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Hey guys! In this video we’re going to work a little bit on our listening skills. And at the same time, hopefully we’ll also learn new vocabulary and we’ll work on our speaking skills. Ready? Then with no further ado let’s start.
It’s Anna and this is the English Fluency Journey.
It’s not a secret that developing and improving listening skills is a hard task. It takes time and effort, especially if you’re not exposed to English. So the only thing that we can do is to listen as much as possible. And that’s not that easy, because lacking of vocabulary and grammar of course gets in the way. And apart from that it’s sometimes so hard to understand native speakers, because of the connected speech and reductions that they use all the time when they speak to speak faster and more naturally. But because of those reductions and connected speech the language flows, sounds smoothly and not choppy and abrupt.
That’s why in this video we’re going to analyze a couple fragment from one speech and TV shows that we all love to watch so much. To be honest I can just binge-watch TV series the whole weekend.
So, this video is also going to help us to learn how to sound more naturally ourselves.
First, let’s watch a fragment from Mark Zuckerberg’s Harvard speech, the founder of Facebook. This is an incredible and passionate speech, you’ll find the link in the description, so watch it because it’s great!
I was running late for class so I threw on a t-shirt. And I didn’t realize it until afterwards that I put it on inside out and backwards and my tag was sticking out at the front. I couldn’t figure out why no one in class would talk to me.
Also it’s important to know grammar, because when people ask
“What are you doing? And What do you do? The only difference is the words doing and do and all the rest sounds the same, but in the first example we ask what are you doing? Right now, and the other person knows that we’re asking about right now because we use the ing-form of the verb(present participle in other words) with the auxiliary verb “to be”, as I said grammar. And the second question is what do you do? Like for a living What is your occupation?
To train your ear you I recommend you to do, let’s call it an exercise. I find it very effective. So, watch movies, TV shows with subtitles, but turn them on only when you don’t understand something. Pause a video read the subtitles, listen to it again try to hear all the reductions and try to repeat it. And if don’t know some words – look them up.
So, let’s listen to and analyze some more of the examples.
*You wouldn’t have said it if you didn’t mean it.
So, would not have becomes wouldn’t’ve and did not becomes didn’t
*Do you want to get your face painted like a pretty butterfly?
Do you want to becomes D’y’wanna? The word painted he pronounces like painted dropping the t.
*And one more example
Last man standing
Are you guys really thinking of getting another house keeper? Cause I mean how would you feel about paying me to do it?
There’s no a lot reduction but she speaks so fast, very relaxed and connects everything together. This question sounds like one huge word.
You guys don’t have to try to speak like, this is just so you are aware of how people might speak.
I’m telling you that exercise works like a charm. Pause a video, read the subtitles. And over some time you will understand more and more, mark my word!
Of course we haven’t talked about all the spoken contractions, which by the way we don’t use in formal writing.
The bottom line is we have to train our ears. And we have to know what look for what to pay attention to when we’re listening.
I hope that this video helps you to start noticing these things and to become one step closer to understanding native speakers speaking patterns.
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