Practise Speaking With Me! Imitation Lesson

Lesson Overview

Lesson Summary 

Practice your pronunciation with me in this imitation lesson! We’re talking about goals & plans for the new year!

What are your English goals for the year ahead?

In this video, I’ll take you through an imitation lesson that will help you speak about your new year’s plans with confidence and clarity.

Before you know it, you’ll be able to adjust my story so that it reflects YOU and your goals for the year ahead!

Video Transcript
Section 1
Well hey there I’m Emma from mmmEnglish. It’s the start of a new year, I’ve got new hair and I’m really excited about all of the new English lessons that I have in store for you and what I want most for you this year is that this is the year where you start to feel more confident and more natural when you speak English like you can finally be yourself in English.

I’ll be here all year to help you and we’re kicking off with some speaking practice so you’re going to practise speaking with me right now out loud okay.

We’re going to work on your pronunciation, connected speech, your tone and facial expressions to help you be more expressive in English.

We’re going to be talking about goals and intentions for the year ahead and there’s lots of useful phrases and expressions. You’ll get to hear them being used naturally and in context.

By the way, what are your goals or your plans for the year ahead? Let me know down in the comments.

If you want to, go and grab the PDF download that I’ve created for you, it’s got the script that we’re going to use through this whole lesson so you can practise easily at home and you’ll also have all of the really natural expressions, the phrases that are helpful to talk about this topic.

If you’re already on the mmmEnglish mailing list then don’t worry, I’ve already sent this to you, it’s in your inbox. Go check it.

We are using the imitation technique today and that’s going to help you to develop your speaking and your listening skills.

Both of them are really important if you want to speak clearly and be understood. The focus is on natural pronunciation, word stress, connected speech and tone that’s going to help you to be more expressive.

If you’ve done one of my imitation lessons before you probably already know how this works, it’s pretty simple once you know it.

So if you’ve done it before, jump straight ahead to this time stamp and you can start practising right now. If this is your first time, then I’ll explain the three simple steps you need to follow really quickly.

The first one is you’ll just need to listen to me. You can read the words on screen, it’s just to get a feel for the story.

Step two is where things get interesting, you’ll listen to the same story again but there’ll be a pause after each clause or sentence and you’ll get to repeat after me.

And the last step is where you’ll shadow me. You’ll be speaking at the same time as me.

Now pronunciation is important here but it’s not the only thing that we’re focusing on. I also want you to pay attention to my facial expressions, my body language, all of these things are part of confident and effective communication.

All things that you can work on with me through this video to help you feel and to sound more relaxed when you speak.

Step one, just listen first.

Throughout my twenties, I regularly made New Year’s resolutions. I was obsessed! But I hardly ever kept them for longer than a few weeks. I’d reach the end of January and feel disappointed or annoyed that I’d let my bad habits creep back in.

I’d say to myself “Wow, you didn’t even last a month!” And then year after year I’d get more and more disappointed with myself and eventually, I just stopped making resolutions. It seemed pointless but I think that’s a shame! I love the optimism and the hope that a new year brings. It’s a fresh start, a clean slate.

So, I’ve been listening to podcasts and talking to my friends about their plans and their goals for the year ahead, and I’ve decided to try a new strategy this year.

Instead of setting goals and setting intentions for myself and there’s an important difference between the two, instead of focusing on the endpoint, the result, I’m going to focus on the behaviours that I need to adopt to get there.

So, for example, one intention I have for myself this year is to take better care of myself, physically, mentally and spiritually.

Now the old me would say: Okay what do I need to do to make this happen? Ah! I know, I’ll set a goal to meditate for 10 minutes every morning and I’ll always take Sundays off so that I have some time for myself.

But these goals really just set me up for failure. If I accidentally sleep in or skip a morning meditation, I suddenly feel like I’ve failed. Instead, I can use my intentions to help make good decisions that are going to lead me towards the outcome I want.

Like, would someone who’s taking care of themselves say “yes” to a late-night meeting just because it was more convenient for the other person in their time zone? Probably not. I’m hoping that being intentional with the decisions that I make can help me to take better care of myself this year.

Okay you’ve listened to the story now. It’s your turn to speak so you’re going to follow along with me, repeat what I say after me. There’s going to be a little pause where you can imitate exactly what I say.

When you’re listening, pay attention to word stress, to the tone and to the pronunciation the way that words link and connect together. Try to practise, try to copy those.

Step two, listen and imitate.

Step three is a little more challenging but I think you’re ready for it. If you want to, you can head back to step two and do it over again if you want do it again and again until you feel comfortable, do it as many times as you like, no one’s gonna know.

So in step three we are shadowing okay? You’re gonna listen but you’re also gonna speak at the same time as me. You may get a little bit tongue-tied, that’s okay, don’t worry. Shadowing me is the best way to copy the rhythm, and the tone that I’m using which is, really, really important in English.

Step three, shadow me.

Hey, you did it! Awesome work! Now you get to speak about your new year’s intentions with clarity and with confidence. Don’t forget that you can grab the PDF download that I made you, it’s got the script to make it easy to practise at home.

You can also save this video just so that you can redo it, replay it a few more times again and again. See if you can play around with some of the ideas that I shared through this lesson and make it your own, add your own goals and plans for the future.

The more that you practise, the better you’ll get and you’ve got every opportunity right now at this time of year to practise talking about this topic so make sure you do.

And you can keep practising your natural expression and your pronunciation with me right here in this lesson, it’s all about connected speech.

I’ll see you in that lesson, have a wonderful year ahead. I can’t wait to share all of the lessons I’ve got in store for you. I’ll see you again soon!

Links mentioned in the video

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