Friday, October 21, 2016

The business of correcting and remembering pronunciation
Doing a workshop today on correcting pronunciation with Rebeka delaMorandiere, based on her recently completed MA Thesis at the BC TESOL annual conference in Burnaby, BC. The conference attendees are generally public school teachers, so the focus is on classroom correction strategies for key pronunciation problems. Will see about posting some version of the Powerpoint later.

One  new addition to the overall framework is the inclusion of a (somewhat) common sensical 5-point framework from Business Insider website piece entitled "5 strategies for remembering everything you learn". That, in turn, is based on a neat book, Make it stick: the science of successful learning that I have linked to in earlier posts. The key strategies, along with my read on the application to pronunciation correction, are:
  • Force yourself to recall (Before you provide a student with the correct pronunciation, see if they can do it themselves first.)
  • Don't go easy on yourself (Practice a new word or sound like mad, especially in homework.)
  • Don't fall for fluency (Just because a student can recall the right pronunciation or you can get them to do it in class, don't assume that the change will take without practice and conscious work on it.)
  • Connect the new thing to the old things (Very important to connect a corrected word or corrected sound to as many other words with it in it as possible. That can be done many ways, but it is generally essential for there to be consistent uptake.)
  • Reflect, reflect, reflect (Especially with older learners, from middle school on, research shows that they have to be meta-cognitively in the game, managing at least some of their practice and exploring ways of improving at their own initiative, or you may be wasting your time.)
That is a pretty cool list. Using the 5 tips. see how quickly you can memorize it . . . and recall it later!

And, of course, keep in touch!


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