Orientation 2: Be awesome at speaking

Feet of two people walking together with sneakers on
Shadow your teacher often

This lesson uses speaking to teach you how to be more active in your learning. 


Learn actively to communicate fluently. 

What is active learning?

Warm Up: 

Active learning is important. One simple way is shadowing.

  1. What is shadowing?
  2. Discuss two reasons for shadowing.

Below are two parts from the Clear Speech textbook.

A. Syllables

You can ask your teacher, "How many syllables are in this word?"

B. Stress

You can ask your teacher, "Where is the word stress?"

C. Connected Speech

This is from the Pronunciation In Use textbook.

When you speak English fluently, words join together. In fact, sounds at the end of a word often move to the beginning of the next word.

You can ask your teacher, "How does this sound?"


After choosing what you learn (remember lesson 1), you need to make an effort to gather new language. Repeat it. Ask about it.

Let's practice.

A. Speaking naturally

Say these words:

  1. comfortable 
  2. interesting

Say these phrases:

  1. Could you say that again?
  2. Could you tell me what that word means?

Think about your life. What are some phrases you often say? Can you say them naturally?

B. Shadowing outside the lesson 

Read the following passage from Erin McKean's TED talk, "Go ahead, make up new words!" 

How would you say it? Where would you put the stress? 

I'm a lexicographer. I make dictionaries. And my job as a lexicographer is to try to put all the words possible into the dictionary. My job is not to decide what a word is; that is your job.

Then watch the video and note which words she stresses. Do your best to shadow each chunk, one at a time.




In this lesson, you looked at pronunciation textbooks. Pronunciation textbooks help you make a great impression and speak clearly.  

  • Do you often make pronunciation mistakes when you speak?

  • How important is pronunciation for you?


Use The English Farm's homework system by clicking the DO HOMEWORK button on your home page.

  • Choose a short, spoken passage from something that interests you, and practice shadowing the speaker.
  • Write out the text you shadowed with slashes to mark the chunks (1/ for a short pause; 2// for the end of a sentence or a stronger pause) and submit it as written homework.
  • Ask your teacher how to submit a recording of yourself saying the passage you chose.