Five Ways to Show Active Listening During Conversations with Americans

 Are you listening? Then you need to show me. Showing active listening is absolutely essential in American culture. Like it or not, when we are speaking a language that isn’t our first, we often have to show other people that we understand them. In my experience learning Spanish, I found that my listening skills have always been stronger than my speaking skills. Even though I’m now fluent in Spanish, I often feel like I … Read the article and watch the video lesson

Four Elements of a Natural-Sounding Accent in American English

 Sound familiar? I came here [to the US] and realized how truly limited my English was, and it was very scary. I soon realized it wasn’t going to be hard to learn – it was going to be nearly impossible. My accent was horrible. In Mexico, nobody says, “You speak English with a good accent.” You either speak English or you don’t: as long as you can communicate, no one cares. But the word … Read the article and watch the video lesson

How to Pronounce “How are you?” [Intonation Patterns in American English]

 Think about how you say this simple question: How are you? How do you usually inquire how someone is doing? Over the years, you may have practiced the question so many times that you don’t usually think about how it sounds. In this video lesson, you’ll learn how to use your tone more effectively when asking, “How are you?” You can change your stress and choose a different intonation pattern to show a variety … Read the article and watch the video lesson

The Power of Pitch: Change Your Tone for Better Stress and Intonation in English

Want to speak clearly and express your emotions and attitudes through your voice? Then you need to learn to change your tone and use pitch variation for better stress and intonation in American English. In short, you need to embrace the power of pitch. The Role of Pitch in Spoken English Before we get started, let’s talk about what we mean by the word “pitch.” Pitch is the highness or lowness of your voice, and it’s … Read the article and watch the video lesson

Seven Ways to Use Your Voice and Breath to Sound More Professional in English

I have excellent news for you: sounding professional is NOT about having perfect pronunciation. When you’re trying to increase your authority, be taken more seriously, and achieve success in a professional or academic setting, you may obsess over these things: how your accent sounds to other people what you are (or rather your mouth is) doing wrong, or identifying the ways in which you don’t sound like a native speaker. Does this sound familiar? I know … Read the article and watch the video lesson

Nine Ways to Improve Your Intonation for Better Conversations in English

What happens when you’re not really worried about choosing the perfect words to express yourself anymore? After all, you’ve been speaking English both professionally and personally for years, and you know you’ve got a great vocabulary! If you’re like most non-native English speakers I work with, that’s when you start stressing about your pronunciation, wondering how you can finally get those tricky vowels right, and looking for ways to improve how you sound. This is great, but … Read the article and watch the video lesson