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Work/Life English

E-02.08 Acquire Effective Accent-Acquisition Principles: Syllables & Syllable-Stress Patterns

E-02.08 Acquire Effective Accent-Acquisition Principles: Syllables & Syllable-Stress Patterns

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Accent Activities: Pronunciation Supplement to Speaking. Part Two: Syllables Made Simple (Syllables & Syllable-Stress Patterns), pages 21-30 (+ pages 81-82 of Answer Key for Text Exercises)  

10 + 2 (12) pages

Who It’s For: Principles of Syllable-Stress should be applied to fluent speech, as well as words, phrases, and sentences that comprise it. Syllables are the “beats” of “speech music.”  Coherent speakers need to be aware of—and to articulate—correct  numbers of syllables.  Depending on the impact they wish to have when they talk, they ought to pronounce Stressed Syllables relatively longer, higher, louder, and/or more distinctly than Unstressed ones, which may sound shorter, lower, softer, and/or less clear or even “reduced.”  Here’s pedagogy and practice based on these “rules.” With  plenty of Vocabulary, it illustrates how Multi-Syllabic Stress Patterns work in Context.

Why It’s Useful: Beginning with stressed One-Syllable Words, the sample utterances in Part Two of ACCENT ACTIVITIES: Pronunciation Supplement to Speaking: Oral Language Skills for Real-Life Communication arrive quickly at polysyllabic items that constitute “Speech Units.” Learners apply its principles in Exercise Items, the correct responses to which appear in attached pages from its corresponding Answer Key.  

What You’ll Do: 

[1]  With language fluency, again demonstrate (the rhythm of) “the beats” of American-English “Speech Music,” discernible / reproducible in utterances of varying length.  In Exercises 1-4, practice contrasting strongly, weakly, and unstressed syllables in (combinations of) words. In Exercise 5, demonstrate your ability to Predict Syllable-Stress Patterns. Compare your educated guesses to those in (annotated) Answer Key listings.   

[2] In preparation for discussing “Problems & Solutions” of your own, “analyze” given discourse, checking your identification of syllabic patterns with the supplied numbers/letters. Continue using Syllable-Stress Patterns in communicative real-life exchanges.  More material for “Problem-Solving Talk” is in Download E-10.05, excerpted from Speaking: Oral Language Skills for Real-Life Communication.

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