You: Then how do you teach accents and dialects?
Me: Because you don’t have to be “good at accents” or have a natural ear for mimicking speech to teach accents and dialects.
There is a systematic process to teaching and learning accents and it’s the same process that I talk about in my intro workshop and teach in-depth in my teacher training program. Once you have learned my method, you can learn and teach any accent at all.
It really boils down to this basic premise:
An accent or dialect is a set of sound substitutions, rhythms, stress patterns, intonations, and vocabulary. To change an accent or dialect all you have to do is identify and replace the sound substitutions, rhythms, stress patterns, intonations, and vocabulary of the current accent with the sound substitutions, rhythms, stress patterns, intonations, and vocabulary of the goal accent.
Teaching a London accent or a New York accent really isn’t that different than teaching a General American Accent. The process of identifying and changing specific sound substitutions is the same. The sounds are different, but the process is exactly the same.
And you really should know how to teach more than one accent.
Well, there are many reasons but here are my top 3:
So please don’t underestimate your ability.
Yes, you have to study.
Yes, you have to practice.
But you don’t have to be perfect.
And like everything else when it comes to teaching, you will get better with experience.
So tell me, what different accents and dialects would you like to learn to teach?
Let me know by commenting below or posting in the Teachers School Facebook group.
I’d love to hear from you,
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