We often listen to radio, TV, movies, cassette tapes and CDs to learn languages. Listening to native speakers of a language is both good and necessary, but to improve speaking ability, you sometimes need to listen to another voice - your own! Take two or three sentences that you have listened to before, and record them onto a cassette tape or MP3 player. What do you hear? Is your speaking clear? How does it compare to the native speaker's way of speaking?
Record Your Own Voice
Don't worry about your voice quality when you listen to your recording. Everybody, including Teacher Joe, hates to hear their own voice when it's recorded! Focus on whether the words are clear and whether the rhythm and intonation are similar to the native English speaker's sentences.
After you listen to yourself, try repeating the sentences out loud a few times, saying them more smoothly and naturally. Then record your voice again and compare it to your first recording. Is it a little better? A little faster? A little smoother?
Be patient. You may have to do one recording every day for a few weeks before you notice any definite improvement. As with all language study, those who persevere are those who succeed.
If you think this idea was useful, send email to Teacher Joe at teacherjoe.us @ gmail.com with your comments and suggestions.
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