B and V – Pronunciation Problems in Korean People
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/b/ and /v/
Communication is the most important component in human society. To communicate properly we need correct pronunciation, because pronunciation affects so much on the understanding of the meanings of the words. If the sound of word is differing it may lead the listener to some other meanings.
Koreans seems to have difficulties in pronouncing English words. The sound that caused me difficult was recognising the different sounds between /b/ and /v. Since Korean language has no notation for /v/ sound, they use the same notation as /b/ sound. /b/ and /v/ are different in a way of making sound. When pronouncing /b/ sound, the lips are closed and air is released by parting the lips, where as for /v/ sound, the lower lip touches the upper teeth and let the air pass through the lower lip and the upper teeth. Koreans are busy learning and memorising vocabulary, but they dont really concentrate on practising pronunciations. They are so embarrassed to practice as they have to make funny noises. They need to be confident when learning and practising pronunciation.
It is important for students to know the sound difference between /b/ and /v/ and they need to know how they are different in ways to make sound. Teacher can introduce the sounds with regalia pictures that represent /b/ and /v/ sounds. When students recognize the difference, then teachers can to drill the sounds to students. Repetition can be an activity for students to drill the different sound of /b/ and /v/ and would help students to practice pronunciations. However students should pronounce one by one so that others can also listen and can hear others recognition of two sounds, as well as listening to their own pronunciation. In pairs, students can read out the sentence that has /b/ and /v/ sounds to their partner. While doing that, students can correct each others pronunciation. Example of the sentence can be Vanessa loves badminton and prefers it to volleyball. While teacher reads a sentence that has /b/ and /v/ sounds, students indicate if they think two words you say have the same or different pronunciation. With a worksheet given that has Same and Different written on for them to hold up. For example, when the sentence I prefer badminton than volleyball. Is given, students have to hold up a paper that says Different
Pronunciation varies depending on the consonant sounds. So it is important for students to differentiate sound changes with different consonant. Students can listen to a song that contains /b/ and /v/ sounds and identify words with /b/ sound and one with /v/ sound. Then students can practice pronunciation to the song, This activity can improve students intensive listening skills as well as recognizing the different sound. Worksheets with the words you want them to compare highlighted on Student A and Student B sheets.