- Turn on the recorder, say one sentence in your normal speech. Try to forget the recorder is on; do not change your speech for the situation. Then hold up the pencil vertically about 6 inches from your mouth as if it were a microphone. (The eraser on the pencil is the receiver of the microphone.) Say the same exact sentence into the “mic.” Stop the recorder and play the two recordings back. Analyze the differences. Is the second recording louder, softer, slower, faster, more precise? Does it have better intonation or more pauses?
- Turn on the recorder again. Extend your arm straight out in front of you, holding the pencil as you did before. Say something different this time, remembering to “project” your voice to the mic. Stop the recorder again and replay it. How do you sound?
- Turn on the recorder for the third time. Find a focal point more than 5 feet away and say a third sentence. Stop the recorder again and play it back. Is it “better” than your normal speech?
Nancy Hiser, MA, is the director of English Talk Shop LLC which creates pronunciation software for ESL speakers. She is a speech pathologist with more than 20 years experience in accent modification training. Contact her at NHiser@EnglishTalkShop.com