sábado, 3 de noviembre de 2012

Week 3 – Pronunciation in Primary School English Classes.

I have the feeling that this week I should write about the PLE and their relations to the PLN and the LMS, but after all, I don’t believe that I’m an expert and I do not want to lead you astray, so I decided to talk about pronunciation in primary school English classes.
With Carlos, Iris and Sara, I’ll do an oral presentation for our classmates in Terence’s Advanced English class.
First of all, I’d like to show you the presentation we will use.
(See? As I promised in the previous post, I’ve used another resource from the web to show you this ppt)

I’ll focus on “Why is pronunciation important?”
Well, everything seems really natural when we refer to the acquisition of a first language, but when are talking about another language – learnt in an artificial way and without any urgent need to communicate- the situation changes a lot.
In this artificial context, our pupils have to be able to understand spoken English and also must be able make themselves be understood when they speak English. This is where the teaching of good pronunciation from the beginning of the learning process gains importance.
Certainly, pronunciation is one of the most difficult aspects of the English language. The frustration caused when it comes to teaching pronunciation in class has been so overwhelming that sometimes it is avoided completely. Amongst the teaching community there is a conviction that, with time, the pupils will dominate English pronunciation, far overestimating the capability for imitation that their students have at that age. It is proven that the capability for imitation decreases considerably with time and varies a lot from one pupil to another.

Obviously, we have to take into account that there are different accents and that some words are pronounced differently depending on the country or region we are in.
A good way to achieve the teaching of pronunciation in class, in a fun and easier way than it is done now, is to use Jolly Phonics.
Jolly Phonics is a fun and child-centred approach to teaching literacy through synthetic phonics. With actions for each of the 42 letter sounds, the multi-sensory method is very motivating for children and teachers, who can see how their students are improving. The letter sounds are split into seven groups as shown below.
The sounds are not taught in any specific order (not alphabetically). This enables children to begin building words as early as possible.
Jolly phonics teaches children the five key skills for reading and writing (Learning the letter sound, Learning letter formation, Blending, Identifying the sounds in words [segmenting] and Tricky words)
Have a look at the slide where the Jolly songs are shown. They have nice melodies that are really catchy and work really well for teaching the sounds.
I hope that all the activities included in the slideshare are useful when you are in a class.

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