Five tips to speak English more naturally

One: Keep it simple Two: Enjoy your mistakes Three: Learn about word and sentence stress and intonation Four: Learn how English word sounds combine Five: Practice, practice, practice How I can help I can offer you an experienced ear, actually, two, to pick out which areas of pronunciation you need to work on to speakContinue reading “Five tips to speak English more naturally”

The dangers of pronunciation training

And how not to lose confidence in your speaking skills You need to improve your pronunciation, so you start pronunciation training. Of course, you want to improve but you must know there are dangers. It’s often true that the more you know you feel like the less you know. The problem is that the moreContinue reading “The dangers of pronunciation training”

Do I have to learn how to say the “th”?

The “th” or /ð/ and /θ/ sounds don’t exist in German or many other languages. Notoriously difficult to produce, to make them you have to find the right spot with your tongue on your front teeth. It takes a lot of practice and can take many months or even years to perfect. The question is:Continue reading “Do I have to learn how to say the “th”?”

Test your English pronunciation

Try my online test for German speakers for free Why should I work on my English pronunciation Chances are that pronunciation work wasn’t a large, or any, part of your English lessons at school. Learning grammar and vocabulary was probably the driving force behind the curriculum, but does this mean that work on how toContinue reading “Test your English pronunciation”

Pronunciation: Do you have a case of terminal devoicing?

When you say “peas” and “peace” do the words sound the same? What about “pick” and “pig”? or “dug” and “duck”? If they do you might be suffering from terminal devoicing. It sounds serious, but don’t worry, despite its name, there is a cure. We’ll get to that later. First, what is it, and whoContinue reading “Pronunciation: Do you have a case of terminal devoicing?”

How good is your English really?

Zen master Thích Nhất Hạnh, who died in January this year, had some advice: You should write “Are you sure?” and tape it to your wall. This will remind you that, although you may believe something is true, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is. In order to make good progress in any area of life,Continue reading “How good is your English really?”

A New Start or Back to Work

Last week the schools started again after the summer holidays. Some kids are going back to what they know but others are starting in new classes or even new schools. There are new challenges, with maybe even a whole new location, new teachers, and classmates. For us adults, this time of year usually means gettingContinue reading “A New Start or Back to Work”

Idioms for Motivation

I’m [1] champing at the bit to get started on the new project. Don’t tell me to [2]dial it down. This time I’m going to [3]go the extra mile and [4]blow them away.  Yes, I’m really [5]raring to go.  I’m going to [6]eat, sleep and breathe this new product until we [7]hit the jackpot. I’mContinue reading “Idioms for Motivation”

Idioms for when you’re feeling hopeful

It may be hard but [1] never say die. You still [2] stand a chance. Before you know it things will [3] take off and you’ll be [4]on a roll. Maybe you’ll even [5]make it big. Who knows what the future will hold. They say [6] fortune favours the bold! You’ve already [7] come aContinue reading “Idioms for when you’re feeling hopeful”