July 7, 2013

Shadowing - An Easy Technique to Improve English Pronunciation

Many techniques to learn a second language stem from how we learned our own native language while growing up. Shadowing is no different. Shadowing is nothing but mimicking another's voice, accent, tone, pace, and other speech inflections to sound like a native speaker. Some people are really very good at this.

Shadowing can be done with long passages or short passages, any passages in the language you want to learn. Below, I have created a few passages on the subject of 'general knowledge of India.' 


In the first set of 6 recordings, you will be able to mimic different sentences. Each sentence is said two or three times, with a pause in between so you can repeat it. The sentence is given in two formats, passive, followed by active. Passive voice is typical in Indian English, while active voice is more common in American English. 


The last two recordings combine all of the sentences into one free flowing paragraph, said slowly then followed by a little bit faster. The first of these two recordings is the passive variations, while the second recording will have the active variations of the same sentences.


The passive sentences are as follows:

  • India is my country. 
  • The capital of India is New Delhi. 
  • The prime minister of India is Dr Manmohan Singh. 
  • The national animal of India is the tiger. 
  • The national flower of India is the lotus.
  • The national bird of India is the peacock.

The active sentences are as follows:

  • I am from India. 
  • New Delhi is the capital of India. 
  • Dr. Manmohan Singh is the prime minister of India.
  • The tiger is the national animal of India.
  • The lotus is the national flower of India. 
  • The peacock is the national bird of India.


Sentences only:






Paragraphs:


I hope these shadowing exercises are helpful. Try shadowing with audio books, news casts, and if you dare, Hollywood shows and movies! Have fun!


Related Posts: 
Basic Facts about Independence Day in India  
Try shadowing the Hollywood dialogue in the clips in this blog posts!  
Try shadowing podcasts from National Public Radio from the US  
How to pronounce the American TV show "How I Met Your Mother" in an American accent  
Emulate this weatherman, and speaking and hearing American English will be oh-so-easy!  
Use of Active and Passive Voice to Communicate Ownership   

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