Saturday, 27 August 2016

How To Improve Your Pronunciation In The IELTS Speaking Test

If you know how the IELTS speaking test is scored, you will understand that pronunciation is one of the four marking criteria, and it counts for 25% of your speaking score. It is of course important to work on your pronunciation for the test.
You may be asking: how can I improve my pronunciation?
There is no quick fix on improving pronunciation and a lot of teachers may answer ‘Speak more.’ However, this is not a very good answer because you need to know the best tactics to practise in order to get maximum results.
This article will help you:
·         Learn HOW to improve your pronunciation
·         EASY TRICKS to speak better instantly

TIP NUMBER 1 – Get Everything Prepared

When we talk about preparation, it is not just about trying to prepare for possible answers. It is important to know a few other things.
First, understand the structure of the speaking test. How much time does the test take? How many parts are there to the speaking test? What is each part of the test about? Or do I have to give a speech, or have a discussion with the examiner?
Second, learn how the IELTS speaking exam is scored.
If you want to get a higher band score, you will need to know what the examiner wants! In short, pronunciation, fluency and coherence, grammar and vocabulary all count for 25% of the score.
Finally, yes, you will never know what questions you will be asked in the speaking test, but there are some common topics that you can prepare for, such as family, work, and travel.
Remember, do NOT memorise your prepared answers for the test. Why not? When the examiner finds out you are not actually speaking naturally, you may not get a high score or you may even lose marks.
And, believe me, they will know!
What can I do to avoid having to memorise answers then? You may ask yourself.
Well, you can still learn more vocabulary and phrases of commonly asked topics by simply practising more frequently. This will allow you to get better at using the vocabulary! But speak naturally!
Another simple way to improve your speaking is to arrive early and not get stressed out.
Many speaking tests do not take place right after the other test components of the IELTS exam.
You may even be asked to come on a separate day to take the speaking test only.
If you are told that your speaking exam is on a separate day, it is very important that you arrive at the test venue at least 30 to 40 minutes before your speaking test appointment time.
In this way, you will have plenty of time to calm yourself down and be mentally prepared.

TIP NUMBER 2 – Speak Naturally

Learn how not to feel nervous in front of the examiner. By being more relaxed, you can enjoy a normal conversation with the examiner and speak naturally.
Don’t rush, it is always better to speak clearly rather than rush through your speech. By speaking naturally, you will be able to show your emotions when you speak and improve the rhythm of your speech.

TIP NUMBER 3 – Think And Speak In Chunks

A common problem students have when taking the speaking test is they translate every word in their head before saying it out loud. So it sounds like they pause after every word which affects their pronunciation score.
To help improve the intonation of speech and sentence stresses, try to use the ‘Chunking’ technique. Chunking is talking in rhythm by grouping the words, with short silences in between or change in tone.
For example, when you say this sentence, don’t say it like this:
“Last – year – was – the – best – year – of – my – life.”
Say it like this: “LAST year // was the BEST year // of my LIFE.”
Can you see the difference? So think and speak in chunks.
You will speak more naturally in chunks of words with better pronunciation and intonation. This will help the examiner understand your messages much better and clearer.

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Friday, 1 April 2016

Essay: Most Memorable Event of My Life

"Memories are special moments
       that tell our story."
What makes things memorable is that they are meaningful, significant, and colourful. The most memorable event of my life was really a dream event happened just some months back.  On a holiday, I was sitting in my room after finishing my home work. As my friends were away to hill stations, I was feeling very lonely. I watched the cars and other vehicles passing by and wished that like my friends, I would also have been travelling or passing my time.

While my mind was occupied with thoughts of holidays and having fun with my friends, the door bell rang. I ran to answer it and found the postman with a parcel and a letter for me.

I signed the paper and took the parcel. My hands were itching to open the packet as my curiosity knew no bounds. I ripped the parcel open and found a beautiful tape recorder in it. The parcel had been sent from the United States and the letter along with it was from my uncle who had sent me that wonderful gift.

However, even more joy than receiving the tape recorder was the letter which my uncle had written. The letter was an invitation to go to the United States for my holidays. My uncle had arranged everything for me-the tickets and the visa, and I already had a passport.

My heart skipped several beats as I ran to give this great news to my mother. She was taken aback initially and her first reaction was not so positive.

However, she thought about it, consulted my father who was at his office and they both agreed to allow me to go to the United States to spend the rest of my holidays with my uncle.

I jumped from room to room and started packing my clothes, my toys, my books and other articles that I would need on the flight and in America. My mind was filled with various ideas about how I would spend my time with my cousins. I started dreaming about Disney world, Universal studios, the Statue of Liberty, the Grand Canyon and all the other tourist attractions that I had read about in magazines.

My father took me for shopping the same day because he felt that I would need some more things to take with me. We bought gifts for my cousins and my uncle and aunt and when I came back home my cupboard was full of new clothes, shoes, gifts, etc.

Since I had not expected any such thing to happen to me, and I had been feeling sorry for myself, this offer came as a great surprise. This was indeed the happiest event of my life and I don't think I shall ever forget it as long as I live.
"Happiest and memorable event is ever remembered
as it has a special corner in our heart."
--Y.A. Milan

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