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  • Today you are going to learn tips on speaking English like a native from studying how babies

  • learn to speak English.

  • I’ve been teaching English for over 10 years, but it’s only in the past year that I’ve

  • had the chance to watch my son start to pick up language.

  • He’s 20 months and his language skills are exploding.

  • I’m going to give you three tricks to help you study the language the way he is working on it.

  • Are you ready to go to play yard Stoney?

  • Are you ready to go?

  • Are you sure?

  • Uh-oh! What did you drop?

  • When a baby is first experimenting with language, it’s babble, la, la, la, ba, ba, ba.

  • Stoney had almost no sounds developed.

  • He had an AH vowel, and he had m, mama, and a B, baba, baba.

  • What he seemed to be imitating and playing with more than sounds was stress.

  • So many students get hung up on the sounds.

  • I actually think stress is more important.

  • Stress relates to rhythm and intonation.

  • These make up the feeling of English more than the sounds do.

  • Somehow, I don’t know how, he got obsessed with the songMambo Italiano’.

  • The chorus goes like this: Hey mambo, mambo Italiano.

  • At this point, he can kind of sayhey mambo’.

  • But he cannot saymambo italiano’.

  • Instead he says something likeHey Mambo....."

  • He really gets the intonation and stress down. It matches the song perfectly.

  • The sounds aren't there. But the feeling is there. It's the feeling of the sentence.

  • As he gets better with sounds,

  • as he learns them, hell go back and fill them in if he's still singing this song.

  • But for now, it's "Hey Mambo!"

  • Pretty amazing. A year and a half and he's matching the pitch and the stress.

  • This is something I encourage my students to do.

  • Think about not just the individual sounds but also think about the overall feeling of the sentence.

  • How are you?

  • Uhhh.

  • How are you.

  • The feeling is, everything connected, pitch changes smoothly, uuhhh, scooping up then down.

  • Uuuhhh. How are you?

  • Practicing sentences this way helps you practice the feeling.

  • Uh, how are you?

  • Uuuhhh

  • Are you willing to practice phrases that are just onuh’?

  • Babies are laying a foundation of the feeling of English for months before they put in all the details,

  • the finer pieces of the tongue movements and the sounds.

  • I think you should also be practicing English this way.

  • Sometimes, just practice the feeling of a sentence.

  • Uuhhhh. How are you?

  • Uuhhhh. How are you?

  • Tip #2: When I’m holding Stoney in my arm and his face is very close to me, it's right here,

  • I’ve noticed something. He looks at me like this.

  • Total concentration, focused in. He's staring right at my mouth.

  • My mom noticed this too.

  • She said, he watches my mouth so closely when I speak.

  • He’s curious, he wants the combination of the visual information along with what he’s hearing.

  • I think it can be incredibly helpful to study native speaker’s mouths when learning.

  • Every one of my sound videos has close ups of the mouth in slow motion,

  • and lots of my other videos do too, like one I did on linking with the TH.

  • I’ll put links to those videos in the description.

  • Sometimes I tell students to watch themselves in a mirror or make a video and watch that.

  • One of my students in my online school just posted a video to our Facebook group where

  • there was very little mouth movement happening.

  • And it’s hard for your English to be natural and clear when youre hardly moving your mouth at all.

  • When she went back and looked at it, she saw, oh yeah, I understand, I’m cheating the

  • mouth position of some of the sounds that use more jaw drop or lip rounding.

  • So focus in on the mouth of native speakers

  • and then pay attention to your own mouth positions as you're practicing sounds.

  • Tip #3: What do toddlers do that is incredibly annoying?

  • They say and do the same thing over and over and over.

  • In the park by our house, there’s a play structure with a fake raccoon face carved into a tree.

  • Stoney calls itaa-coonand asks for it constantly.

  • There are times where he probably says the word 20 times in a row.

  • Any parent or caregiver out there knows how much children repeat themselves.

  • This is part of learning, of building muscle memory,

  • building mastery, developing the fine and subtle changes in mouth position

  • native for speaking a language.

  • Repetition can not only help adults speak better English, but I would say it’s essential.

  • Let’s say your pronunciation isn’t very good.

  • You can learn how to pronounce something better, or how something should be pronounced.

  • For example, by watching videos on my channel.

  • But knowing something does nothing to change your body and your habit.

  • You already have strong muscle memory established as an adult.

  • Creating a sound that you don’t have in your native language, or creating a new

  • feeling of English is impossible without repetition.

  • Before I started teaching English, I sang opera.

  • In practicing, it would make no sense to sing the song from start to finish over and over.

  • You work in sections.

  • You pick out specific lines that are tricky, and you do them over and over and over.

  • Maybe you take the text away from the music and you practice that separately. Just sing out loud.

  • The point is, you break it down, and you work with it over and over and over.

  • You take a break, you sleep, and your body, your mind, does something with that.

  • It saves it.

  • And then the next day you come back and you work again.

  • So be like a toddler and practice the same thing over and over.

  • Let’s say 'comfortable' is a tricky word for you.

  • First, learn how to pronounce it.

  • I have a video on that.

  • Then play it and say it, play it and say it over and over again.

  • You can use a site like forvo.com, where native speakers have uploaded word pronunciations.

  • Play the native speaker, say it out loud.

  • Play the native speaker, say it out loud.

  • Do this 10, 20 times in row.

  • Once it gets really good, don’t stop.

  • That’s when you need to keep going!

  • To solidify the correct, natural way of doing it.

  • This repetition will help you get better.

  • So as a teacher of language, I realize I have so much to learn about teaching a language by watching my son,

  • a native speaker, learn from the beginning.

  • At one point in this video, I mentioned my online school. It’s called Rachel’s English Academy,

  • and I have thousands of audio files broken up and slowed down

  • so that my students can practice little bits of conversation with the play it, say it method.

  • It’s amazing. I’ll watch a student doing this, and I don’t even have to tell him what to fix.

  • Just by playing it and saying it over and over without stopping,

  • subtle changes happen, and it starts to sound so good.

  • If youre interested in learning more about the school, please visit RachelsEnglishAcademy.com

Today you are going to learn tips on speaking English like a native from studying how babies

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Learn English like a Baby How to Sound Native

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    cocola35 posted on 2018/04/15
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