Developing a rich vocabulary and understanding grammar rules are often seen as the most essential components of mastering English as a second language (ESL). But even though vocabulary and grammar are important, so is pronunciation. For example, if you say the word ‘climb’ you’ll want to make sure that you pronounce the ‘c’ like a ‘k’ and keep the ‘b’ silent.
These mishaps can sometimes lead to fun stories, but once you begin studying at university, you’ll want to have your English pronunciation in good shape so that you don’t run into misunderstandings. Thankfully, ESL programs like CultureWorks are designed to help you develop excellent pronunciation skills. CultureWorks even offers an entire elective on pronunciation, called Pronunciation & Conversation!
Want a few extra ways that can help you improve your pronunciation? Read on for a few easy-to-use tips ESL students can use throughout their studies!
Students at ESL School Can Listen to Themselves Speak for Extra Practice
When learning how to pronounce English words properly during an English as a second language program in Canada, students often only focus on getting the sound out of their mouth. But without actually tuning in to how it sounds, it’s possible to miss out on how to properly pronounce a word. That’s why it’s a good idea for ESL students to use a smartphone or laptop microphone to record themselves saying a word or phrase. They can then play it back to hear how it sounds and if there are any changes they’d like to make. Another tip is to listen to that word or phrase in a popular film or song, and then practice repeating it.
Speaking Slowly Can Help Students at ESL School Improve Their Pronunciation
Good English doesn’t have to be spoken quickly. In fact, speaking too quickly can keep students repeating bad pronunciation habits. That’s because when we speak quickly, we often don’t think as much about how we’re pronouncing words. And this is why many instructors at ESL school encourage students to take their time and speak slowly to ensure that they are sounding out words and phrases correctly.
ESL Programs Are All About Practicing Sounds!
Words are nothing more than sounds with meanings attached to them. Rather than practicing full words and phrases, sometimes learning great pronunciation can be done through practicing the sounds within words. For example, if you’re having issues pronouncing the word ‘there’, try isolating the ‘th’ sound and practicing that alone. Then once you feel like this sound has been mastered, you can go back to using it in the word you’re practicing, and then in a phrase.
ESL Students Get to Practice Pronunciation on Field Trips
While attending CultureWorks, students have the opportunity to go on many field trips. Throughout your studies, you can go on trips to beaches, parks, and top Canadian sites and cities for some fun and adventure. However, it’s important not to forget that these trips have great learning potential! Try out your new pronunciation skills as you speak with guides or order a tasty treat.
And since Canada is such a diverse and multi-cultural country, people are very receptive to English pronunciation that isn’t perfect, and will often help you along in your learning.
With these handy pronunciation tips—and the training of a top program under your belt—you’ll be pronouncing words perfectly in no time!
Want to learn more about pronunciation by enrolling in a top ESL program?
Contact CultureWorks to speak with one of our friendly advisors!