Golden Oldies

The value of going back to “Golden Oldies” in lesson planning

Welcome to our first blog post on lesson planning! These blog posts were inspired by conversations we had during the writing of a new methodology and resource book on lesson planning, ‘Taking aim: Zeroing in on a great language lesson!’. So, what inspired this first post? Well, we think we cannot introduce or consider new principles and approaches to planning without revisiting existing ones. We work with in-service, developing teachers and sometimes experience some resistance to looking back at methods and approaches in ELT. “This is old. It isn’t relevant to me and my learners nowadays. I wouldn’t use this. I don’t use this.” All frequent comments, as well as, “Oh yeah, I had completely forgotten about that.” So with this in mind, we would like to argue that there is value in going back to the Golden Oldies of ELT. Yes, this could be interpreted as a slightly disparaging name, but it can also be seen as a sign of respect and gratitude to what is already out there and may have been forgotten. 
The more planning we do, the more prepared we will be for what comes up in the lesson is one way to approach planning our lessons. However, if we don’t stop to reflect we won’t necessarily develop in the direction we had in mind. Are we focusing on the right things? Why are we planning in this way? Sometimes looking back can help us realise where we are and what has brought us here. One of our first ventures into lesson planning was through Learning Teaching by Jim Scrivener. As he says, “I sometimes wonder if the key planning skill is an ability to visualise before a class how things might look, feel and sound when they are done in class.”  If we think of our recent experiences with team teaching for our other blog on pronunciation, much of what Jim says rings very true indeed. We  now spend much of our time visualising lessons during the planning stage, and even suggest this to our Dip TESOL candidates as an excellent planning method.  What does my board look like? What am I saying at this moment in the lesson? Where are my students and what are they saying? How do they feel? These are great questions to ask yourself as you plan a lesson. This example shows the clear value in Golden Oldies, and this is said with the utmost respect.
Our goal in this post (and in the first part of our book) is for teachers to get a bird’s eye view of their own planning and plot it in the history and current thinking of ELT methods, approaches and frameworks. If you are new to ELT it will help you understand planning approaches as new ideas. For the more experienced teachers among you, these might be old ideas revisited. Is it fair to say that for many teachers, after their initial training, they don’t really think about ELT methods and approaches? Well, we think that looking back like this can help you to see connections and patterns in these approaches so you can see how they respond to second language acquisition (SLA) theories and research. By understanding your practice better, you can make more informed decisions, consolidate your practice, feel more confident and create a basis for future learning. 
So, what are these Golden Oldies? We would include PPP, TBLT, Test teach test, ARC, ESA – Okay, they are not that old, but in the world of ELT, we might consider them as the standard ways to structure or frame a lesson. They are each based on theories about how we learn a language and we will go into this a little more in the book. For now, you can look them up if you don’t already know what they refer to. 
Now, if you have learned or remember what these methods and approaches are, we would like you to think about what part they play in your planning. As with all methods, we are or can be eclectic about what we take from them. For example, you might follow a PPP approach when you are teaching a key grammar point your learners need to work on or if that grammar point is assumed to be new to the learners. You might use TBLT if you want to engage learners in an authentic task which is relevant and motivating for them. This authentic task may also reflect an exam task they will have to do and you would like to evaluate what they can or can’t do. Maybe ARC and ESA serve as useful frameworks for measuring the quantity and quality of student talking time in a lesson – have you got the balance right between study, practice and use? You might also find that you have a different name for the R and the S in ARC and ESA and they are already a core part of your classroom practice. 
Now that you have considered how much of a part these frameworks play in your lessons, ask yourself the following questions. How many of these frameworks are you already using? Why do you use them, and in what situations? Which parts of which frameworks can you see in your day-to-day planning? How much is this a conscious decision depending on what you are teaching? What part do the learners play in how you plan your lessons? Is there anything useful from the frameworks that you have forgotten? If you are new to ELT, which of these frameworks would be the most useful to your current teaching context and why? Think about a lesson you are going to teach this week, how are you going to structure the lesson? 
These are all good questions to ask ourselves if we want to develop as teachers, and we would love to hear your answers in the comments here. We feel the value of going back to ‘Golden Oldies’ in lesson planning and evaluating them can help us understand more about what we do in the classroom and why we do it. It can also make us much more aware of how we teach and how our students learn. It may also serve as a kind of troubleshooter to help us evaluate our planning and give consideration to what goes on in any given lesson. And, you never know, it may well make us more receptive to new principles and approaches to lesson planning that can be added to the planning toolbox we already have.    


It’s as easy as ABT

Imagine you are teaching 8-10 year olds and this is the next language point in the course book you are using. In this post we will give some tips on how to prepare using ABT!

Taken from Gateway Gold level 6 grammar book 18/19, Garnet Education. 
So, what does ABT stand for? AnalyseBeforeTeaching
This is something you probably do a lot when you first start teaching- when your language awareness is perhaps more limited. In the lesson above, the language point is used to + infinitive. We use this to talk about habitual states and actions in the past. We often use it when we are contrasting something in the past with the present. The conversation extract above seems to be between a grandparent or parent and child. The older person is perhaps lamenting how life used to be better in the old days 🙂
To plan a lesson around this material we can start by analysing the language point to predict exactly what our learners will need help with AND what they might already know, or find easy. We can then select and design stages and activities that will be relevant and useful. 
For my Spanish speaking learners, they would find the meaning quite easy as there is a similar form to speak about habitual actions and states: Solía ir a la casa de mis abuelos en el verano (I used to go to my grandparents house in the summer). The form is also quite similar, isn’t it? This shows me I don’t need to focus on the grammar too much in this lesson. There is no need to plan a long clarification stage and I can be inductive in my approach and use contrastive analysis to show the similarities. Maybe a PPP approach is not the best option and a test teach test or task-based learning framework would work best. This would help the learners focus on how they cold use this language in relevant contexts and conversations. As we said in out first post we can be eclectic about what formats we use depending on the goals of the lesson and our learners’ needs. 
On further analysis, I think the pronunciation might be something to spend a little more time on. Spanish speaking learners tend to find it hard to use weak forms and if they see -ed at the end of a verb or adjective, they tend to pronounce it as an extra syllable. I use-ed to go. So, I think I would include a task where they listen and count the syllables and notice the weak form in “I used to go to …..”, followed by some drilling and practise in pairs. I think I would need to supplement the course book to include this focus. 
Also, I think my A2 learners might still have problems with the question and negative forms when using this language so I will make that a focus of my error correction, as well as pronunciation of course.
What aspects of this language point (used to + infinitive) might your learners find difficult in terms of meaning, form and sound (MFS)? Bearing this in mind, what type of lesson framework might work best? 
Analysing these three aspects as we plan a lesson can really help us go in prepared to focus on the key aspects, using an appropriate framework and including any extra tasks to supplement the material we have. 

Native Shmative

Of all areas of English language teaching, pronunciation seems to strike most apprehension and doubt into teachers. This can be even more acute when it comes to discussion around accent – our accents. Nicola recently supervised some research from a teacher about this. This teacher, let’s call her Rachael for the purposes of this post, interviewed her fellow teachers about their feelings and practice regarding their accent and teaching pronunciation. Rachael’s from New Zealand and has experienced some negative reactions to her accent over the years. Not only did the market want a “native” accent, it wanted a UK or US accent. This seems ridiculous, doesn’t it? We’re sure her lovely New Zealand accent is much clearer than many UK or US accents the market was asking for. Nonetheless she found herself reducing her natural accent to the point where it was hardly noticeable; almost unnatural. Maybe you have had this feeling too. This feeling is usually associated with teachers who don’t have English as a first language. However, our personal stance is that we all have accents no matter where we are from; whether we are native or non-native. All of these accents may cause intelligibility issues when using English as an international language. In fact we feel ‘native’ and ‘non-native’ are irrelevant terms today because our common goal should be mutual intelligibility. 

Here are two accounts from teachers we know who live in Barcelona and Ibiza respectively. We’d like to leave their voices as the main focus of this post. As you read their accounts, ask yourself this question; does any of this resonate with you?

Teacher one: Esther 


Not being native and wanting to be a good English teacher have affected me both positively and negatively. It is quite frustrating knowing beforehand that most of people still assume that just because English is your mother tongue the effect on students as teachers is going to be more effective than if you don’t have English as your L1. It absolutely feels as if you were about to run a race and your starting point was 25 meters behind the starting line. 

This is one of the reasons why I decided to work on my pronunciation once I knew I wanted to be an English teacher. I took a couple of courses with ‘funny’ names such as “accent reduction” or “sounding native” in a Pronunciation Studio. They actually helped me immensely and they really increased my self-esteem a lot. I could make myself understood better and also sounded more ‘English’. What kind of English? I didn’t know it at that time. 

After teacher training [on the Dip TESOL], I’ve been accepting this ‘role reduction’ and working on my strengths that, as you mentioned [me, Nicola], being a learner of English gives me. Teaching pronunciation from where I am now (I still have the feeling that I don’t sound like I would like to) is better than not doing it. Besides, I perfectly know the difficulties my students might come across and can deal with them better.

Helping students to think and reflect on the amount of accents of the English language has opened the doors to a diversity of sounds and have helped me to work my students’ receptive skills better. I’m sure this will contribute both to their tolerance and also to the acceptance of all of them equally.  My students don’t judge me for not being native, hopefully, their parents and the rest of the people will do it less day by day and I will be able to run the race sharing the same starting line as native teachers.  

Teacher two: Ana


To be honest, my first “contact” with pron work and the chart was during my training at IH back in 1995 (we had a fantastic NNS pron teacher) but it was after the Diploma Pronunciation modules that I started feeling much more confident about teaching pron. Tutors (Sinead Laffan, Mark McKinnon and Nicola Meldrum) helped me to stop feeling anxious about pron and the chart. It has been basic for me to learn the physicality of the sounds and their relationship. Adrian Underhill’s videos touring the chart have been an incredible tool, too.

I read a lot (Kelly, Underhill, Roach, Kuhl, Jenkins, and many others), I watched all Undehill’s videos and raised my awareness of the sounds and their physical aspect… and just started including pron slots in ALL my lessons (regardless of the age or level) systematically, not only to teach pron but also to train myself in the teaching of pron.

I think there is a misconception that links pronunciation to accents; at least in my context, strong accents are associated with a poor pronunciation… what a mistake! The Diploma has made me see I was so wrong here!

Once you get to pronounce English sounds accurately, to understand and reproduce intonation and speech features, accents are for the language like the dressing of a salad  🙂

As far as I know, there are more NNS teachers than NS English teachers worldwide and we’re all teaching, modelling a foreign language so it’s essential that we all improve our pron skills and then let our learners find their own intelligible accent, languages are for communication and as long as we are able to establish that communication, accents won’t interfere (my L1 is Latin American Spanish, I live in Spain, where there’s a different accent but this difference has never hindered communication).

I did my DRP (an action research project on the DipTESOL) on pronunciation with YLs (vowel sounds for the project but managed to work on all sounds before the course ended). The results fascinated me. I followed advice from you all and Underhill, helped my learners enjoy the physical activity of producing sounds properly, they saw the chart as a tool, a student-friendly approach to the chart (Underhill’s videos are priceless!) made them enjoy working with sounds (anecdote: I once had to leave the classroom for a few minutes and when I came back children were playing, they were copying phonemic transcriptions from their dictionaries for the others to “read/guess” the word).

We, teachers, pass our feelings on; ie, if we like/enjoy something, our learners notice it and frequently end up feeling the same way. I do love pron work and I believe in some way I transmit that feeling and that shows in the final results, my students are improving their pronunciation.  🙂

Being a learner myself has always been a fantastic way of making my students realise English is a language that CAN be learnt. It’s always facilitated rapport building and SS can identify themselves with me when I tell them all the difficulties I had to overcome when I was their age/level.

We know from over ten years of teacher training, this feeling affects many teachers, except those maybe with an RP accent or very neutral US accent. In this post we would like to suggest we ditch this view of accent entirely – whatever your accent, you can be a great pronunciation teacher. So we say: Native shmative! Let’s take Ana’s advice, love our voices and “let our learners find their own intelligible accent”. 

Note: Native Schmative /ˈneɪtɪv ˈʃmeɪtɪv/

For those of you who are not familiar with the ‘schm’ affix, we use it to mock something which we think is a bit ridiculous. For example, there is a film called ‘Football Schmootball’, which mocks the importance of football. The first letter of the word being mocked is replaced by ‘schm’ in the second word, as in ‘Native Schmative’. 

Nicola recently did a podcast for Garnet education which will be out soon here talking about this very subject. She discussed what teachers can do to feel more confident about teaching pronunciation if they have concerns about their accent. The interview was directed at teachers who don’t speak English as a first language, but it is relevant to all teachers. I’d also like to point out that We (Mark and Nicola) are Scottish and so don’t have a standard English accent and we write a blog about teaching English pronunciation…

There are also other interesting blogs on teaching pronunciation, for example, Laura Patsko and Katy Simpson, whose blog you can find here: and Marek Kiczowiak, who trains teachers on how to teach pronunciation in an ELF context

From TLT to TNT

In our last post We Talk Pron: TLT we proposed that by making certain stages of our lessons more communicative and giving our students more opportunities to speak, we can give ourselves vital opportunities to hear their output and therefore respond to it accordingly (Teacher Listening Time). This means giving more space in our plan for student talking time and more space to do something with what we hear. This planning idea can be used in general terms in the context of any lesson, but it can also help us integrate more relevant pronunciation work into our lessons, which is often what teachers tell us they would like to do.

What is TNT?

In this post we would like to focus more on what to do during our feedback stages. We see the note-taking stage during the communicative activities as the time when a teacher should be able to notice what the students need and make a decision on how to respond to those needs. For instance, assessing their pron output, identifying what the students might need to work on and improve, or even recognising when positive feedback on their pronunciation could be beneficial to the group as a whole. We call this Teacher Noticing Time (TNT).

Using the lesson plan from our last post we saw that the warmer allowed the teacher to listen for examples of good pronunciation and also pron problems common to the group. Stage two focused specifically on target language therefore allowed the teacher to put an emphasis on the pronunciation of this language in delayed feedback – the ‘S’ stage from MFS. In stage three the students were interacting directly with the teacher so the teacher could react to problems on the spot and encourage self and peer correction with target language. Stage four was clearly a learning stage in which the teacher introduced a new feature of connected speech (C-V Catenation) and designed an activity to allow students to predict and discover, which is in theory more memorable. The final communicative activity allowed the teacher to stop midway through and coach the students – helping and encouraging them to apply what they had previously learned. What we saw in this lesson plan was that the teacher had a very clear focus on what the students needed at each stage, which was also different each time allowing for good variation in the practice.

Identifying what our students need

When we design an activity we always know what the aim of it is, so this can help us in advance to identify what we expect the students to produce in terms of language and consequently pronunciation. If it’s a warmer or an authentic communicative activity at the start of the lesson the students could produce pretty much anything in terms of language. In these cases, as we’ve discussed before, we could listen for pronunciation errors common to all of the group if it’s a monolingual group or errors common to a particular group or groups within a multilingual group. We could also use this opportunity to predict what specific language may come up and what sounds certain L1 groups could have problems with. To do this, of course, you need to have some working knowledge of the students’ L1. This type of activity also lends itself to bringing out the positive by giving them examples of good pronunciation you have heard. The whole class feedback stage is important here because although you have heard some of the students pronounce well, it’s vital that the rest of the group get to pick up on this. It’s also a good way of fostering a “we can learn from each other” atmosphere within the group, which is always positive.   

While, we say above that anything could come up in freer speaking tasks, we can anticipate what our students will say by visualising them doing that task and “hearing” their voices as they work. As we said in the previous post on FFP, if we predict where our students will go with a task, we can plan more effectively for feedback. The feedback can address general pron issues but it should ideally focus on aspects which will be used again in that lesson. This idea can create some kind of criteria for TLT, and that will help us be selective about what we feedback on. We can notice relevant vocabulary the stronger learners use, which can shared with the lower level learners, or we can identify vocabulary gaps in the stronger learners which we can fill. Within this language we can focus on pronunciation as well as meaning and form in our feedback. We know what we are listening for and this makes our noticing time much more effective, easier for us and leads to better feedback for our learners.

If the activity is controlled in order to practise target language, our noticing time is more straightforward. When planning a lesson, ask yourself the following question: What problems would my learners have when listening to or attempting to say this language? We can then predict the types of problems they may have in advance and design possible feedback activities to deal with them.

Building our teacher toolkit: What type of feedback?

Example one: Working with target language


In this example B2 students were working with new body vocabulary (body verbs) and reacting to reading a text on the topic of gestures.

During a speaking activity in which students were testing each other on target language several problems came up. Some students knew what word their partner was referring to in L1 but not in English (a meaning problem), some were unsure of the spelling although they could say the word (a form problem), others had problems pronouncing the word although they claimed to know it (a sound problem). Later others were confused with some words from the text which were similarly spelt and brought this up at the end of the activity.

I clarified ‘frown’ in the way you can see in the above board example. I expressed the importance of knowing the meaning, form and sound of any word in order to truly know it – referring to our MFS model from a previous post. The students then formed small groups and worked on the examples in the right-hand column above; ‘quit, quite, quiet’, ‘stare, stair,’ and then the two pronunciations of the word ‘row’. They wrote a definition for each word, helped each other with the spelling and the correct pronunciation. This activity allowed them to write down the meaning, form and sound of each word in their notebooks. As a follow-up activity each group of students chose 5 words from the list of body verbs and wrote an MFS description for each of them as in the board example above. They then conducted a quiz with another group. Typical examples of questions were:

This word means to signal with your finger. What’s the word? (meaning/ sound)

How do you spell it? (form)

What does ‘shrug’ mean? (meaning).

How do you spell it? Etc.

To allow the students time to do this I really needed to plan time for the feedback stage. I had planned for 10 minutes but in the end I allowed them 17 minutes  to complete the activity satisfactorily. I felt that within the context of the lesson this was vital work therefore deserved more time than I had originally planned. As the saying goes, ‘teach the learners, not the plan’.

Example two: Monitoring an authentic communicative activity


This was a free practice speaking activity in which a group of B2 students were trying to find others who shared the same opinion as them on the topic of the country’s media.

We had worked on media vocabulary and had also worked quite extensively on the topic, so I expected some strong output in terms of language, especially media lexis and its pronunciation. I was also expecting some problem areas although I wasn’t 100% sure which. However, I was prepared to deal with them. In the end the students had some pronunciation problems with lexis that was very similar to the corresponding words in their own L1. I listed examples of words some of them had pronounced very clearly and drew everyone’s attention to this. I decided to use phonemic script as it made the sounds much clearer to my Spanish/ Catalan speakers. I also decided to experiment with font size and bubbles to express word stress, which is very important for these learners – both Spanish and Catalan are syllable-timed languages whereas English is a stress-timed language. Not everyone was confident with the pronunciation of these words so this allowed everyone to get some more practice and improve. I asked those who were struggling to try to imitate those who could pronounce clearly. This also produced some moments of laughter, which they really enjoyed. I listed problem words on the right and organised small groups of four to decide what the correct pronunciation was. This meant the students had to say the words out loud to each other several times to finally come to a group consensus. They also had to choose a spokesperson to feedback to the whole class; this often made the groups hold mini contests on who was the best at pronouncing the words and inevitably allowed for even more repetition of the target sounds as well as adding a nice competitive element.


Again as in the examples of the good pronunciation I followed up by demonstrating the correct pronunciation, emphasising word stress and drilling chorally and individually.

Example 3: Challenging strong advanced students

Sometimes we have strong groups of advanced learners whose pronunciation is really quite good. Can they really improve on that? Have they in actual fact reached plateau? What challenge can we bring to the classroom in terms of pronunciation?


Another way of approaching this activity with the type of learner described above, is to present it as an ‘improve your accent’ type of task. These ‘problem’ words, although intelligible to the average ear, tend to have a little bit of L1 influence. In our case the words in the example above are either very similar or exactly the same in Spanish and Catalan, so they can still present a challenge for students as they try not to pronounce them as they would in L1. The students form small groups as in example 2, but this time the challenge is to improve their accent and try to eliminate any L1 influences on the words. The students form mini panels from within the small group to decide how well individual students can say certain words on a scale of 0-5 – this encourages peer correction and peer teaching. The feedback stage concludes with a ‘How good is my accent?’ type of presentation. You can make this competitive too depending on the group. In our experience it usually injects a little humour into the practice.


As we can see from the above examples our feedback stages go way beyond pointing out errors and correcting them. Feedback can also include praising good pronunciation and giving others an opportunity to acquire it from their peers. These are also very hands-on stages of the lesson which follow an inductive approach to feedback. This inductive approach is appropriate for pronunciation work as it involves the students working with each other to achieve a goal. The learners need time to work on the sounds, they need a task that allows them to work it out for themselves, test what they think they already know, and practice with their peers before feeding back to the teacher and the whole group. This is more memorable for them, is much more likely to stick, and creates conditions for pronunciation acquisition. A deductive approach would not be appropriate here as  asking the students to listen to the correct pronunciation and repeat it after you would probably be very quickly forgotten.

We Talk Pron: TLT

I am sure all of you have heard of STT versus TTT. On initial teacher training courses there is often an “increase STT and reduce TTT” comment, and often for good reason. As new teachers we tend to think we need to explain a lot. This of course changes over time and we learn how to move towards a more inquiry based approach, we develop lesson planning skills and adopt a more inductive approach to teaching.

In this post we want to introduce and focus on a different acronym; TLT and consider how we can use it to teach pronunciation more effectively. Reflecting on this will help us develop our teaching generally. The examples in this post will help you think of other moments in class when you can utilise these skills to teach in a more purposeful, controlled and effective manner. So, what does TLT stand for? Can you guess? Yes, it is Teacher Listening Time! As Chia Suan Chong says in an article for ETp Magazine we need to start listening more to our learners.

This article has lots of great ideas, but one key shift needs to happen in our planning before we can develop our active listening skills as teachers. We need to make more space for student talking time. We need to design lessons which give students plenty time to engage with each other so we have something to listen to. Then, we also need to make space to do something with what we hear. You can find out more about this in another post of ours FFP – this is basically making stages in your lesson devoted to developing language in feedback slots.

To demonstrate this, read the lesson plan below and consider the following two points:

  1. How can each stage be more communicative, if at all?  
  2. What can a teacher listen for during this stage?

STAGE ONE – Warmer

The teacher asks the class some questions about family and relationships. For example, ‘Have you got brothers or sisters?’, ‘Are you married?’, ‘Would you like to get married?’, ‘How many children do you have?’, ‘Would you like to have children?’ etc. Students answer the teacher’s questions.

STAGE TWO – Presentation of topic

The teacher draws a relationship journey line on the board and places the following headings at each stage of a possible journey, for example, ‘single’ and ‘engaged’. Then continues to place the other stages on the journey line, ‘engaged’, ‘married’, ‘divorced’ and ‘widowed’ explaining what each stage means.

STAGE THREE – Introduction of target lexis.

The teacher now goes back to the first stage and writes phrasal verbs related to relationships at each stage and explains what each means. For example, ‘go out with’, ‘fall for’, ‘fall out’, ‘break up’ etc.

STAGE FOUR – Pronunciation (catenation)

The teacher says each phrasal verb and asks the students to repeat. The teacher then explains that that if the verb ends in a consonant sound and the particle begins with a vowel sound, they will join together and possibly sound like one word. The teacher elicits which verbs and particles will join from the list on the board and then leads some choral and individual drilling of each phrasal verb.


The students complete a matching activity in which they match each phrasal verb with its definition. This is followed by a gap-fill activity which requires the students to complete the gaps with the phrasal verbs from exercise one.

STAGE SIX – Communicative activity

In pairs the students create a story from a series of pictures using the target lexis. Each student will make a new pair with a student from another pair and tell each other the story they have created.

STAGE SEVEN – Reflection

Students discuss in small groups how the story compares to their own culture and their own and their family’s situations.


Now look at our answers to the two questions on each stage. Here we look at giving the students more time to speak and consider what we are going to listen for.

STAGE ONE – Warmer.  The teacher’s TTT seems rather high and this doesn’t look justifiable. The students could complete this in small groups to provide an opportunity for TLT in which teacher picks out pron difficulties common to the group and assesses their current vocabulary range.  As the teacher monitors they can write good examples the stronger students use and also identify potential vocabulary gaps and write language to fill these gaps on the board. Then, there is a 5-8 minute feedback stage where the teacher goes over that language. For example, students in Spain might struggle with the pronunciation of -er endings in brother/sister/partner. This could be checked after the discussion.

The teacher writes words on the board like the example below and asks, “What is the correct stress?” What is the correct vowel sound?” and demonstrates the pronunciation. Students answer and then the teacher drills the correct pronunciation and asks students to make sentences using the words and tell their partner – here we can encourage peer feedback and correction. And, we can listen again quickly.   Delayed feedback stage.


STAGE TWO could also be interactive – in small groups or pairs they can place the words on the ladder and discuss why each word is in its specific position. Groups and pairs compare ladder positions and must make changes so all ladders are the same – this will involve a debate, justifications and agreement to change. TLT here is to listen for pron difficulties with the target language and respond to it in a similar way to stage one, where pronunciation of -ed endings in engaged, married and divorced might cause issues in this case. The teacher writes the problem words on the board and elicits the correct pronunciation of the first one and drills. The students write the other words next to the phonemic script and agree on the correct pronunciation in pairs. This gives the students time to work on problem sounds and the teacher has an opportunity to drill and give them confidence.  Delayed feedback stage.


STAGE THREE could be led through teacher questions instead of explanation so they can assess understanding and not assume students don’t know the meaning or pronunciation of the phrasal verbs, e.g. Can you give me an example sentence or question with go out with?  Can you give me a synonym for fall for? Then, the whole class ask the teacher questions using the phrasal verbs. Then, the teacher asks students to create drawings for the verbs and in groups they decide where they should go on the line. This gives the teacher another opportunity to listen to their pronunciation and use of the vocabulary. TLT here could deal on the spot with intelligibility issues where the teacher insists on all language being intelligible for the 5-minute period of the activity and elicits self-correction as they monitor the groups. Immediate feedback stage.

STAGE FOUR could be a receptive listening. Teacher gives one example of C-V catenation and explains why this happens – the students then predict which ones will link in pairs, before listening to check. The pron point could also change completely and deal with stress patterns, for example. TLT opportunity could be a productive stage in which students are dictating in some way, see the Pronunciation Journey activity from Pronunciation games by Mark Hancock for a nice idea on how you can do this by adapting that activity to your given pron point. The TLT is clearly dealing with the target pron – catenation or even word stress. Teachers monitor and assess pronunciation and respond by writing persistent problems on the board. They can also prompt self-correction in an unobtrusive way with facial expressions and gestures to indicate there is an error. Immediate & Delayed feedback stage.

Example feedback board work


Pronunciation Journey – Mark Hancock

STAGES FIVE AND SIX already offer plenty opportunities for TLT. The challenge is usually what do we correct and feedback on when students do longer speaking activities. The answer in this lesson, is all the language you have drawn their attention to so far in the lesson, including meaning, use and pronunciation. Ideally, feedback and delayed correction would not come at the end of the lesson but between the two final discussions. We call this sandwich feedback. By feeding back in this way we can also include focused language work which the students have an opportunity to use again in the second part of the task. Sandwich feedback stage.

Ideas for correction

The Role of Correction in English Teaching – Lindsay Clandfield and Duncan Foord 

By planning with TLT in mind we can anticipate what our learners will already know, what they will have problems with and most importantly go into the lesson ready to respond to it all, with an increased focus on pronunciation. By doing this we can build our teacher toolkit for working on pron.

Teachers talk pron 2: Galina talks research

This is the second in our new series of posts where we invite teachers to share their experiences of developing how they teach pronunciation. If you would like to be featured just let us know!

In this post, we invited Galina to discuss her recent ventures into teacher research. Doing self-directed classroom-based research is a great way to reflect and develop. I asked Galina to send me some images of her board work to help illustrate what she is doing and in the videos we explore two examples. She also gives us some background on the research she is doing and why she decided to focus on pronunciation. Hopefully this will inspire you to do some research in your classes to develop how you teach pron!

Thanks Galina! You are a real pron star!! See below for some follow up comments from Galina on what she did.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Galina has this to say about her recent experiences with pronunciation teaching:

“I had a few illusions about Pron work before the Dip which were completely dispelled by the course and the DRP that I’m undertaking now

My illusions were the following:

1) Pron work is best for Young learners;

2) Pron work is always boring for Adult learners;

3) The knowledge of suprasegmental elements (prosody) is daunting and not interesting for GE Adult learners. Moreover, I don’t know how to make it doable, interesting and fun.

4) The knowledge of suprasegmentals (features of connected speech such as linking, elision, reduction etc) is necessary only for ESP and EAP learners.

5) If you do Pron work, you should spend a lot of time on it, 5-6 minutes each lesson is not enough.

6) Pron work is not connected with listening and can’t be part of a listening procedure.”

We think this shows that the research she has done is really changing her approach and building her confidence in how she works with pronunciation. In the next post we will talk more about Galina’s research and Mark and I will be returning to talk about pron. We will share some other ideas you can take into the classroom as well as helping you to develop your knowledge of Phonology!

Teachers talk pron 1 : Owen King

This is the first in a new series of guest posts from teachers we have worked with. Mark and I are teacher trainers on a Diploma course and also do other teacher training F2F and online. Owen is more than halfway through his Dip TESOL course and has very successfully passed his teaching practice and phonology interview. When he came to Barcelona in the summer to do his teaching practice he spoke about how one of the biggest transformations in his teaching is how he includes pronunciation in his lessons now. I quickly saw this from his lesson plans and teaching. It was lovely to observe. Mark and I asked him to contribute to our blog so we can share his development and inspire our readers to get more involved with phon!

Owen King

owen 2

“How the Trinity DipTESOL changed how I teach pronunciation”


Before undertaking the Trinity DipTesol late last year, I honestly had no clue about the basics of phonology, let alone how to teach pronunciation effectively to my students. Sometimes I might have drawn upon my knowledge of my students’ L1 to write a word how they would pronounce it in order to save time and get on with the lesson, but looking back this wasn’t really of any benefit to the learners as they never got to practise or improve their pronunciation.

Before signing up to do the DipTesol, I was most worried about the phonological focus the course had and, of course, having to learn how to decipher those scary-looking symbols that make up the IPA. Whenever I saw pronunciation activities in course books, I would just treat it like any other activity; “teach” it, do it but never really bringing the activities to life or using the IPA or other tools to enhance the learning experience. I had used drilling techniques with younger learners but I had no idea how to utilise it with teenagers and adults.



I think that everything I had learnt in the phonology modules on the online part of the course really began to click during the face-to-face module. Being able to see the tutors and other teachers integrate phonology into their lessons and to be able to share ideas about teaching pronunciation and talk about past attempts, or in my case the lack-of, brought everything together for me. I guess I had learned a lot through reading, learning the chart and so on, but I think being able to spend time in an environment like the one the face-to-face part of the course provides helped me a great deal in consolidating everything and putting the skills and techniques into practice.


What I do differently

After completing the Diploma course, the way I approach teaching pronunciation has changed considerably. Mostly, I’ve become more responsive to integrating pronunciation into my lessons and react in a more effective way to how I deal with emergent pronunciation issues in class. While before the Dip when planning classes I could anticipate problems the learners may have had with the target language, I wasn’t really sure how to deal with “on-the-spot” errors. Now, I am better equipped to deal with whatever pronunciation challenge crops up in the lesson and I find that most of the useful pronunciation teaching, and which benefits the students more, tends to be reactive; something I would probably still be dancing around rather than dealing with if it hadn’t been for the Diploma course.



As well as learning different techniques and overcoming my fear of drilling pronunciation to adults, one of the most useful aspects of phonology I learnt on the course was how to incorporate the physiology of pronunciation into my lessons. Learning about how each of the sounds are produced has made a huge difference to how I teach pronunciation to my students and to how effective it is for them, too. Being able to show the students what is happening when producing certain sounds, and also having the confidence to do so thanks to the Dip, has helped me teach pronunciation in a more effective and engaging way.

I also find that now the way I approach teaching pronunciation is fresher; more interesting for both the teacher and the students. Mixing it up by using different techniques (substitution drilling, transformation drilling, back-chaining and using props such as rubber bands for sentence stress etc) keeps it interesting and allows for more creative teaching and is of more benefit for the students as it’s not the same process each time.

Before the Dip, I used to sometimes write a word as my students would say it in their L1 to save time but now I look to see if I can make connections between the two languages to enhance the pronunciation teaching experience rather than just tell them how it should be pronounced. For example, a word that always causes problems is colleague. When this came up in class recently, instead of just getting the student to listen and repeat, I got them to make a connection to their L1. I wrote the words La Liga on the board and asked them to say it. Then I erased the La and the final a in Liga and then asked them to say it. Then I got them to make the connection and apply this to the word colleague.

Since the Dip, pronunciation has become something I no longer ignore and it has become an integral part of my lessons.

Learners talk pron 1: Toni

“La cancioncilla – se te queda” (The tune sticks in your mind)

Watch the video below of Toni talking about the impact learning English with integrated pronunciation work has had on him as a student. Listening to his reflections is hugely satisfying for us. Toni has been Mark’s student for two years now. He told Mark, AKA “the pron guy” to his students, that he has really felt the improvement in the last two years with his work on pron. Before this, with other teachers, he had the meaning and the form down but not the sound. Teachers made him listen and repeat – that was about the extent of it; all that meant was that he said the same thing louder but not necessarily better!

As you watch the video, notice the categories we created to signpost his comments, and think about how his reflections resonate with you and how you teach pronunciation.


Perhaps the most pertinent and repeated comment is about the importance of musicality. Pronunciation has made learning fun and memorable. Zooming in on pron has created a sense of the “cancioncilla” (tune) of English, in effect it helped language stick, like an earworm.

In a previous post on MFS, we spoke about the importance of isolating sound and making space for work on sound as well as meaning and form in lessons. This special focus has obviously made an impact on Toni as he repeatedly speaks about the way forgetting about meaning and form and just considering the sound of English has been novel, memorable and enjoyable for him. For the first time, his teacher has shown him how musical English is and working on this has helped Toni engage with language in a whole new way; a motivating way.


Many teachers shy away from this altogether, especially at levels higher than elementary. However, Toni mentions the fun factor! He remembered examples of front and back chaining – chunking. He feels and hears the sound of the language – separate from the meaning and form, as we said earlier. We need to isolate the sound in tasks and effective drilling is one key part of this. A big takeaway for us is that Toni recommends we don’t shy away from individual drilling. Many teachers don’t want to put learners on the spot, afraid they will feel uncomfortable. Toni reminds us that it’s essential for the teacher to hear each learner in order to know they are getting it right. If we are going to drill, we need to do it effectively and with the intention that every learner will get it right. So, let’s consider drilling for a moment and the different ways we can do it.

The choral drill – the teacher says something and all the students repeat.

The individual drill – the teacher says something and an individual student repeats.

Change your voice with choral and individual drilling – the teacher says something in a: low voice, high voice, loud voice, quiet voice, happy voice, sad voice, excited voice, boring voice, whisper, mumble, silent drilling (only the physicality of the sounds is visible) and the students repeat in the same way.

The substitution drill – the teacher says a sentence and the students repeat. With each repetition the teacher suggests a different word each time. The change can be made using flash cards or a simple command from the teacher. This is good for practising suprasegmental features of phrases and focusing on target vocabulary at the same time. Example: “What did you do last night?” /wɒʔ dɪʤʊ duː læs naɪʔ/ The teacher wants to practise the sentence stress of the question O o o O O O, and some connected speech like assimilation between “did” and “you”, the elision of /t/ in ‘last’, the presence of glottal stops in ‘what’ and ‘night’, as well as the target vocabulary – ‘time phrases’. The teacher substitutes last night each time with yesterday, last week, last month, last Saturday, two days ago etc. We can also substitute the verb or the question word each time while consistently repeating the rhythm and target features of connected speech.

The chain drill – the teacher asks a student a question and the student answers. Then this student asks the next student the question and the next student answers, and so on. This is effective for practising structures such as past simple questions/ answers with regular verbs etc.  

Back chaining/ chunking – the teacher starts from the end of the sentence and works back. This is effective for longer utterances with connected speech, for example, ‘If I were you, I’d do it’ /ɪf aɪ wə juː w aɪd duː w ɪt/.  So we could start with /ɪt/ then /w ɪt/, then /duː w ɪt/, then /aɪd duː w ɪt/, then /w aɪd duː w ɪt/, then /juː w aɪd duː w ɪt/ , so gradually building back to drill the complete utterance.

Front chaining/ chunking – like back chaining, but the teacher starts from the beginning of the sentence and works forward. This is effective for longer utterances with connected speech and allows the teacher to concentrate on and isolate sections (chunks) of the utterance, for example, the sections of the above utterance with the intrusive /w/ linking sounds.

Split drilling – the teacher divides the utterance up between several students or groups of students and the student or group repeats their part. For example, the left side of the group repeats /ɪf aɪ wə/ and the right half repeats /juː w aɪd duː w ɪt/. Then they can exchange parts. You can make this fun by changing the groups, for instance, boys and girls etc.

Recently, we did some drilling with teachers in a workshop and asked them to tell us how they felt, as human beings, while being drilled. Did they enjoy the gentle drilling with Nicola sitting down and drilling in a low voice, using gestures and being super encouraging and supportive? Or, did they prefer Nicola standing and being full of movement and energy? It was a split. Teachers appreciated that drilling does not have to be sergeant major style. It can be gentle with the teacher coming down to the learners level. We also drilled them and coached them at the same time on physicality with the individual sounds /ʌ/ and  /ɑː/. Did they appreciate Mark asking (as opposed to telling) them in what position their tongue was and telling them where it should be? This produced great discussion and debate on tongue position. The teachers agreed that it was different and almost certainly memorable, and could imagine this being useful for students.


Just like in L1 – enunciating and getting better control of your mouth will make you clearer. Toni helps us to reflect on the idea that pronunciation is relevant to all levels. We can’t guarantee learners are clear speakers in their L1! They need to open their mouths and sound clearer, even in L1,  and we can help them do this in English with more work on pron! Toni enjoyed the work with smiley faces (lips spread) and sad faces (lips neutral), saying how it made the pron memorable for him – attaching movement and emotion to pron work.

Personal development

After hearing and feeling sound in isolation Toni felt it useful to go back to seeing the language. He could then try and work to connect the written and physical (the sound) and try to use logic to figure out the patterns and connections between how words look and sound. He enjoyed grouping words together according to their sounds, spotting spelling combinations and their sounds, and grouping words with problem sounds.

Through all this he developed his awareness of English pronunciation and also became more autonomous in his pron learning, seeking out answers and monitoring his progress.
For us, one of the key things from watching Toni was this idea that he had to move away from seeing language to hearing and feeling it before he felt he could really use it and feel comfortable and confident with it. Having done this, he can now really OWN IT!

We talk pron: FFP

We were very happy to present at Iatefl in Brighton this year. In the talk we reflected on some of the key outcomes and realisations from team teaching over the last 6 months at UAB Idiomes in Barcelona.

You may be wondering why two teacher trainers decided to teach together after more than 10 years of training together on a Trinity Dip TESOL course. Well, we decided to go into the classroom to test and reflect on some of the things we had heard from teachers and learners over these years. Things like, “sentence stress and connected speech are only really relevant to higher level learners”, a teacher comment. “Nobody understands me when I speak English.” “I don’t understand much when I listen to English.”; and “I know some English, I’ve studied it, but I can’t really speak it.” Some examples of student comments from needs analyses and feedback.

This collaboration was an excellent experience and out of it we have formed three guiding principles or key ideas to help teachers incorporate pronunciation into their lessons more effectively. We have already covered two of them in previous posts: MFS HERE and SLC HERE. You may remember MFP from your CELTA courses. But as a teacher recently posted on our Dip TESOL course,

“In order to help my students, I know I need to spend more time designing my lessons to include further work on pronunciation which will allow me to grow as a pronunciation teacher. In the “Teach Pronunciation” blog post titled, ‘I can’t speak English…& … MFS’, the teachers mentioned the term, ‘MFS’ (meaning, form, and sound).  I had learned about ‘meaning, form, and pronunciation’ (MFP) in my CELTA training class four years ago; however, I am embarrassed to say that I had totally forgotten about it until now. MFS or MFP is exactly what I need to focus on to help my students because they are successful to a certain extent when it comes to the meaning of words, although they do need help with using English definitions, and they don’t have too much of a problem with the form of words. But, what they need is to focus on the sounds because they rarely do this. They simply memorize the Chinese meaning and spelling of long lists of words without paying very much attention to pronunciation. More importantly, I need to impress on them the importance of having all three factors together in order for them to successfully produce the lexis they are learning.”

So, it seems that MFS is still very much a valid thing to discuss and bring to the forefront of teacher development. SLC helps you to build effective listening cycles and there was some great feedback on this after our conference talk at Iatefl. So, let’s turn to the third key idea.

As well as planning tasks which work on sound and listening in our lessons, we can also do more at the planning stage to help us address pronunciation more holistically, and effectively and with more confidence. Something we hear from trainee teachers at Diploma level is that they avoid pronunciation, or they feel they only address it quite superficially by engaging in some drilling – listen and repeat. As Toni, our star learner, said IN OUR VIDEO this is not enough. For learners to really feel the development they need to work on sound more thoroughly. Drilling is part of this but it not the only thing we can do. Some teachers say they avoid going further because they lack confidence from not knowing about that specific area of pronunciation and also from not having enough time in lessons.

So, this is where our next acronym comes in. FFP.  

This stands for feedback focused planning. This got a lot of interest in our last talk at Iatefl and seems like it might help you to build that confidence and make that time to address pron issues that come up in lessons. So, what does this mean?

Well, it means giving as much attention and importance to feedback in a lesson at the planning stage as we do to input, practice and use of new language. It means building in feedback stages to our plans and our lessons more frequently and reducing the time we spend on ‘getting through stuff’. By reducing the stuff we want to input and creating more space and time to respond, we can really help our learners acquire language more effectively – the meaning, form and sound.

Look at this lesson outline for a 90-minute lesson with a C1 Spanish-speaking adult group:

Lesson objectives:

  • To tell an anecdote about a bad travel experience
  • To use past simple and past continuous accurately and effectively
  • To learn, practice and try to use past perfect simple and continuous

Lesson outline:

Intro: teacher tells a story about a bad holiday experience modelling all the tenses using natural speech. Learners interact, interrupting and asking questions.

Present and review language: teacher dictates some sentences from the story. Learners write them down and compare notes. (teacher dictates in natural speech). Learners compare their notes with the standard written versions (with contractions)which are displayed on a board or on a handout. They correct the grammar and notice the differences with their versions and the correct versions. This helps the teacher to assess their knowledge of the grammar and to focus on the meaning and the form and the sound. It goes something like this…

1 The teacher asks for the correct form of the different sentences.

  • It happened in June 2012.
  • We were driving along the motorway.
  • We’d been driving for about an hour when I saw the exit and turned off the motorway.
  • We quickly realised we’d taken the wrong exit.
  • I stopped and reversed back up the exit and heard the sirens of the police car.

2 Learners correct their errors (work on form)

3 The teacher asks students to match the sentences to the correct use.

  • An action finished in the past, a sequence of actions in the past – one after the other.
  • A longer action which happened before and up to another action in the past.
  • An action which happened before another action in the past.
  • A longer action in the past – we use this to set a scene for a story often or to show an interruption with a short action.  

4 Learners match and compare their ideas and discuss what they know about these tenses and whether they are similar or different in their language (focus on meaning)

5 Learners correct answers and complete a gap fill using all four tenses. (focus on form and meaning)

6 Learners look back at the sentences they wrote from the initial dictation and compare with the written form. They listen again and underline parts which are different and consider what is different between how the sentences are spoken and written. (focus on sound and form)

7 Learners make their own sentences about a story from their life.

8 Learners practise saying their sentences to a partner.

9 Learners work in small groups and tell their stories and ask and answer questions about their experiences.

10 Teacher goes over errors they hear and learners self and peer correct.

End of lesson.

There is a good flow to this lesson and it focuses on MF & S. But, what pronunciation issues might your learners have in the latter stages of the lesson when they try and use the language? When is there time to address these issues?

At the moment all the feedback is at the end of the lesson and there is no opportunity for the learners to act on that feedback.

Also, after stage 8 – what if there are lots of issues? There is no planned time to address them. What might happen? The teacher tries to correct pron – but lacks confidence and also this means time for production is reduced perhaps because the correction takes longer than planned etc.

What if instead the teacher builds in feedback stages throughout? They can do this by visualising and hearing what their learners will say at key stages and anticipating what problems they might have saying the language (or hearing it). This feedback focused planning has two advantages:

Firstly, it means the teacher can prepare. If they think the learners will have problems with connected speech and they don’t know enough about this area of phonology to address it, they can do some research and preparation before the lesson starts.

Secondly, by building in feedback stages teachers are more likely to actually go beyond listen and repeat and will have time to work with their learners on errors in a deeper and more effective way.

Also, teachers will be able to assess progress more effectively in the lesson and will focus more time on listening to their learners, thus getting to know their problems (and strengths) better.

Where would you build in feedback stages in the lesson above?

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We talk pron: I can’t speak English… &…. MFS!

Over the winter we have been team (tag) teaching two groups at UAB Idiomes in Barcelona. In our last post, Mark Teaches Connected Speech, we spoke about teaching B1 learners connected speech to help their listening skills. We also wanted to explore teaching pron with beginner/ elementary students based on a recurring comment from the needs analyses from an A1 group, which we can sum up as something along the lines of; “I can’t speak English – I know it, I’ve studied it, but I can’t speak it.”  We also wanted to address some issues teachers have aired to us during our workshops and talks, namely that they were not sure what to work on with beginner/ elementary students, beyond individual sounds. Students at this level can be often starved of certain aspects of phonology such as connected speech and sentence stress, which can really support them with speaking as well as listening. We felt that we needed to feed in all of the pron the language may present from the very beginning with the idea that language and pronunciation are inseparable. AND as if this were not enough, we have come up with a new acronym which encapsulates everything we want to talk about on this blog…. MFS! All will be explained below.

As well as having problems with understanding spoken English, our A1 group find it hard to pronounce new language correctly.  In the lesson our communicative objective was to ‘order a meal in a restaurant’, as support for this our linguistic aim was to practice a set of food lexis connected to ‘starters’, ‘main courses’, and ‘desserts’. We really wanted the students to know the menu well and be comfortable using it in the communicative activity, so we designed a cycle of activities to practice meaning, form, and sound using the same lexical set.
We used a standard lunch menu from an Italian restaurant with the ‘starters’, ‘main courses’, and ‘desserts’ titles taken out.


  1. Matching – the first activity the students had to do was match the dishes to the titles by writing ‘starters’, ‘main courses’, and ‘desserts’ above the appropriate group of dishes. We provided clarification of vocabulary as support. This activity dealt with meaning and showed us the learners had got it!


Watch this video of Mark setting up the next activity with the A1 group. What do you think the objective/s of this activity are?


Definitions – we selected six words from the menu we felt would be new lexis for the students and created English definitions for them like a mini food dictionary. The students had to match the word to the definition by writing the word in the space provided in the worksheet.  In the second part of the activity they worked in pairs. One student read the definitions of the new vocabulary while the other, with the worksheet turned over, tried to remember the words. So, the objective here was to practice both meaning and form.


‘Easy/ difficult to pronounce’ – we asked the students to say each dish aloud with a partner, decide which words were easy or difficult to pronounce for them, and categorise the words accordingly. We asked the students to tell us which words they found difficult; we boarded these and worked on their difficulties. This allowed us to give them good practice with sound, and also to hand over the responsibility for pron to them. Recycling the same language with a different task and focus gave the students extra time to work on sound while becoming more comfortable with the target language. A big takeaway for us here was how much they enjoyed working on this lexical set. The change of task seemed to boost their confidence with the target language.  

Listen and write – we chose six words from the menu that had little connection between the written form and the sound, for example, ‘sauce’. All of our students speak Spanish which is a phonetically written language. They tend to treat each letter as a phoneme, which could result in them saying /saʊseɪ/ and not /sɔːs/. We dictated the six words to them and they listened and wrote the word they heard. This stage worked really well as it provided good work on sound and form. Students were more confident with the sound by this time, but the spelling (form) was challenging for them now.  

Memorise, remember and choosefor the final activity we asked the students to memorise the menu for one minute, turn it over, and remember it together using  ‘starter’, ‘main course’, and ‘dessert’ categories as a guide. As an extension to this they each chose a dish for themselves from each course. This activity allowed the students to practice meaning, form, and sound. The activity also brought out problem words in terms of pron immediately and we could deal with these through feedback after the speaking activity finished. ‘Vegetables’,  ‘chicken versus kitchen’, ‘grilled’, and ‘sauce’ are the examples.

We could see the students growing in confidence as the content from the menu became more and more familiar, and the big takeaway for us here was that they were producing the sounds with more confidence during the final activity. We also feel that by providing this practice cycle we could integrate pron into the practice more naturally.  By keeping the focus on one lexical set but changing the task each time, we gave the students ample time to work on meaning, form and sound as well as building their confidence with the target language.
So, let’s end with MFS. As you may have guessed from this post, it stands for Meaning, form and, sound (all 3 are required to be able to understand and use the language).  So, where did this come from? During another speaking activity one of the students tried to say that she had had ‘vegetables’ and ‘noodles’ for lunch. However, she was unable to tell her partner this because she didn’t know how to pronounce these words. Her attempt to say ‘noodles’ was unintelligible even for us. She explained afterwards that she had learned the word by translating the meaning and practising the spelling, however, this wasn’t enough to be able to communicate. This shows that she knew the form and meaning, but had no knowledge of the sound, which was the reason she was unable to communicate. It didn’t occur to her that this was part of learning the word.

We feel that to really learn a new word or piece of language the student needs solid practice in meaning, form, and sound. If we fail to provide practice in one of these areas, the student will be unable to fully understand and use the new lexis or piece of language. This would mean that we provide a minimum of three tasks to practice the target language. A meaning-based task, a form-based task, and a sound-based task, although some task types may practice two or three of these at the same time.

So, looking back at posts so far on this site and our overall goal of helping you to integrate pronunciation into every lesson, with the pronunciation cycle in the Glynn talks Spain post and MFS as guiding principles for your planning and teaching  you can ensure effective 100% integration of pron!