Before you start working on improving your English Consonants there is some important information you need to know. This tutorial will prepare you to accomplish unlevelled success for your pronunciation. You will learn my top 4 tips about how to learn English consonant sounds so that you don’t waste your time, going around and around in circles stressing over your pronunciation.
TIP 1.Know What English Consonant Sounds Are In Your First Language
“Aw Sarah, it is all wrong. I really don‘t get anything right.”
But when I do a full audit of their pronunciation, I usually find up to 60% of consonant sounds in error. Never 100%. Why is this? This is because we all speak our languages with the same speech machine! We all have a tongue, teeth, lips, voice, palate, nasal cavities etc., which means that all languages will have common consonants.
TIP 2Know What English Consonant Sounds You Produce Incorrectly
For example, let’s imagine I want to bake a black forest chocolate cake for my husband’s birthday. I keep thinking about how great it will be to surprise him and impress him with my beautiful creation. I imagine how wonderfully delicious the cake will look and how he will say, “Bella, this is the best cake I have ever tasted!” But then at night, when I go to sleep I worry about how i can get the cake right. How will I even manage to do the trimmings and make the mixture perfect so it’s fluffy and delicious? In the end I get so obsessed and stressed about my ability to make the perfect cake, that I don’t even check a recipe or know what ingredients I need, and then it is too late. By the time his birthday arrives I have to settle for a store bought cake.
You would never use this attitude to make a cake, right? So I challenge you to not let yourself use this attitude to make your pronunciation better. It’s logical, right? How can you get even closer to improving your English speaking if you don’t even know what you are doing incorrectly and you don’t even know what you need? Pronouncing English consonants is very concrete. Your either right or wrong. The problem is, when we learn our second language as adults, we don’t have the cognitive skill to work out what we are pronouncing incorrectly. This is where a personalised pronunciation audit is needed so that you can work systematically on correcting errors. You need the feedback and training from an expert in pronunciation before you can move forward, just like you need the best recipe to make a great cake. There is no point panicking about how to improve your pronunciation if you have no idea what is incorrect and what you need to learn. That’s like studying for a maths test without knowing the numbers or baking a cake with no idea about the ingredients. Ok, so you really want to perfectly pronounce English consonant sounds? I get that. There’s nothing wrong with aiming for a perfect score. But when it comes to improving your pronunciation, the best mindset to have is for “progress, not perfection” and a detailed blueprint or recipe for success.
TIP 3The Laws of Physics Can Help You Understand Consonant Sounds Better
✪ The International Phonetic Alphabet
✪ Cues and instructions around the air pressure, duration and mechanical adjustments in the mouth that you need to make to pronounce the sound correctly
Where possible we will also give you tips and tricks on how to get physical and visual feedback that you made a sound correctly. This might be through the use of a tissue (to measure air pressure), mirror work, straw work, air pressure contact against your hand, voice therapy techniques and tactile hand cues.
TIP 4The First English Consonant Sounds You Work On Should Be Those That Impact The Most On Your Grammar
✪ Frequent phrases
✪ Plural forms
✪ Prefixes and suffixes
✪ Core verbs and nouns in sessions with our team.
Your English consonants must reflect your language skill accurately. The worst thing is, if a speaker is held back by their consonant accuracy, when they have brilliant written skill. Your mouth has to reflect equally your abilities on the page and we will help you bridge any gaps there.
Is English Pronunciation Confusing To You?
What Do We Know About English Pronunciation & Accent Reduction Training at Voice Science?
Head to this link to enrol now in Your Personalised Pronunciation Audit where you can learn exactly what consonants you are saying correctly and which ones need some extra focus so you can drive your English pronunciation forward.
I will identify for you the main bottleneck you face that is stopping your speaking from improving and recommend the ways we can partner with you to solve it. Click the link below to enrol today! I Can’t wait to meet you, help you and support you!
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