DO YOU UNDERSTAND THE STRUCTURE? LET´S HAVE A LOOK AT A JOKE…
TODAY’S JOKE _______________________________________________________
A man went to the optician’s to have his eyes tested.
The optician showed him a card.
“Can you read that?” he asked.
“No,” said the man.
The optician moved a little closer.
“Can you read it now?” he asked.
“No,” said the man.
So the optician came right next to him and said,
“Surely, you can read it now!”
“No”, said the man.” I can’t read.”
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF READING ALOUD IN A FOREIGN LANGUAGE? IS IT A WASTE OF TIME?
Among many other benefits “reading aloud can help your pronunciation. Even if you already know how to pronounce the language pretty well, it is hard to fit your mouth and tongue around the foreign sounds. Reading aloud gives your vocal organs the exercise they need to speak without getting tired or stumbling. If you are still fuzzy on pronunciation, use texts with recordings on CD or MP3 files, and repeat after the native speakers. But following along in the book will give you added input over simply listening and repeating. Try to copy the intonation and rhythm as well. You will be using eyes, ears, vocal apparatus, and of course, brain — all at once!”
SOME APPS CAN HELP YOU DO THIS WORK WHENEVER YOU DON´T HAVE THE RECORDING: READINGS ON YOUR TEXTBOOKS, GETTING READY FOR ORAL PRESENTATIONS, ETC….
- DO YOU KNOW ANY OF THESE WEBSITES OR APPS ?
- WHAT ARE THEY GOOD FOR?
- CAN YOU RECOMMEND ANY SIMILAR APPS?
You can paste the text.(SUITABLE FOR IOS &ANDROID)
TIPS TO IMPROVE PRONUNCIATION WHEN YOU´RE READING ALOUD
(BY my colleague JAVIER SANTOS ASENSI)
Step 1: Find CONTENT WORDS in the fragment you have chosen and make sure you know how to pronounce them.
- Even if meaning is different for different speakers, there are certain word categories that are usually more meaningful and therefore commonly stressed. They are often called content words: nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, negative words, pronouns (demonstrative, possessive –mine, yours…, reflexive –myself, yourself…, reciprocal –each other, one another , interrogative –who, what…), question words (where, how often, etc), intensifiers (too, much, quite, etc.) and modifiers ( numerals, cardinals, etc.)
- Pay special attention to those words you are very familiar with. Are you positive you have not made a habit of mispronouncing them? Check their pronunciation in your print or online dictionary or CD Rom
- First locate the stressed syllable (long words usually have a secondary stress as well)
- Then make sure you use weak vowels / Ə / and / I / in unstressed syllables
- Is there any consonant or vowel sound that you have problems pronouncing?
Step 2: Check the pronunciation of GRAMMAR WORDS (also called function words)
- Most times grammar words are not stressed. These include articles, determiners (the, some, each), auxiliary and modal verbs (do, have, be, may, will, etc.), one-syllable prepositions and conjunctions (to, from, of, and, but, etc.) If they have a weak pronunciation form, use it instead of the strong form you might be familiar with (check the pronunciation of these words in your reference chart)
Step 3: Are there any words you can contract?
- Remember that contraction is a feature of spoken language. You do not usually contract words in more formal written texts. If you are reading aloud you should try to contract whenever possible even if you do not see the contraction
- Revise the most common contractions: in the reference chart your teacher will provide you with.
Step 4: Connect unstressed words to meaningful stressed ones in a logical way
- First connect words into phrases (noun or prepositional phrases, etc.) in a logical way to avoid reading word to word and stressing every single word. These connected groups of words are often called thought groups
- Then try and connect phrases into short sentences
- Contracted forms as well as Word linking (connecting words ending in a consonant with the next word starting in a vowel or else words ending and beginning with vowels) will help us do it. In British English final “r” will be pronounced if the following word starts with a vowel (linking “r”).
- As a result the number of words in spelling and pronunciation will be absolutely different.
Step 5: Make sure you respect punctuation marks: pauses and intonation
- Periods (full stops) , commas, colons, semi-colons, parenthesis and the kind are realized as pauses in oral speech. These pauses will allow the listener to follow our utterance and ourselves to breathe. Moreover, if you run over the sentence limit, your utterance will make no sense at all for listeners, for they mark the end of an idea, a piece of explanation or clarification, an example, etc.
- Question and exclamation marks are realized as intonation patterns. Avoid flat intonation patterns, otherwise it will be difficult to make out your speech intention
RECORDING YOURSELF WOULD BE THE FINAL STEP AND PLAYBACK…. BUT WE´LL TALK ABOUT THIS IN ANOTHER POST…..
LISTEN TO PABLO IGLESIAS SPEAKING IN ENGLISH LAST YEAR. WHAT DO YOU THINK HIS PROBLEM IS?
LOOK AT THIS CHART.
THESE ARE THE SOUNDS OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE. AS YOU CAN SEE, THE CHART IS DIVIDED INTO THREE PARTS: VOWELS, DIPHTHONGS AND CONSONANTS.
LET´S CONCENTRATE ON THE REVISION OF ENGLISH VOWELS.
CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW OR THE PICTURE ABOVE TO USE AN INTERACTIVE VERSION OF THE CHART:
YOU CAN ALSO WATCH THIS VIDEO:
IF THE LINK DOESN´T WORK, TYPE IN “IPA VOWELS” ON YOUTUBE AND YOU´LL BE ABLE TO WATCH THE VIDEO. OK?
THIS IS ALSO A USEFUL LINK TO LISTEN TO THE VOWELS BELOW:
NOWADAYS THERE ARE MANY APPS YOU CAN DOWNLOAD TO PRACTISE PRONUNCIATION:
- SOUND FOUNDATIONS (there is a free version)
- ENGLISH FILE PRONUNCIATION (you have to pay to download)
FOR INTERMEDIATE STUDENTS AND ABOVE, YOU CAN ALSO VISIT THIS WEBSITE:
IF YOU HAD TO DESCRIBE A PHOTO ON YOUR MOBILE IN DETAIL, WHAT KIND OF LANGUAGE WOULD YOU NEED?
CLICK ON THIS PICTURE IF YOU WANT TO VISIT A WEBSITE WITH USEFUL LANGUAGE ON HOW TO DESCRIBE A PICTURE / PHOTO.
YOU CAN ALSO TRY TO SEE THIS DOCUMENT ON DESCRIBING PICTURES AND PHOTOS: DESCRIBING PICTURES
AND NOW GET READY TO DESCRIBE YOURS……
OBAMA´S ELECTION WAS SEEN BY MANY AS A HISTORIC MOMENT IN TIME AS HE WAS THE FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT ELECTED IN HISTORY. HOWEVER, UNEXPECTED TRUMP´S VICTORY WAS ONE OF THE MOST IMPROBABLE POLITICAL VICTORIES IN MODERN HISTORY, PLUNGING THE USA AND THE REST OF THE WORLD INTO AN UNCERTAIN FUTURE….
WHICH OTHER HISTORIC EVENTS IN YOUR LIFETIME DO YOU THINK WILL BE REMEMBERED BY FUTURE GENERATIONS? WHY?
- Where & when did that happen? What happened?
- How old were you? Where were you?
- What were you doing when you heard the news? Who were you with?
- How were you affected by the news? What did you do? How did you feel?
- Why do you think this event will be remembered by future generations?
POST YOUR PODCASTS AND YOUR PHOTOS.
THIS IS ONE EXAMPLE:
WE´RE GOING TO BREAK UP FOR EASTER.
ALL THE HOMEWORK CAN BE CHECKED BY CLICKING ON CLASSWORK, DEPENDING ON THE LEVELS.
- IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN EASTER TRADITIONS IN SPAIN YOU CAN READ THE ARTICLES BELOW:
IF YOU´RE A B2 STUDENT AND WANT TO IMPROVE YOUR VOCABULARY ON HOLY WEEK, TRY THIS LINK http://www.isabelperez.com/holy1.htm
THESE ARE SOME NEWS STORIES I COULD FIND IN NEWSPAPERS TODAY … AS YOU CAN SEE THE PASSIVE IS USED IN A VARIETY OF TENSES…..
Catalan separatist leader Carles Puigdemont was detained by German police as he crossed the border from Denmark on Sunday.
“He has been properly treated in the police station” his lawyer declared.
She could be jailed for up to 25 years if convicted of the charges of rebellion and sedition
Nobody knows if he will be extradited to Spain but a decision must be made within 10 days
90 people were hurt or injured in the angry protests
THE PASSIVE IS VERY OFTEN USED IN THE NEWS
WHEN DO WE USE THE PASSIVE?
REMEMBER TO READ THE GRAMMAR ON PAGE 147 AND DO THE PRACTICE EXERCISES ABOUT THE PASSIVE DURING YOUR EASTER HOLIDAY.
CAN YOU FIND ANY OTHER NEWS STORIES IN NEWSPAPERS WHERE THE PASSIVE IS USED?
When do I change my clock?
SPAIN will soon have to face the miserable prospect of an hour LESS in bed as the clocks go forward this weekend…Spain swaps to Summer Time on Sunday, March 24th at 2 am , which means you should put your clock forward an hour, when it will become 3 am..If you live in the Canary Islands, the switchover will be at 01.00hrs, when the time resets to 02.00hrs.
Luckily, most mobiles phones and radio-controlled clocks will do this automatically, but you’d better check just to make sure.
It might mark the beginning of spring, but it will also shave 60 minutes off your precious slumber time.
LISTEN TO TWO DIFFERENT SAMPLES OF TWO VERY POPULAR SONGS WITH A SIMILAR TITLE.
CAN YOU REMEMBER THEIR TITLE? WHO ARE THEY BY?
WHAT´S THE DIFFERENCE IN MEANING BETWEEN THE TWO TITLES?
Post your grammar explanation and we´ll keep in touch!
MODAL VERB + (SIMPLE)
PRESENT DEDUCTION (CERTAINTY)
IT MUST HAVE BEEN LOVE
MODAL VERB + PERFECT INFINITIVE
HAVE + PAST PARTICIPLE
PAST DEDUCTION (CERTAINTY)
THIS KIND OF LANGUAGE IS VERY USEFUL BECAUSE WHEN YOU TALK ABOUT A PHOTO IN ORAL INTERVIEWS, YOU´RE SPECULATING ALL THE TIME….
WHAT LOGICAL DEDUCTIONS CAN YOU MAKE ON THE PHOTOS BELOW?