1. Assessment of your accent
I start with a comprehensive assessment of your accent (while speaking and reading). This means I am able to tailor the lessons to your individual needs.
2. Understand how the mouth muscles work
We will explore how the mouth works within the first lesson. Remember that speech is physical activity. It’s important to understand how the mouth muscles work, so you are able to change the way you speak.
3. Train the muscles
We do physical training exercises to make the mouth muscles stronger and more flexible. This will give you the control to create new sounds more easily.
4. Learn some IPA (phonetic) symbols
English spelling is confusing. It is not easy to guess the pronunciation of a word from the spelling (e.g. the “b” in “debt” is not pronounced!)
By learning the difference between letters and sounds – and using symbols from the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) – the process of pronouncing words becomes much simpler.
Don’t worry if you want to avoid phonetics – they are not essential to improving your accent.
5. Focus on important sounds
I start by teaching you the sounds that will make the biggest differences to your accent. The first priority is improving intelligibility (=people understanding you). The second priority is sounding more like a native speaker. Depending on your needs we may study some or all of the following: vowels, consonants, rhythm, intonation, and voice quality.
When helpful, I make comparisons with the sounds in your native language.
6. Practice materials to study at home
I will give you worksheets with diagrams, practice texts and audio recordings. In addition, I will email you a “Lesson Summary” after each lesson, which documents what we learned and includes advice on what to practise.
7. Guidance on how to practise
I will advise you on how to practise and how to incorporate new sounds in your everyday speech.
8. Speak clearly & confidently!
After taking lessons, you will have a deeper understanding of how English pronunciation works and will be able to communicate more effectively in English.