Presentations Abstracts Barrett, Catrice University of Pennsylvania Music in the pronunciation classroom: Are all approaches created equal?

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Colantinio, Sandra (Chapman University)

Teaching French Language and Culture Through Phonetics

The aim of this presentation is to engage students in learning French culture and phonetics through music. This demonstration will be presenting, through Georges Brassens singing “Les Passants”, a way to teach the French silent ‘e’ for foreign language learners. This activity may be used for all levels and languages. It will include a “run-through” of a lesson plan that may be changed and utilized by any instructor. I will demonstrate this original idea with a French song, because I am a French instructor, and have used this to demonstrate the silent ‘e’ in French. Many foreign language learners of French have a difficult time in differentiating when to pronounce an ‘e’ at the end of a word. Through song, students will hear when this letter is silent and when it is pronounced for stylistic and phonetic purposes. The materials that will be used will be: handouts of a biography of the artist intended for students’ reading comprehension, a hand-out of the lyrics with blanks for students to fill out while listening to the song, and a Youtube video of Georges Brassens singing “Les Passants”. The biography will introduce students to the artist and place the work in the correct context, affording students the background necessary to correlate this activity with what is being reviewed in class. The fill-in-the-blanks of the lyrics increase student participation and attentiveness, while immersing the students in the target language. The Youtube video interests the visual learners in the classroom, to aide in oral comprehension. Instructors will leave this presentation with a skeleton of a lesson plan to take back to their own classes. This idea is simply a guide for others to change as need be for any language and for any level and topic.

Foote, Jennifer, Concordia University
Using portable mobile technologies for shadowing activities
As portable mobile technologies such as smart phones and tablets become increasingly ubiquitous, these technologies offer opportunities for pronunciation instruction. For example, activities that were once tied to the classroom can now be made available to learners anytime. One activity that can be enhanced with such technologies is shadowing. Shadowing is a technique where learners are given a speech stimulus, usually a recording, and are asked to speak along with the stimulus, copying the speech as accurately as possible (Luo, Shimomura, Minematsu, Yamauchi, & Hirose, 2008). This technique is often promoted for improving pronunciation, particularly suprasegmentals.

This teaching tips session will offer suggestions for how instructors and learners can create their own shadowing materials for mobile devices. It will also offer suggestion for how to easily create recordings of learners’ shadowing attempts. By recording and sharing shadowing outputs, learners can analyze their own speech, or share recordings with peers or an instructor for feedback. Apart from requiring learners to own a smart phone or tablet, no addition costs for software are needed. Using portable mobile technologies for shadowing also offers excellent opportunities for instructors who are looking for effective activities that learners can use outside of class for extra pronunciation practice. Suggestions on choosing shadowing materials will be provided as will tips for helping learners provide peer feedback and analyze their own recordings.

Luo, D., Shimomura, N., Minematsu, N., Yamauchi, Y., & Hirose, K. (2008). Automatic pronunciation evaluation of language learners’ utterances generated through shadowing. Interspeech 2008, 2807-2810.
Henrichsen, Lynn (Brigham Young University)
Video voiceovers for helpful, enjoyable pronunciation practice
Rehearsed speaking activities (Morley, 1991), such as memorized speeches, provide useful pronunciation practice that can focus English learners’ attention on accuracy and fluency. Recent research (Davy, 2013) has also shown the benefits of systematic, controlled repetition and imitation for improving L2 speaking skills. However, rehearsed, repetitive activities can also be boring for students—during both the practice and presentation stages.
Tracking is an activity in which English language learners listen to and analyze an audio or video model of speech and then imitate and reproduce it, speaking the same words simultaneously with the model. Tracking has been recommended (Celce-Murcia, Brinton, & Goodwin, 1996, Rosse, 1999) as useful for building English language learners’ fluency and increasing their awareness of prosodic features.
Video voiceovers combine the advantages of these two types of speaking practice in a fun, entertaining way. In video voiceovers, students first choose a short video clip from a movie, television program, commercial, YouTube®, etc. The clip must involve one or more characters speaking naturally, may be funny or serious, and should show the characters’ mouths moving as they speak. Students work individually or in small groups. After students have chosen their video clip and speaking parts, they listen to the clip multiple times, tracking, and paying careful attention to both segmentals and suprasegmentals, as well as pausing and pacing. After they learn their parts, students mute the audio. After sufficient rehearsal time—both in and out of class—students then present their clips to the entire class, speaking aloud while the muted video image is projected.
Class members watching these presentations find them entertaining, and the presenters find that preparing and delivering their video voiceovers in this manner helps them improve their speaking accuracy and fluency in an enjoyable yet effective way. Experience demonstrates that these video voiceovers are among the students’ favorite activities in their pronunciation course. This presentation will not only explain the pedagogical theory and procedures associated with video voiceovers but also show several video clips of students in an ESL pronunciation class presenting their video voiceovers.

Lima, Edna – Ohio University

Feel the rhythm! Fun and effective pronunciation practice using Audacity and sitcom scenes
The activity presented in this session is designed to help adult learners improve their perception and production of rhythm in English using Audacity. By creating appealing and useful activities that can be assigned as homework, teachers give learners the opportunity to practice more, work in a comfortable environment, and work at their own pace. Also, by using a script as the base for the exercises, teachers make the feedback process easier and more effective.


This activity was designed as part of a fully online pronunciation tutor focusing on suprasegmentals; it focuses on rhythm and prompts learners to “imitate” the provided model. Before being assigned this activity, learners watched two short instructional videos on how to download and use Audacity to record and edit audio files.

McCrocklin, Shannon - University of Texas Pan American
Automatic Speech Recognition: Making it Work for your Pronunciation Class


Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), the technology behind language learning technology such as Rosetta Stone and Burlington English, is also available through many dictation programs freely accessible on the devices that your students are likely to already own or have access to. Such ASR programs empower students to work on their pronunciation on their own, getting feedback based on the transcription provided by the program. This teaching tip presentation will introduce some of the programs available to teachers and students, ways of getting students started with the programs, and possible guides for working with the programs. Finally, the presentation will address some of the challenges of working with dictation programs for pronunciation work, providing ideas for resolving such issues.

Reed, Marnie - Boston University

The Sandwich Approach: The Secret to Attaining Unconscious Competence

Even fluent leaners may be unconsciously incompetent at segmental and/or suprasegmental phonology. A pedagogical approach is proposed that converts learners’ declarative knowledge to proceduralized knowledge, unconscious competence. Explication and practice are sandwiched between Teaching Talk, the succinct language of instruction, and learner Tell Backs to advance metacognition, self-monitoring, and automaticity.

As discovered by Derwing & Rossiter (2002) and confirmed by Foote, Holtby, & Derwing (2011), at early stages of acquisition, learners don’t know what they don’t know. They are, in short, at the unconscious incompetence stage of development. They may be inadvertently mispronouncing individual segments, adding or deleting sounds in syllable onsets or codas, stressing incorrect syllables in multisyllabic words, phrases, or sentences, or misusing or completely missing out on the pragmatic functions of intonation.

Consistent with DeKeyser’s (2007) transferability hypothesis, declarative knowledge can be converted to proceduralized knowledge. This paper proposes an approach that establishes, that is, imparts metacognitive awareness of the segmental and/or suprasegmental pronunciation targets via Teaching Talk that is succinct and therefore retrievable by the learners to use as Tell Backs for the purposes of internalizing the concepts and self-monitoring for accuracy. Like the PB&J sandwiched between layers of bread, explanations, examples, and ample opportunities for practice are sandwiched between layers of succinct, minimalist Teaching Talk.

Derwing, T.M., & Rossiter, M.J. (2002). ESL learners’ perceptions of their pronunciation needs and strategies. System, 30, 155-166.

Dekeyser, R. (2007). Skill acquisition theory. In B. VanPatten & J. Williams (Eds.), Theories In second language acquisition (pp.97-113). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
Foote, J. A., Holtby, A. K., & Derwing, T. M. (2011). Survey of the teaching of pronunciation in adult ESL programs in Canada, 2010. TESL Canada Journal, 29(1), 1-22.

Richards, Monica (Iowa State University)

Introducing a Suite of High-Interest Communicative Activities for Providing Learners' Concentrated Exposure to English Word Stress Patterns
A variety of resources and techniques for the teaching of word stress have been proposed in research articles (e.g. Murphy, 2004; Tanner & Landon, 2009), the pronunciation pedagogy textbook of Celce-Murcia, Brinton, Goodwin & Griner (2010), Fischler & Jensen's (2006) Stress Rulz, Carolyn Graham's various "jazz chant" books (e.g. 2001), and elsewhere. Many resources, however, target just a few of the most common instantiations of the most highly frequent patterns, with the result that L2 English learners rarely have enough exposure to most of the patterns to be able to apply them either unconsciously, through exposure-developed formulaicity, or analytically (cf. Wray & Perkins, 2000). They are therefore sentenced either to making frequent word stress errors or to the impracticality of continual resorting to a dictionary (Jenkins, 2000). This teaching tip presentation proposes an alternative by introducing a suite of high-interest communicative activities for providing learners' concentrated exposure to the English word stress patterns identifiable in Browne, Culligan & Phillips' (2013) New General Service List (NGSL) list of the nearly 3000 most frequent vocabulary tokens of English.

Schaefer, Vance

Darcy, Isabelle

Indiana University

A communicative approach and dialect exposure enhance pitch accent awareness by learners of Japanese
Pitch accent is important in Japanese: it constrains lexical access for native speakers (Otake & Cutler, 1999), is processed differently in the brain according to dialect (Sato et al., 2013), and viewed as a social marker (Vance, 1987). Yet, it is rarely taught explicitly in Japanese as a Foreign Language (JFL) classrooms (Shport, 2008). Non-target-like productions create an impression of a foreign accent – more so for suprasegmentals than segmentals (Sato, 1995, for L2 Japanese). Japanese learners have difficulties acquiring native-like pitch-accent patterns implicitly (Shport, 2008). Similarly to English (Johnson & Moore, 1997), the interplay of pitch and pausing might impact learners’ reading proficiency.
Such findings suggest a need for greater attention and a modified strategy to teaching pitch accent in JFL classes. This proposal advocates an approach based on the communicative framework prioritizing guided practice (Celce-Murcia et al., 2010), and enriched by less conventional methods such as dialect exposure. Following the guiding principle of a dual focus on both form and meaning at once (Segalowitz & Hulstijn, 2005), pronunciation is integrated into all skill activities (e.g., grammar, reading) to boost pitch accent awareness and facilitate more target-like (lexical) acquisition. Also, exposure to non-standard dialectal pitch-accent patterns (e.g., Kansai, Fukushima) should achieve greater metalinguistic awareness and improve perception/production of pitch accent (see Baker & Smith, 2010, for segmentals). To further dialog concerning pronunciation teaching in the JFL classroom, this presentation summarizes relevant L2 phonology theory and current pronunciation praxis and offers concrete examples of pronunciation activities that incorporate this dual focus.
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