Improve Your Pronunciation: The Syllable Stress

By 5 April 2015 Video lessons 11 Comments

Here is a discussion that really happened between my husband (with his strong French accent – it’s him in the video) and my father (real American):

My husband: I like your Toy-o-ta.
My father: Uh…excuse me?
My husband: I LIKE your Toy-o-ta.
My father: (silence) You like my…uh, my what?
My husband: Your Toy-o-ta. It’s nice.
My father: (looks at me) Christy, what’d he say?
Moi: He likes the To-YO-ta.
My father: Oh, the To-YO-ta. Uh, yeah. It’s a good car.
My husband: That’s what I said!

The first conversation in the video has really happened!

Did it ever happen to you, talking to an American colleague? You say something, he does not understand, then he tells you something like “Oh, you mean (what you just said)?”, as if he translated from your French English to his American English.

Don’t be discouraged. It happens to everyone and it’s often a simple question of pronunciation. More specifically, a syllable stress.

In today’s lesson, I will give you some exercises to do and I will also explain the syllable stress, to help you understand how to train efficiently.

It’s a small difference between the sound of the syllables that makes ALL the difference sometimes. You will see many examples in today’s video.

Sorry … but it was not me who invented the English pronunciation.

Améliorer Ton Accent En Anglais - Improve your accent: Syllable stress

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And of course, have a great week in English,


P.S. This Thursday, I’m going to the week-long annual conference of the International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language in Manchester. It’s the most intense week of my year, so you probably won’t receive a new video from me next Tuesday. Instead, I’ll send you a few past videos that you perhaps didn’t have time to watch, so you can catch up on your English 🙂

I hope you’ll forgive me, but I promise to come back with TONS of great ideas to help you boost your English and boost your career !


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