Thursday, January 15, 2015

No (pronunciation teaching) experience . . . REQUIRED!

Got a comment on a recent YouTube video clip: "I'll admit that I am a doubter . . . I have never tried Bill Acton's method, but in my experience . . . "

Normally, I prefer doing teacher training with those who have not had too much phonetics or have not been teaching pronunciation using an "orthodox" method for too long. (I suspect that the commenter meets neither criteria!)

I try to avoid retreating to the post-modernist's ultimate cliche of "If you aren't an X then you can't possibly know or understand an X's method"--but in this instance, I think I will. Too often, criticism of this (experiential) system is from those who have never, will not or cannot try it. There are several posts that consider valid psychological, pedagogical and neurological grounds for those responses.

Admittedly, haptic pronunciation teaching (EHIEP) is for some experiential learning in the extreme. Buy in to the system is unquestionably so. Typically, if we can get a teacher to attend a workshop--or students to do the first three modules of the system, they're sold.

We are always working on ways to truncate that process, but so far it is inescapable: You have got to do some of this stuff to get it. For "Newbees," it should be a piece of cake; others should just try to tone down "fossilized" pre-frontal chatter and let their bodies figure it out for them--first.

"Train the body first." (Arthur Lessac)

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