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New Strategy of learning English pronunciation
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Ningmareo Shimray *

 New Strategy of learning English pronunciation



INTRODUCTION TO A NEW STRATEGY OF LEARNING ENGLISH PRONUNCIATION
DEVELOPMENT AND APPLICATIONS OF THE CONCEPT OF SUB-SYLLABLES


Ningmareo Shimray
M.Sc/MA, B.Ed
Lecturer,
Ukhrul Higher Secondary School,
Ukhrul, Manipur, India.
Recipient of National Awards to Teachers 2021

INTRODUCTION TO A NEW STRATEGY OF LEARNING ENGLISH PRONOUNCING SKILLS

In early 2018, I conducted series of experimentations and found that the main hurdle of learning any subject/language of any standard is the lack of reading skills. The only way to overcome this hurdle is to learn pronouncing skills. Right from the beginning of the COVID-19 lockdown, I started writing a book to enable the students to overcome this hurdle by imparting pronouncing skills.

I compiled all the possible sounds of syllables and over 10,000 English words with all the possible syllables without using the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). Analysis of the syllables revealed that the syllable/sound of every alphabet has at least one letter - a, e, i, o, u, or y. And that every syllable has finite number of possible sound(s). And that the sound of every syllable is determined by the sound of the alphabet, sub-syllables and the parts of speech (especially verb, adjective and noun) of the words.

Towards the end of 2019, I developed the Concept of Sub-syllables for English pronunciation which is non-phonetic language. A sub-syllable is defined as an alphabet/letter or group of alphabet which forms a part of a syllable (if the word is multi-syllable)/monosyllable. The possible sounds of every sub-syllable is finite and that the sound of every sub-syllable depends on the meaning/origin and structure of a word. The sub-syllables include all the sounds of vowels (short/long/diphthongal/triphthongal) and consonants (voiced and voiceless).

The concept of sub-syllables is a new system for learning English pronunciation efficiently. It has enabled us to pronounce every word in an English dictionary correctly and easily. It demands that we learn all the possible phonetic sounds of the English alphabet (individually and in combination) which reflect all other English phonetic sounds. It indicates the silence of sounds while pronouncing some words. It identifies different words having the same pronunciation and different words with similar pronuciations. Significantly, it has enabled to write the spellings of all the English IPA.

The main problems of learning English pronunciation:
1. Ignorant that English is non-phonetic language.
2. Not knowing the sounds of English IPA.
3. Ignorance of the rules of syllabification of English words(multisyllables).

I have just developed a practice format suitable for every teacher and student of any standard for learning the sounds of the IPA from young age and also have formulated general rules of Enlgish pronunciation as an endeavour to give every English word a single pronunciation by applying the concept of sub-syllables and mathematics (which are reflected in the format). The main aim of the practice format which I have recently developed is to assist every learner to learn the sounds of English IPA even without knowing the symbols/transcriptions of IPA.

There were remarkable changes with the introduction of IPA in English pronunciation towards the end of 19th century and several revisions in 20th and 21st centuries which went unnoticed to many of us. Prominently, some phonetic symbols were newly introduced and some of the old phonetic symbols were deleted in English pronunciation.

When I looked into the English pronunciation after the introduction of IPA and subsequent revisions, the pronunciation of all English words were grouped into two categories: 1.Single British and American pronunciations (with two alternatives mostly in some British pronunciation) and 2.Common to both British and American pronunciations (with two alternatives in some cases).

The format reflects the changes of the English pronunciation with the introduction of IPA (which, in fact, had apparently simplified to a great extend the process of learning English pronunciation) and the differences of British and American English pronunciations. The main differences between the British and American English pronunciations are: 1.The choice of phonetic (vowel) sounds and 2.Syllabification.

It is important to note that some single British and American pronunciations have the same pronunciation which is due to the difference of IPA symbols used, and that the main variation is due to r-controlled vowel sounds in the British pronunciation (with some variations in modern standard dictionaries). I have already identified the general patterns of both the pronunciations which are reflected in the practice format.

This write-up is an extract of the book: A New Strategy of Learning English Pronunciation: Cracking the Code of English Pronunciation which is about to be published shortly.

Hoping that the write-up will serve as an introduction to the upcoming book to all the readers and as an experimentation to find the effectiveness of the book.

Download the extract of the book: "New Strategy of learning English pronunciation" (PDF - 1.6 MB)




* Ningmareo Shimray wrote this article for e-pao.net
The writer is from Ukhrul and is a Recipient of National Awards to Teachers 2021
and can be contacted at sningmareo(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on February 09 2022.



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