While I was hosting a workshop last month, several participants expressed that their children found their accent to be embarrassing. I am guessing this feeling of embarrassment is one that all kids have about something their parents do. My mom still likes to tell the story of when my family was shopping at Water Tower Place on Magnificent Mile in Chicago. The four of us were the last to enter the glass elevators. The doors closed. We did the standard turn-around to face the doors, and then much to our surprise, instead of going up, the doors opened on the same floor again. My mom cheerily said, “Hello again!” to the other people waiting for an elevator. Being a teenager at the time, my sister thought this was the most mortifying experience - talking to complete strangers! My mom loves telling this story because it proves how such little things can embarrass us.
Voicing is a term used to categorize speech sounds.
You can test this by putting your fingers on your throat. If you feel your throat vibrate when you say the sound, it is voiced. If you don’t, it is voiceless.
Let’s try it. Put your fingers on your throat and say, “B, D, G.” If you feel your fingers vibrate, that means these sounds are voiced. Did you feel them vibrate?..Yes, these are voiced sounds!
ALL vowels are also voiced.
Now let’s try to feel the difference between that and voiceless sounds. Put your fingers on your throat and say, “P, T, K.” You can’t feel your fingers vibrate, can you? That means these sounds are voiceless.
I am excited to announce that English Accent Tutor has recently been invited to speak to the Job Networking Club at the Washington Accueil Association on Friday, May 13th, 2016.
At this presentation, I will be discussing the following:
- How code switching can help individuals communicate more effectively
- Differences between Standard American English and French language systems
- American English sounds French people usually struggle to pronounce
- The process of changing an accent (accent modification)
- Strategies to help you change your accent
- American English intonation and stress patterns
- Helpful resources for people wanting to improve their accents
And much more
I want to thank Sybille Ozanian for inviting me to present.
I look forward to meeting those of you who will be attending!