The Reading / Listening - Pronunciation - Level 6

Radio newsreaders and television presenters at Ireland's national broadcaster RTE are up in arms at being told to pronounce words according to the Queen's English. A report in The Irish Sun newspaper claims that RTE's broadcasters have been issued an A-Z style guide of words which instructs them on how to pronounce certain words in an effort to ensure they are clearly understood. The A-Z comes with audio clips containing elocution lessons of how to "properly" pronounce the "problem" words. An official at RTE told the Irish Sun that producers issued the guide to keep up standards. It said RTE had received complaints from the public over how certain words were supposedly mispronounced.



Irish linguistics expert Professor Raymond Hickey called the RTE's actions "internalized colonialism". He expressed his disbelief that Irish speakers were being asked to use words with an English accent. He said: "The basic issue is RTE expects its staff to speak as if they were English. Why? We have our own form of English, which is different but fully legitimate and accepted worldwide." Professor Hickey highlighted some examples of the words Irish presenters are being asked to pronounce with a British English accent. He said: "The Irish don't pronounce the TH [in 'birthday'] as a fricative, but as a stop with no breath….The same is true of 'news' - the Irish pronunciation is and always has been 'nooze'."

Try the same news story at these easier levels:

    Pronunciation - Level 4  or  Pronunciation - Level 5

Sources
  • http://www.irishmirror.ie/showbiz/irish-showbiz/rte-staff-forced-use-queens-11074384
  • https://www.thesun.ie/news/1457854/rte-blasted-for-pronunciation-style-guide-which-demands-broadcasters-speak-on-air-using-queens-english/
  • https://www.buzz.ie/news/rte-criticised-forcing-news-broadcasters-speak-queens-english-251830


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Warm-ups

1. QUEEN'S ENGLISH: Students walk around the class and talk to other students about the Queen's English. Change partners often and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, talk about these topics or words from the article. What will the article say about them? What can you say about these words and your life?

       newsreaders / national broadcaster / pronunciation / A-Z / elocution / complaints /
       linguistics / colonialism / disbelief / legitimate / worldwide / breath / highlighted

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. ACCENT: Students A strongly believe a person's accent is very important in life; Students B strongly believe it isn't.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

4. PRONUNCIATION: How difficult are these areas of pronunciation and how can you learn them? Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners often and share what you wrote.

 

How difficult?

How to learn it?

Word stress

 

 

Vowel sounds

 

 

Consonant sounds

 

 

Weak forms

 

 

Rhythm

 

 

Intonation

 

 

MY e-BOOK
ESL resource book with copiable worksheets and handouts - 1,000 Ideas and Activities for Language Teachers / English teachers
See a sample

5. WORDS: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word "words". Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.

6. ENGLISH: Rank these with your partner. Put the most important things about English at the top. Change partners often and share your rankings.

  • idioms
  • slang
  • intonation
  • spelling
  • accent
  • vocabulary
  • grammar
  • intelligibility

 

Before reading / listening

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if a-h below are true (T) or false (F).

  1. Irish broadcasters are angry at being told to use the Queen's English.     T / F
  2. Ireland's national broadcaster gave staff an A-Z of pronunciation.     T / F
  3. Ireland's national broadcaster gave staff audio clips on pronunciation.     T / F
  4. Ireland's broadcaster hasn't received any complaints about pronunciation. T / F
  5. A linguistics expert said the RTE guide was a form of colonialism.     T / F
  6. The expert was not surprised staff were asked to use British English.     T / F
  7. The professor said the Irish pronounce the TH in 'birthday'.     T / F
  8. The expert said the Irish and GB pronunciation of 'news' are the same.    T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article.

  1. up in arms
  2. issued
  3. claims
  4. elocution
  5. certain
  6. expert
  7. disbelief
  8. basic
  9. form
  10. always
  1. pronunciation
  2. fundamental
  3. particular
  4. kind
  5. astonishment
  6. angry
  7. continually
  8. asserts
  9. given
  10. specialist

3. PHRASE MATCH: (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

  1. Ireland's national
  2. are up in
  3. audio
  4. keep
  5. certain words were supposedly
  6. internalized
  7. He expressed
  8. basic
  9. accepted
  10. is and always
  1. clips
  2. mispronounced
  3. worldwide
  4. colonialism
  5. arms at being told
  6. issue
  7. up standards
  8. broadcaster
  9. has been
  10. his disbelief

Gap fill

Put these words into the spaces in the paragraph below.
official
claims
presenters
supposedly
arms
guide
ensure
clips

Radio newsreaders and television (1) ____________ at Ireland's national broadcaster RTE are up in (2) ____________ at being told to pronounce words according to the Queen's English. A report in The Irish Sun newspaper (3) ____________ that RTE's broadcasters have been issued an A-Z style guide of words which instructs them on how to pronounce certain words in an effort to (4) ____________ they are clearly understood. The A-Z comes with audio (5) ____________ containing elocution lessons of how to "properly" pronounce the "problem" words. An (6) ____________ at RTE told the Irish Sun that producers issued the (7) ____________ to keep up standards. It said RTE had received complaints from the public over how certain words were (8) ____________ mispronounced.

Put these words into the spaces in the paragraph below.
accent
form
colonialism
true
legitimate
breath
basic
highlighted

Irish linguistics expert Professor Raymond Hickey called the RTE's actions "internalized (9) ____________ ". He expressed his disbelief that Irish speakers were being asked to use words with an English accent. He said: "The (10) ____________ issue is RTE expects its staff to speak as if they were English. Why? We have our own (11) ____________ of English, which is different but fully (12) ____________ and accepted worldwide." Professor Hickey (13) ____________ some examples of the words Irish presenters are being asked to pronounce with a British English (14) ____________. He said: "The Irish don't pronounce the TH [in 'birthday'] as a fricative, but as a stop with no (15) ____________ ….The same is (16) ____________ of 'news' - the Irish pronunciation is and always has been 'nooze'."

Listening — Guess the answers. Listen to check.

1)  newsreaders and television presenters at Ireland's national broadcaster RTE ______
     a.  are up in alms
     b.  are up in arms
     c.  are up in harms
     d.  are up in legs

2)  RTE's broadcasters have been issued an A-Z style guide of words which ______
     a.  instructs these
     b.  constructs them
     c.  instructs them
     d.  instructors them

3)  The A-Z comes with audio clips containing ______
     a.  relocation lessons
     b.  electrocution lessons
     c.  dislocation lessons
     d.  elocution lessons

4)  An official at RTE told the Irish Sun that producers issued the guide to ______
     a.  keep up standards
     b.  weep up standards
     c.  beep up standards
     d.  peep up standards

5)  complaints from the public over how certain words were ______
     a.  supposed mispronounced
     b.  supposedly miss pronounced
     c.  supposedly mispronounced
     d.  supposedly missed pronounced

6)  Professor Raymond Hickey called the RTE's actions "______"
     a.  internalized colonialism
     b.  internalize colonialism
     c.  internalizes colonialism
     d.  internalized colonializing

7)  Irish speakers were being asked to use words with ______
     a.  on English accent
     b.  an English accented
     c.  an English accent
     d.  on English accented

8) own form of English, which is different but fully legitimate and ______
     a.  accepted worldwide
     b.  accept it worldwide
     c.  accepted worldly wide
     d.  accepted world wise

9)  words Irish presenters are being asked to pronounce with a British ______
     a.  English accentual
     b.  English accented
     c.  English accenting
     d.  English accent

10)  The Irish don't pronounce the TH [in 'birthday'] as a fricative, but as a stop ______
     a.  with no breathe
     b.  with no breath
     c.  with no breathy
     d.  with no breathless

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

Radio newsreaders and television (1) ___________________ Ireland's national broadcaster RTE are (2) ___________________ being told to pronounce (3) ___________________ to the Queen's English. A report in The Irish Sun newspaper claims that RTE's broadcasters have been issued an A-Z style guide of words (4) ___________________ them on how to pronounce certain words in an effort to ensure they are clearly understood. The A-Z comes with audio clips (5) ___________________ lessons of how to "properly" pronounce the "problem" words. An official at RTE told the Irish Sun that producers issued the guide (6) ___________________ standards. It said RTE had received complaints from the public over how certain words were supposedly mispronounced.

Irish (7) ___________________ Professor Raymond Hickey called the RTE's actions "internalized colonialism". He expressed his disbelief that Irish speakers were (8) ___________________ use words with an English accent. He said: "The (9) ___________________ RTE expects its staff to speak as if they were English. Why? We (10) ___________________ form of English, which is different but fully legitimate and accepted worldwide." Professor Hickey highlighted some examples of the words Irish presenters are being (11) ___________________ with a British English accent. He said: "The Irish don't pronounce the TH [in 'birthday'] as a fricative, but as a stop with no breath….The same is true of 'news' - the Irish pronunciation (12) ___________________ has been 'nooze'."

Comprehension questions

  1. What is the name of the broadcaster mentioned in the article?
  2. What kind of guide did the broadcaster give staff?
  3. What was the guide accompanied with?
  4. What did the broadcaster say it wanted to keep up?
  5. What had the broadcaster received from the public?
  6. What is Professor Raymond Hickey's job?
  7. What feeling did Professor Hickey have regarding the guide?
  8. Where did Professor Hickey say Irish English was accepted?
  9. What term did the article use to describe the TH sound?
  10. What other word did the professor highlight besides 'birthday'?




Multiple choice quiz

1) What is the name of the broadcaster mentioned in the article?
a) ERT
b) TRE
c) RTE
d) TER

2) What kind of guide did the broadcaster give staff?
a) an A-Z style guide
b) a map
c) a grammar guide
d) a tour guide

3) What was the guide accompanied with?
a) audio clips
b) a flag
c) money
d) a flash drive

4) What did the broadcaster say it wanted to keep up?
a) noise levels
b) standards
c) the good work
d) languages

5) What had the broadcaster received from the public?
a) ideas for new words
b) presents
c) praise
d) complaints

6) What is Professor Raymond Hickey's job?
a) radio presenter
b) linguistics experts
c) teacher
d) broadcasting boss

7) What feeling did Professor Hickey have regarding the guide?
a) disbelief
b) boredom
c) happiness
d) calmness

8) Where did Professor Hickey say Irish English was accepted?
a) stores
b) across Europe
c) worldwide
d) in course books

9) What term did the article use to describe the TH sound?
a) fracas
b) fraction
c) friction
d) fricative

10) What other word did the professor highlight besides 'birthday'?
a) news
b) always
c) pronunciation
d) breath

Role play

Role  A – Pronunciation

You think pronunciation is the most important part of learning English. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them what is wrong with their things. Also, tell the others which is the least important of these (and why): grammar, vocabulary or spelling.

Role  B – Grammar

You think grammar is the most important part of learning English. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them what is wrong with their things. Also, tell the others which is the least important of these (and why): pronunciation, vocabulary or spelling.

Role  C – Vocabulary

You think vocabulary is the most important part of learning English. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them what is wrong with their things. Also, tell the others which is the least important of these (and why): grammar, pronunciation or spelling.

Role  D – Spelling

You think spelling is the most important part of learning English. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them what is wrong with their things. Also, tell the others which is the least important of these (and why):  grammar, vocabulary or pronunciation.

After reading / listening

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionary / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words...

'queen'

  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • and 'English'.

  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • • Share your findings with your partners.

    • Make questions using the words you found.

    • Ask your partner / group your questions.

    2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

    •Share your questions with other classmates / groups. •Ask your partner / group your questions.

    3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

    4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

    5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

    • expert
    • disbelief
    • basic
    • fully
    • examples
    • true
    • arms
    • style
    • effort
    • audio
    • keep
    • certain




    Student survey

    Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

    (Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

    Discussion - Irish TV station 'forced' to use Queen's English

    STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

    1. What did you think when you read the headline?
    2. What images are in your mind when you hear the word 'pronunciation'?
    3. What kind of English accent would you like?
    4. What is your accent like in your own language?
    5. How important are accents?
    6. Which accent is better – British or American?
    7. Should non-British newsreaders have to use the Queen's English?
    8. What pronunciation problems do you have in English?
    9. What did your English teacher do to teach pronunciation?
    10. Have you had a funny experience with pronunciation?

    STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

    1. Did you like reading this article? Why/not?
    2. What do you think of when you hear the word 'accent'?
    3. What do you think about what you read?
    4. What do you think of the Queen's English?
    5. How important is pronunciation when learning English?
    6. Are there accents you dislike in your country?
    7. Is Professor Hickey right with his "internalized colonialism" claim?
    8. What accents do you have problems understanding?
    9. How important is pronunciation compared with other skills?
    10. What questions would you like to ask the head of RTE?

    Discussion — Write your own questions

    STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

    (a) ________________

    (b) ________________

    (c) ________________

    (d) ________________

    (e) ________________

    STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

    (f) ________________

    (g) ________________

    (h) ________________

    (i) ________________

    (j) ________________





    Language — Cloze (Gap-fill)

    Radio newsreaders and television (1) ____ at Ireland's national broadcaster RTE are up in arms at being told to pronounce words according (2) ____ the Queen's English. A report in The Irish Sun newspaper (3) ____ that RTE's broadcasters have been issued an A-Z style guide of words which instructs them on how to pronounce certain words (4) ____ an effort to ensure they are clearly understood. The A-Z comes with audio clips containing (5) ____ lessons of how to "properly" pronounce the "problem" words. An official at RTE told the Irish Sun that producers issued the guide to (6) ____ up standards. It said RTE had received complaints from the public over how certain words were supposedly mispronounced.

    Irish linguistics expert Professor Raymond Hickey called the RTE's actions "internalized (7) ____". He expressed his disbelief that Irish speakers were being asked to use words with an English accent. He said: "The (8) ____ issue is RTE expects its staff to speak (9) ____ if they were English. Why? We have our own form of English, which is different but (10) ____ legitimate and accepted worldwide." Professor Hickey highlighted some examples of the words Irish presenters are being asked to pronounce (11) ____ a British English accent. He said: "The Irish don't pronounce the TH [in 'birthday'] as a fricative, but as a stop with no (12) ____ ….The same is true of 'news' - the Irish pronunciation is and always has been 'nooze'."

    Which of these words go in the above text?

    1. (a)     presents     (b)     presentations     (c)     presenters     (d)     pretense    
    2. (a)     to     (b)     for     (c)     at     (d)     by    
    3. (a)     claim     (b)     claiming     (c)     clams     (d)     claims    
    4. (a)     at     (b)     in     (c)     on     (d)     by    
    5. (a)     electrocution     (b)     concoction     (c)     elocution     (d)     revolution    
    6. (a)     preserve     (b)     maintain     (c)     stay     (d)     keep    
    7. (a)     colonials     (b)     colonialism     (c)     colonize     (d)     colonies     
    8. (a)     basics     (b)     basically     (c)     basicity     (d)     basic    
    9. (a)     as     (b)     was     (c)     has     (d)     is    
    10. (a)     fills     (b)     full     (c)     filled     (d)     fully    
    11. (a)     for     (b)     by     (c)     as     (d)     with    
    12. (a)     breathe     (b)     breath     (c)     breathing     (d)     breathless

    Spelling

    Paragraph 1

    1. Ireland's national aeroadctbrs RTE
    2. words which irtsncust them on how
    3. an effort to euesrn they are
    4. containing neoluoict lessons
    5. received maptscloni from the public
    6. words were esplusoypd mispronounced

    Paragraph 2

    1. Irish scgnulstiii expert
    2. internalized aolsmonliic
    3. He expressed his sdlifbeei
    4. fully ilgetmeati and accepted
    5. a British English anecct
    6. pronounce the TH in 'birthday' as a ectfivria

    Put the text back together

    (    )     claims that RTE's broadcasters have been issued an A-Z style guide of words which instructs them on how to pronounce

    (    )     certain words in an effort to ensure they are clearly understood. The A-Z comes with audio clips containing elocution

    (    )     lessons of how to "properly" pronounce the "problem" words. An official at RTE told

    (    )     Irish linguistics expert Professor Raymond Hickey called the RTE's actions "internalized

    (    )     accent. He said: "The basic issue is RTE expects its staff to speak as if they were English. Why? We have our own form

    (    )     arms at being told to pronounce words according to the Queen's English. A report in The Irish Sun newspaper

    (    )     the Irish Sun that producers issued the guide to keep up standards. It said RTE had received

    (    )     complaints from the public over how certain words were supposedly mispronounced.

    (    )     colonialism". He expressed his disbelief that Irish speakers were being asked to use words with an English

    (    )     worldwide." Professor Hickey highlighted some examples of the words Irish presenters are being asked to pronounce

    (    )     of English, which is different but fully legitimate and accepted

    (    )     with a British English accent. He said: "The Irish don't pronounce the TH [in 'birthday'] as a fricative, but

    (    )     as a stop with no breath….The same is true of 'news' - the Irish pronunciation is and always has been 'nooze'."

    1  )     Radio newsreaders and television presenters at Ireland's national broadcaster RTE are up in

    Put the words in the right order

    1. in   to   arms   pronounce   at   words   being   Up   told   .
    2. issued   guide   been   A-Z   style   have   an   Broadcasters   .
    3. understood   ensure   In   they   an   are   effort   clearly   to   .
    4. lessons   the   of   problem   how   words   to   Elocution   pronounce   .
    5. It   complaints   said   from   RTE   the   had   public   received   .
    6. colonialism"   called   "internalized   the   RTE's   Hickey   actions   .
    7. asked   an   to   English   use   accent   words   Being   with   .
    8. a  accent   to  with   English  asked   words  British   Being  pronounce  .
    9. in   said   don't   TH   He   Irish   the   'birthday'   the   pronounce   .
    10. 'nooze'   and   The   always   Irish   has   pronunciation   been   is   .

    Circle the correct word (20 pairs)

    Radio newsreaders and television presenters at Ireland's national broadcaster RTE are up on / in arms at being told to pronounce words according to / of the Queen's English. A report in The Irish Sun newspaper claiming / claims that RTE's broadcasters have been issued an / on A-Z style guide of words which instructs them on what / how to pronounce certain words in an effort to ensure they are clearly understand / understood. The A-Z comes with audio clips containing elocution / electrocution lessons of how to "properly" pronounce the "problem" words. An official at RTE told the Irish Sun that producers issued the guide to keep down / up standards. It said RTE had received complaints / compliance from the public over how certain words were supposed / supposedly mispronounced.

    Irish linguistics expert / expertise Professor Raymond Hickey called the RTE's actions "internalized colonialism". He expression / expressed his disbelief that Irish speakers were being asked / asking to use words with an English accent. He said: "The basically / basic issue is RTE expects its staff to speak as if that / they were English. Why? We have our own form of English, which is different but fully legitimate and accepted world / worldwide." Professor Hickey highlighted some examples of the words Irish presenters are being asked to / for pronounce with a British English accent. He said: "The Irish don't pronounce the TH [in 'birthday'] as a fricative / friction, but as a stop with not / no breath….The same is true of 'news' - the Irish pronunciation is and always has been / being 'nooze'."

    Talk about the connection between each pair of words in italics, and why the correct word is correct.

    Insert the vowels (a, e, i, o, u)

    R_d__ n_wsr__d_rs _nd t_l_v_s__n pr_s_nt_rs _t _r_l_nd's n_t__n_l br__dc_st_r RT_ _r_ _p _n _rms _t b__ng t_ld t_ pr_n__nc_ w_rds _cc_rd_ng t_ th_ Q___n's _ngl_sh. _ r_p_rt _n Th_ _r_sh S_n n_wsp_p_r cl__ms th_t RT_'s br__dc_st_rs h_v_ b__n _ss__d _n _-Z styl_ g__d_ _f w_rds wh_ch _nstr_cts th_m _n h_w t_ pr_n__nc_ c_rt__n w_rds _n _n _ff_rt t_ _ns_r_ th_y _r_ cl__rly _nd_rst__d. Th_ _-Z c_m_s w_th __d__ cl_ps c_nt__n_ng _l_c_t__n l_ss_ns _f h_w t_ "pr_p_rly" pr_n__nc_ th_ "pr_bl_m" w_rds. _n _ff_c__l _t RT_ t_ld th_ _r_sh S_n th_t pr_d_c_rs _ss__d th_ g__d_ t_ k__p _p st_nd_rds. _t s__d RT_ h_d r_c__v_d c_mpl__nts fr_m th_ p_bl_c _v_r h_w c_rt__n w_rds w_r_ s_pp_s_dly m_spr_n__nc_d.

    _r_sh l_ng__st_cs _xp_rt Pr_f_ss_r R_ym_nd H_ck_y c_ll_d th_ RT_'s _ct__ns "_nt_rn_l_z_d c_l_n__l_sm". H_ _xpr_ss_d h_s d_sb_l__f th_t _r_sh sp__k_rs w_r_ b__ng _sk_d t_ _s_ w_rds w_th _n _ngl_sh _cc_nt. H_ s__d: "Th_ b_s_c _ss__ _s RT_ _xp_cts _ts st_ff t_ sp__k _s _f th_y w_r_ _ngl_sh. Why? W_ h_v_ __r _wn f_rm _f _ngl_sh, wh_ch _s d_ff_r_nt b_t f_lly l_g_t_m_t_ _nd _cc_pt_d w_rldw_d_." Pr_f_ss_r H_ck_y h_ghl_ght_d s_m_ _x_mpl_s _f th_ w_rds _r_sh pr_s_nt_rs _r_ b__ng _sk_d t_ pr_n__nc_ w_th _ Br_t_sh _ngl_sh _cc_nt. H_ s__d: "Th_ _r_sh d_n't pr_n__nc_ th_ TH [_n 'b_rthd_y'] _s _ fr_c_t_v_, b_t _s _ st_p w_th n_ br__th….Th_ s_m_ _s tr__ _f 'n_ws' - th_ _r_sh pr_n_nc__t__n _s _nd _lw_ys h_s b__n 'n__z_'."

    Punctuate the text and add capitals

    radio newsreaders and television presenters at ireland's national broadcaster rte are up in arms at being told to pronounce words according to the queen's english a report in the irish sun newspaper claims that rte's broadcasters have been issued an a-z style guide of words which instructs them on how to pronounce certain words in an effort to ensure they are clearly understood the a-z comes with audio clips containing elocution lessons of how to "properly" pronounce the "problem" words an official at rte told the irish sun that producers issued the guide to keep up standards it said rte had received complaints from the public over how certain words were supposedly mispronounced

    irish linguistics expert professor raymond hickey called the rte's actions "internalized colonialism" he expressed his disbelief that irish speakers were being asked to use words with an english accent he said "the basic issue is rte expects its staff to speak as if they were english why we have our own form of english which is different but fully legitimate and accepted worldwide" professor hickey highlighted some examples of the words irish presenters are being asked to pronounce with a british english accent he said "the irish don't pronounce the th [in 'birthday'] as a fricative but as a stop with no breath…the same is true of 'news' - the irish pronunciation is and always has been 'nooze'"

    Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

    RadionewsreadersandtelevisionpresentersatIreland'snationalbroad
    casterRTEareupinarmsatbeingtoldtopronouncewordsaccordingtoth
    eQueen'sEnglish.AreportinTheIrishSunnewspaperclaimsthatRTE'sb
    roadcastershavebeenissuedanA-Zstyleguideofwordswhichinstruct
    sthemonhowtopronouncecertainwordsinanefforttoensuretheyarecl
    earlyunderstood.TheA-Zcomeswithaudioclipscontainingelocutionle
    ssonsofhowto"properly"pronouncethe"problem"words.Anofficialat
    RTEtoldtheIrishSunthatproducersissuedtheguidetokeepupstandard
    s.ItsaidRTEhadreceivedcomplaintsfromthepublicoverhowcertainwo
    rdsweresupposedlymispronounced.IrishlinguisticsexpertProfessor
    RaymondHickeycalledtheRTE'sactions"internalizedcolonialism".He
    expressedhisdisbeliefthatIrishspeakerswerebeingaskedtousewords
    withanEnglishaccent.Hesaid:"ThebasicissueisRTEexpectsitsstafftos
    peakasiftheywereEnglish.Why?WehaveourownformofEnglish,which
    isdifferentbutfullylegitimateandacceptedworldwide."ProfessorHicke
    yhighlightedsomeexamplesofthewordsIrishpresentersarebeingask
    edtopronouncewithaBritishEnglishaccent.Hesaid:"TheIrishdon'tpro
    nouncetheTH[in'birthday']asafricative,butasastopwithnobreath….T
    hesameistrueof'news'-theIrishpronunciationisandalwayshasbeen'n
    ooze'."

    Free writing

    Write about pronunciation for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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    Academic writing

    There is no such thing as the "best" pronunciation. Discuss.

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    Homework

    1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

    2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about this news. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

    3. PRONUNCIATION: Make a poster about pronunciation. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

    4. QUEEN'S ENGLISH: Write a magazine article about all language schools teaching the Queen's English. Include imaginary interviews with people who are for and against it.

    Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

    5. WHAT HAPPENED NEXT? Write a newspaper article about the next stage in this news story. Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your articles.

    6. LETTER: Write a letter to an expert on pronunciation. Ask him/her three questions about it. Give him/her three of your ideas on how best to learn pronunciation. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

    Answers

    (Please look at page 26 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

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