.

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Phonetics Workshops

  1. 1. Improving Listening Comprehension while having fun! By Amanda Osorio Galindo
  2. 2. Why work with phonetics? <ul><li>The Centro Colombo Americano of Manizales is an Institution whose aim is to provide students with courses of English in which they not only learn grammar, vocabulary, reading skills, but also learn how to communicate effectively; this implies first of all having a good understanding of the spoken language as well as using it effectively. In order to do this, our students need to become aware of the differences that exist between isolated sounds and connected speech. Spanish speakers usually do not understand what they hear due to the fact that they are not aware that in the spoken language words change their pronunciation due to different factors and that it is a must that they become familiar with these changes through every day practice. </li></ul>
  3. 3. TERMS TO BE TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT BY TEACHERS WHEN WORKING WITH PHONICS Phonetics The phonetic alphabet Connected speech Linking Elision Deletion Content words Function words
  4. 4. <ul><li>Phonetics: Science that deals with the study of sounds. </li></ul><ul><li>The Phonetic Alphabet: A set of symbols which represent the way a word is pronounced, and which many teachers confuse with Phonetics. The I.P.A (International Phonetic Alphabet). It is used as the standard one in every language. </li></ul><ul><li>Connected Speech: The flow of words that come together during a conversation or a song in which words are connected in a special way in order to transmit our ideas or thoughts, and which poses a great deal of difficulty to foreigners that even though having a good knowledge of the language, and a good set of words in stock, are not able to understand as they expect every single word to be pronounced separately. </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Linking: In normal conversation we do not pronounce words one at a time, instead, we form our thoughts and express them with words that are joined and blended together to make a phrase (a thought group). We say the words in the phrase smoothly, connecting the sound of the last word to the beginning of the next word without stopping after each word. For instance, pick it up, give it to him, take her to the park, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Elision: The omission of a syllable or sound that exists in written form, and this usually happens when two consonants come together, for example, comf(o)r(t)able, complet(e)ly, ai(s)le, (k)nock, (w)res(t)le, etc. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Content Words <ul><li>Content words: Those words in a sentence which carry the meaning, and thus are the ones which need to be emphasized while speaking. These words are usually the ones which students can hear more easily due to the fact that they are stressed during relaxed pronunciation. They are: nouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Function Words <ul><li>These are words which serve as grammatical links and are the ones which usually foreigners do not hear during relaxed speech due to the fact that they are usually unstressed. They are: articles, pronouns, possessives, prepositions, auxiliary verbs and conjunctions. </li></ul>
  8. 8. A Lovely Poem! <ul><li>When it’s English that we speak </li></ul><ul><li>Why is break not rhymed with weak? </li></ul><ul><li>(Because they rhyme with steak and seek) </li></ul><ul><li>Will you tell me why it’s true </li></ul><ul><li>That sew does not rhyme with few? </li></ul><ul><li>(Because they rhyme with oh and you .) </li></ul><ul><li>We say cow, and that rhymes with how. </li></ul><ul><li>But low doesn’t rhyme with now, </li></ul><ul><li>(Because they rhyme with owe and bough.) </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>And since pay is rhymed with may, </li></ul><ul><li>Why not said with paid? </li></ul><ul><li>(Because they rhyme with bed and made) </li></ul><ul><li>Now here is another one for you: </li></ul><ul><li>Beard does not sound the same as heard </li></ul><ul><li>(Because they rhyme with weird and bird .) </li></ul><ul><li>We have blood that rhymed with mud </li></ul><ul><li>Food that rhymes with rude </li></ul><ul><li>And good that rhymes with could. </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>Shoes is never rhymed with toes, </li></ul><ul><li>But is with whose and blues; </li></ul><ul><li>And I can also think of Zoos and chews. </li></ul><ul><li>Are you surprised to know </li></ul><ul><li>That toes rhymes with hose </li></ul><ul><li>And beaus, and foes, and loaves ? </li></ul><ul><li>And what’s more, </li></ul><ul><li>Horse sounds like course </li></ul><ul><li>And worse sounds like curse? </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>I’ve hardly made a start, gee, </li></ul><ul><li>I’m sure you will agree </li></ul><ul><li>In the way that sounds and letters disagree. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Silent Letters <ul><li>Objective: The aim of this activity is to recognize certain sounds which are usually omitted in the English Language. </li></ul><ul><li>Game: Split the class into groups of 3 people, ask them to read each set of words aloud, then ask them to identify the sound or sounds which are omitted in each word. Next, ask them to classify the words according to the sounds which are omitted. After that, have the students identify sound patterns, and finally as a wrap up activity you can have the students think of examples for each of the categories they found. The first group to finish this activity is rewarded by the teacher in whatever way he/she considers appropriate. </li></ul>
  13. 13. MININAL PAIRS <ul><li>This is usually one of the biggest problems our students have due to the fact that they do not differentiate short sounds from long ones. </li></ul><ul><li>A good activity to practice these kind of sounds is by choosing common words they mispronounce and which tend to cause misunderstandings, or embarrassing situations. </li></ul><ul><li>Identify the intruder: Students can work individually or in groups. They are given sentences in which they have to identify the word that does not belong in the sentence. After they have identified it, they have to provide the one word that best completes the idea. For this exercise it is a good idea to use words such as: teeth, tits, God, gut, voice, boys, gay, guy, eyes, AIDS, shit, sheet. Have the students pronounce them, and them give them feedback, and if possible laugh with the students, not at them! </li></ul>
  14. 14. HOMOPHONES <ul><li>Listen to the definitions provided by your teacher and then, choose the word being defined. </li></ul><ul><li>a. Right b. write </li></ul><ul><li>a. Flour b. flower </li></ul><ul><li>a. I b. Eye </li></ul><ul><li>a. Threw b. through </li></ul><ul><li>a. Beach b. beech </li></ul><ul><li>a. Way b. weigh </li></ul><ul><li>a. Wait b. weight </li></ul><ul><li>a. Rest b. wrest </li></ul>
  15. 15. Grouping words according to their pronunciation. <ul><li>Read the following words aloud and then, write them under the corresponding category. The first group to finish the activity wins! </li></ul><ul><li>Gum, seat, sit, tin, team, walk, love, ball, sing, seen, beam, all, tall, thing, mom, mug, but, sir, chin, teen, mill, meal. </li></ul><ul><li>/  / e.g. come </li></ul><ul><li>/ / e.g. bird </li></ul><ul><li>/ / e.g. draw </li></ul><ul><li>/ i / e.g. cheap </li></ul><ul><li>/ I / e.g. trip </li></ul>
  16. 16. Tongue twisters <ul><li>She sells sea shells by the sea shore </li></ul><ul><li>Two tiny little toads trying to trot to Terry Town. </li></ul><ul><li>I thought a thought, but the thought I thought I had thought wasn’t the thought I thought I had thought. If the thought I thought had been the thought I thought I had thought, I wouldn’t have thought so much. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Mimic The Rhymes! <ul><li>One, two, </li></ul><ul><li>Buckle my shoe; </li></ul><ul><li>Three, four, </li></ul><ul><li>Knock at the door </li></ul><ul><li>Five, six </li></ul><ul><li>Pick up sticks; </li></ul><ul><li>Seven, eight, </li></ul><ul><li>Lay them straight. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Adapting Songs <ul><li>Let’s dance to La Bamba, let’s dance to la Bamba, let’s have some fun, </li></ul><ul><li>let’s have some fun! </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>Let’s dance to this music </li></ul><ul><li>Let’s dance to this music </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Cause when we dance we have some fun, </li></ul><ul><li>we have some fun! </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>Lower, Lower, Lower. Lower, </li></ul><ul><li>Higher, higher, higher, higher, </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, </li></ul><ul><li>bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>One left step, one left step </li></ul><ul><li>Forward, forward, </li></ul><ul><li>forward, forward </li></ul><ul><li>Backwards, backwards, </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>Left…Right… </li></ul><ul><li>Back… forward… </li></ul><ul><li>Forward… </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>One right step, one right step </li></ul><ul><li>One front step, one front step </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>Bamba, bamba, bamba, bamba </li></ul><ul><li>One back step, one back step… </li></ul><ul><li>Let’s go on dancing, let’s on dancing… Let’s have some fun, let’s have some… (chorus) </li></ul>
  19. 19. Rhymes and Poems <ul><li>The blind mice! </li></ul><ul><li>See how they run! </li></ul><ul><li>They all run after the farmer’s wife, </li></ul><ul><li>She cut off their tails with a carving knife. </li></ul><ul><li>Did you ever see such a sight in your life </li></ul><ul><li>As three blind mice? </li></ul>
  20. 20. Songs <ul><li>One of the best ways to get the student’s attention is to work with songs they enjoy, and thus it should be important to allow them to choose at least some of the songs they are going to listen to in class. </li></ul><ul><li>In order to have a good selection of songs, the students work in groups in order to choose and select 3 songs which are brought to class, then, the teacher helps them to select the most appropriate ones according to the topics studied in class or the sounds that should be be emphasized. And finally, exercises are prepared based on the needs of the class and the available material. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Blending Sounds <ul><li>1. Half a cup of coffee </li></ul><ul><li>2. Believe in yourself </li></ul><ul><li>3. Advice about resources </li></ul><ul><li>4. Relieve from duties </li></ul><ul><li>5. Abuse at work </li></ul><ul><li>6. Excuse from class </li></ul><ul><li>7. Save money </li></ul><ul><li>8. House guests </li></ul>
  22. 22. <ul><li>That’s all! </li></ul><ul><li>Thanks!!! </li></ul>
  23. 23. BIBLIOGRAPHY <ul><li>Regents Book English Workbook. Intermmediate. Robert J. Dixon.Prentice Hall. Englewood Cliffs. NJ 07632 </li></ul><ul><li>Well Said Advanced English Pronunciation. Linda Grant. </li></ul><ul><li>English Phonics </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>