Pronunciation/phonetics practice

Create an audio-visual prompt (or a series of prompts) on Extempore in which you model the standard pronunciation of new vocabulary items. Simply ask the students to repeat the pronunciation out loud. Then provide suitable feedback to the students in the form of a written or audio comment. Consider asking the students to complete this task the day before the vocabulary is formally introduced in class. In this way, students can come to class already prepared to use the vocabulary with classmates for more communicative-oriented tasks. Furthermore, if students complete this activity individually at home, the anxiety of pronouncing unfamiliar words in front of classmates will be eliminated. Consequently, students will feel more comfortable using the words while interacting with peers.

In an upper-level course, such as advanced communication or an introduction to linguistics or phonetics, model standard pronunciation of discrete sounds in the target language via an audio-visual prompt on Extempore. Then ask students to produce these sounds themselves and provide appropriate feedback. It may also be a good idea to model suprasegmental features, such as intonation or stress. A task such as this will help call learners’attention to these often overlooked, but very important, features of the target language.