Exercise 1 -15: Application of StressCD 1 Track 23
Mark every word or syllable with ' where you think that the sound is stressed. Use the first sentence as your example. Check Answer Key, beginning on page 193. Pause the CD.
Hello, my’name is______________. I'm taking American Accent Training. There's a lot to learn, but I hope to make it as enjoyable as possible. I should pick up on the American intonation pattern pretty easily, although the only way to get it is to practice all of the time. I use the up and down, or peaks and valleys, intonation more than I used to. I've been paying attention to pitch, too. It's like walking down a staircase. I've been talking to a lot of Americans lately, and they tell me that I'm easier to understand. Anyway, I could go on and on, but the important thing is to listen well and sound good. Well, what do you think? Do I? VListen and re-mark the stressed words with your marker. After you've put in the accent marks where you think they belong, take one of the colored translucent markers and as I read very slowly, mark the words that I stress. I am going to exaggerate the words far more than you'd normally hear in a normal reading of the paragraph. You can mark either the whole word or just the strong syllable, whichever you prefer, so that you have a bright spot of color for where the stress should fall.
Note If you do the exercise only in pencil, your eye and mind will tend to skip over the accent marks. The spots of color, however, will register as "different" and thereby encourage your pitch change. This may strike you as unusual, but trust me, it works.
* Pause the CD and practice reading the paragraph out loud three times on your own.