Teach English in LishAnba Zhen - Zhuzhou Shi

Do you want to be TEFL or TESOL-certified and teach in LishAnba Zhen? Are you interested in teaching English in Zhuzhou Shi? Check out ITTT’s online and in-class courses, Become certified to Teach English as a Foreign Language and start teaching English ONLINE or abroad! ITTT offers a wide variety of Online TEFL Courses and a great number of opportunities for English Teachers and for Teachers of English as a Second Language.

English pronunciation can be very difficult to learn for the Japanese people. From the basic phonemes and articulation, to intonation and word stress, the many differences between English and Japanese in these areas often causes a lot of confusion for learners. To start, English has 44 unique sounds, or phonemes, whereas Japanese has 15 consonant phonemes that mix and match with 5 simple vowels. In other words, many of the sounds that exist in English do not even exist in Japanese. For example, the ‘v’ and ‘th’ sounds are not in the Japanese language. When Japanese students are first introduced to these two sounds, they are often taught that the ‘v’ sound is like ‘b’, and the ‘th’ sound is like ‘s’. As such, ‘vat’ becomes ‘bat’, and ‘math’ becomes ‘mass’. ‘R’ and ‘l’ are one of the most commonly mistaken consonants. In Japanese, there is a similar ‘r’ consonant, but it is considered a liquid phoneme, often realized as an apico-alveolar tap, or alveolar lateral approximant[1]. The articulation spot is closer to in between an English ‘r’ and ‘l’. To be able to move the tongue further back to make a proper ‘r’, or to move the tongue behind the teeth to make an ‘l’ is one of the most common challenges for English pronunciation for the Japanese. In addition, in Japanese, a consonant cannot stand alone, it must be paired off with a vowel to make a sound. As a result, one will often hear a Japanese person say ‘talku’ instead of ‘talk. To add to the confusion, there are many exceptions in English, even when it comes to pronunciation. A non-native learner would probably think that the words ‘hose’ and ‘lose’ should be pronounced similarly, and that ‘wait’ and ‘weight’ should be different. It is because of these kinds of misunderstandings that learners of English often become confused and/or demotivated. Intonation and stress is another challenging area for learners. Putting aside the fact that different parts of the world will utilize intonation and stress a little differently in their sentences, the differences can be quite different between English and Japanese. English tends to have more dramatic rises and falls in intonation than in Japanese.[2] Thus, when a Japanese learner tries to speak English, often it will sound flat or emotionless, or it could potentially be misinterpreted by a native English speaker. For example, a sentence could sound like a question to the native speaker because the Japanese learner did not lower the pitch enough at the end of the sentence.[2] With sentence stress, this is not a concept that the Japanese are unfamiliar with, but usually either the wrong word may be chosen to be stressed, or the level with which it needs to be emphasized to deliver the intended meaning is off. Word, or rather syllable stress is even trickier. There are many rules for learners to memorize, and of course, also many exceptions to each rule. As such, it is easy to make a mistake on where to put the stress in the word. It is even more difficult for Japanese learners to speak with unstressed syllables. Quite often what is heard is the sentence with every word stressed. The challenges that Japanese learners of English face with pronunciation make it difficult for them to feel confidence when they speak, nor do they want to make a mistake in front of their peers, so this is one of the areas that does require more attention in Japanese classrooms. 1 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perception_of_English_/r/_and_/l/_by_Japanese_speakers 2 https://lukas-prokop.at/proj/nihonjin-no-eigo/