Challenge Sounds

Challenge Sounds

The biggest mistake many Asian speakers make (Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Japanese, Thai or Vietnamese, for example) is often focusing too much (over doing it) on the /r/ and the /l/ sound. Of course, it’s a good thing to work on those sounds, especially if you say them incorrectly. However, if you get a “general grasp” on them (you will know because people will understand you when you say words like “relevant”), then move on to working on other issues. Are you grouping words and holding the last one longer?  If you are primarily focusing on individual sounds, you could be making yourself harder to understand. Instead, focus on clustering words in groups and increasing the time between word groups. Spend more time on challenge words (say them more deliberately with focus), but give the entire “chunk” of data … the content of your speech … the primary focus. Don’t try to be a perfectionist… take what you have, and work on being the best you can be by focusing on the “bigger picture.”

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