I am often surprised at how focusing on the "stress - timed" quality of English helps students improve their pronunciation skills. Students often focus on pronouncing each word correctly and therefore tend to pronounce in an unnatural manner. By focusing on the stress - timed factor in English - the fact that only principal words such as proper nouns, principal verbs, adjectives and adverbs receive the "stress" - students soon begin sounding much more "authentic" as the cadence of the language begins to ring true. The following lesson focuses on raising awareness of this issue and includes practice exercises.
Aim: Improving pronunciation by focusing on the stress - time nature of spoken English
Activity: Awareness raising followed by practical application exercises
Level: Pre - intermediate to upper intermediate depending on student needs and awareness
Pronunciation Help - Sentence Stress
Take a look at the following list of stressed and non-stressed word types.
Basically, stress words are considered CONTENT WORDS such as
Non-stressed words are considered FUNCTION WORDS such as
Mark the stressed words in the following sentences. After you have found the stressed words, practice reading the sentences aloud.