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  1. #1
    Crustacean Sensation Ebi's Avatar
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    Default Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs!)

    I'd like to share some materials I've found that show how to pronounce virtually all of the sounds in English. But first...

    DISCLAIMER: I did not create any of the content contained in these materials. All credit for the images and Japanese descriptions belong to the good folks at http://mymeet-up.com/ You can find the original PDF here: http://mymeet-up.com/hatsuon/sheet.pdf

    However, I did make two important modifications: 1) I made the images black & white printer friendly and 2) I made an editable Word document version that allows you to change the sample words for each sound to match your own pronunciation and preferences. I used the North American accent used in the textbooks, so you will probably need to modify it heavily to match a different English dialect. I included 200 anchor words, so it might be a pain if you want to redo it.

    So what is this exactly?


    This is a pronunciation chart showing almost all of the major sounds used in English, including International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) symbols, mouth diagrams, and Japanese descriptions of how to make the sounds. Since this was written by native Japanese speakers for Japanese speakers, it is easy for students to understand. It can fit neatly on just two papers as long as you print double-sided. Pages 1-2 are vowel sounds (母音 boin), pages 3-4 are consonant sounds (子音 shi'in).


    How can I use these materials?

    I just discovered this website, so I don't have a lot of experience using them yet. But I have some ideas of how these can be used:


    1) Use it as a reference:

    * ask students to keep it in the back of their English file, encourage them to refer to it whenever they have trouble with certain sounds (individually or as a whole class)


    2) Use it when teaching new content:

    * as new sounds are taught, refer to the chart and practice as a class (the sounds are numbered for quick reference)

    * encourage students to write the pronunciation of new words in their notebook using this chart or the IPA pronunciation in the back of the textbook

    * when practicing new sounds, have students make pairs and take turns reading the example words, the listener gives feedback

    * make a handful of big flashcards highlighting just one sound each to use when teaching phonics



    3) Use it to play games:

    * write a "secret" word or phrase on the board using only the IPA symbols an have students try to find the original word(s)

    * say a sound out-loud and have students point to the sound they hear or say the number

    * cut up the charts and turn them into karuta cards for listening comprehension practice

    * pick one sound on the chart and challenge students to find as many words that use that sound as they can (in pairs or groups)

    * make minimal pair word trees to practice sounds and words on the chart

    * make a worksheet with multiple choice options for word pronunciations and have students use the chart to determine which is correct



    I'm sure there are more ideas (and I'd love to hear yours!) so be creative. If you have any questions or notice any errors, please let me know. I'm hoping this will be a good resource for your schools if you teach phonics or review pronunciation.

    If you use these in your classes, let me know how it goes!

    Download the printout:
    English Pronunciation Guide in Japanese.doc

    (If you need the larger raw black & white images, you can download them here.)
    Last edited by Ebi; May 12th, 2015 at 20:20.

  2. #2
    Crustacean Sensation Ebi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    Also, if you want to add your own words, I used Cambridge dictionary online to check the IPA pronunciation.
    American English dictionary: http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/d...rican-english/
    British English dictionary: http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/dictionary/british/

    Note that the IPA symbols are slightly different since they use the standard symbols rather than "Upton" style IPA symbols which are used in the textbook and on the chart.

    Here is a good guide for the IPA symbols that also has examples of simple words for each sound since it's targeted to ESL teachers: http://teflpedia.com/International_Phonetic_Alphabet

    It's honestly a huge pain to write in IPA in MS Word, so you'll probably want to use my examples as a guideline. I had to manually overlay the accent symbols on some of the letters with 2+ syllables because I couldn't figure out how else to make it work.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    My heeeero!

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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    Oh my god, this is a godsend, particularly for one of my students who has a real hard time pronouncing "ar" words (popular, father, etc.). Also, I totally forgot that IPA is an actual thing used by people other than musicians (would have never been able to sing any of Bach's works otherwise...so much damn german).
    Last edited by naginataonthebrain; April 23rd, 2015 at 01:30.

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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    Quote Originally Posted by naginataonthebrain View Post
    Oh my god, this is a godsend, particularly for one of my students who has a real hard time pronouncing "ar" words (popular, father, etc.). Also, I totally forgot that IPA is an actual thing used by people other than musicians (would have never been able to sing any of Bach's works otherwise...so much damn german).
    I have a field day whenever IPA is mentioned in class. But they don't really get why I'm so excited because there are only 5 vowels in their minds. How wrong they are!

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    Professional Fun Killer hypatia's Avatar
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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    Quote Originally Posted by Ananasboat View Post
    I have a field day whenever IPA is mentioned in class. But they don't really get why I'm so excited because there are only 5 vowels in their minds. How wrong they are!
    Hahaha. I got really excited when when I first got here and saw there was IPA for all new vocabulary in the textbooks my schools use. I asked my JTEs about it, and most had no idea what IPA was, much less used it in class.
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    Crustacean Sensation Ebi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    Thanks for the positive responses!

    I got a chance to use these in my classes for the first time today. It was a first year JHS class, so the kids are still learning how to write "proper" ABC letters. We use the New Horizon textbooks, which actually does sort of cover IPA pronunciation in the back of the first book. So we used that page to do "A says 'a a apple'" style chants for A-G and had kids refer to the chart for each sound. (But in hindsight we've realized that even just 8 sounds is probably too many for one class.) The chart seemed to help them produce the correct sounds, but we're definitely going to need to practice over and over since even by the end of class a lot of kids reverted to "ahhh" for A. I'm trying to get them to anchor that sound to "cat" since that seems to be a word they can produce fairly well.

    PS - I replaced the file in my first post with a new version of the document, but I only made a really minor edit. I just swapped the font of the numbers to Comic Sans since I realized that I'd used a different font on accident. Download again if you want to, but you probably won't notice much of a difference. I'm just a stickler for details.

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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    God, I wish I would have had this earlier! I've been working as a classroom assistant/tutor for a Japanese fifth grader, and the one thing that I've really had trouble teaching her is pronunciation. I'm going to bring this is next week and try it out! And I'm betting it's going to come in handy if I get placed in a ES or JHS. Thanks, Ebi!

  9. #9
    Crustacean Sensation Ebi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    I hope it helps! I've been using it with my first years and it's been a slow process, but I think the key is to do a little at a time and review over and over so it's not overwhelming. And starting with a phonics alphabet before getting into more "unusual" sounds might help. "A says 'a, a, apple' B says 'b, b, ball'" type of thing. Song/chants can really help with remembering.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    Stuff like this makes me realize how little I know about teaching English. Do we get a crash course on phonics and this sort of thing at orientation or are we just expected to pick it up?
    Last edited by Tomonster; May 10th, 2015 at 06:04.

  11. #11
    Crustacean Sensation Ebi's Avatar
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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    Quote Originally Posted by Tomonster View Post
    Stuff like this makes me realize how little I know about teaching English. Do we get a crash course on phonics and this sort of thing at orientation or are we just expected to pick it up?
    No, the basics of teaching English rarely seem to be covered in orientations. Probably because ALTs are supposed to defer to their JTEs when it comes to grammar since they usually will devote a lot of the class time explaining English grammar in Japanese (as opposed to speaking English and giving natural examples).

    But here are some good resources:

    Things to keep in mind when you start teaching non-native English speakers: Getting Started: The Basics of Teaching
    Overview of basic English grammar: Grammar - Basic English Grammar lessons

    *knowing the functions & forms of "Be Verbs" and "Action Verbs", known as be動詞 and 一般動詞 in Japanese, will probably help.

    If you have any specific grammar questions, Google it! You'll often find an ESL forum discussing the rules behind why we say X and if Y is also "correct" grammar. If you need more advice, ask questions here too. I've considered writing up a "How to ALT" guide, but there's already a lot of info out there if you look for it.

  12. #12
    Gizmoduck - blatherskite Gizmotech's Avatar
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    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    HAHAHAHAHA. No.

    Learn and fail as you go!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Antonath View Post
    We Jeeperneez are express all emotion through money. Wedding is happy money. Funeral is sad money. Izakaya is friendship money. Girl-bar is almost-sex money. But babby-borning is bery happy money, as no babby in Japan. All babby is special so we is givings much money as presento for babby.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Excellent English Pronunciation Guide for Japanese Students (Share with your JTEs

    Quote Originally Posted by Gizmotech View Post
    HAHAHAHAHA. No.

    Learn and fail as you go!
    Shame. I figured as much but I had hoped, rather naively, that some bright spark somewhere would have realized that training ALTs how to teach English might be a good idea.

    [QUOTE=Ebi;915847] … QUOTE]
    Thanks for all this stuff Ebi, its really appreciated. I think you’re probably deserving of one of those flashy ITIL service awards.

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