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Common Reductions I Common Reductions II Linking Word Stress Sentence Stress & Rhythm
Unit 5:Sentence Stress & Rhythm
|Section 2: From Listening To Pronunciation|
|Section 3: Pronunciation Drills|
|Section 4: Variety Show|
Section 1: Focus
Introduction of Sentence Stress and Rhythm
When a speaker says a sentence, there is usually one focus of meaning which the speaker stresses. Sentence stress is where the focus is on. When the sentence is simple, there is only one sentence stress. But if the sentence is a compound or complex sentence, which may carry more than one clause, there will be more than one sentence stress. The following sentences are simple ones that will help you build up the conception of sentence stress.
The rhythm of English is based on the contrast of stressed and unstressed syllables. The rhythm may not be always there, but overall, it follows a musical unity. The following sentences will give you an idea of how they are said. The stressed syllables are in capital letters, but the unstressed parts are underlined, its rotation shows the ˇ§do-me-do-meˇ¨ rhythm, which is mentioned in Unit 4. Rhythm is most obvious in report English, such as news reports and narration of a reading passage. While the most common narration we experience, such as telling a childrenˇ¦s story, presents the most distinctive rhythm. Please note No. 10 in this exercise to feel the rhythm of report English.
Section 2: From Listening To Pronunciation
Closely observe dialogues or reading passages, one can easily find various supra-segmental features prevail everywhere. The following dialogue and reading passage contain various supra-segmental features. Please listen as many times as you would like, and observe the features as presented.
Now listen to Conversation 5 of the elementary level from the following site:ˇ@
Listen to the reading passages, and you will find grouping of words also help with creating rhythm in speaking English. Listen while reading the lines in the passages to know the grouping principals.
Section 3: Pronunciation Drills
After you observed the dialogue and reading passages from the previous section, you have probably had a thorough understanding of how grouping of words help with stress. The following practices are sentence exercises for each feature we introduce in this unit. Practice them, and you will get the rhythm of spoken English.
The following web pages can help you get a even clearer picture of how sentence stress is spoken.
Besides stress, grouping of words when saying them is also essential to create rhythm. We do not speak English word by word, rather we speak with groups of words. The following exercise will help you understand the rules of grouping words.
Section 4: Variety Show
English learning is not just hard work. Here we have some interesting activities for you to learn and have fun! Turn on the sound track to hear them!
Nursery Rhyme (U5_nursery rhyme)
I LOVE my comPUter.
My PRINter, my KEYboard, my MOUSE.
I NEver have PROblems,
I use it ALL DAY.
I NEver go OUT of the house!
I HATE my comPUter.
My MOdem, my DISK DRIVE, my SCREEN.
I ALways have PROblems,
Itˇ¦s DRIving me CRAZY.
CompPUters MAKE me want to SCREAM!
Please click on number 30 on the following page to hear the recitation of the poem.
ˇ§Annebelle Leeˇ¨ Written by Edgar Allen Poe, Recited by Khandi Alexander
It was MANY and MANY a year ago,
In a KINGdom by the SEA,
That a MAIden THERE lived WHOM you may KNOW
By the NAME of ANnabelle LEE;
And this maiden SHE lived with NO Other thought
Than to LOVE and BE loved by ME.
I was a CHILD and she was a CHILD,
In this KINGdom by the SEA;
But we LOVED with a LOVE that was MORE than love -
I and my ANnabelle Lee;
With a LOVE that the WINged SEraphs of HEAven
COveted HER and ME.
But our love was STRONger by FAR than the LOVE
Of THOSE who were OLder than we
Of many FAR WIser than we
And NEIther the ANgels in HEAven aBOVE,
Nor the DEmons down UNDER the SEA,
Can EVER disSEver my SOUL from the SOUL
Of the BEAUtiful Annabelle Lee.
For the moon NEver beams without bringing me DREAMS
Of the BEAUtiful Annabelle Lee;
And the stars NEVER rise but I FEEL the BRIGHT EYES
Of the BEAUtiful Annabelle Lee.
(Source: Sound Check 11, p. 93, Get Real 2, by Angela Buckingham and Miles Craven, 2001, Oxford: Macmillan Education, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited.)
Section 5: Listen And Check
No learning is completed without a quiz to check your comprehension. The following quiz is designed for you to check whether you can identify the supra-segmental features introduced in this unit. They ARE in the sentences.
The following sentences were originally spoken as a dialogue. Please listen and mark a hook under the words when you identify it is linked.
Please print out the following passage first. then listen and mark a straight line in between the words when you hear there is a pause. The first sentence has been done for you.