Posted in 2Ts in a Pod: Podcast, Pronunciation Classes, Video Classes

2Ts Video: Pronunciation – Mountain Fountain

Credit: Mark Wilding

Here’s another pronunciation video from our TikTok channel. This time we’re looking at 4 words that Spanish speakers struggle to pronounce:





Follow us on social media for more great content:


Twitter: @2tspod



Or listen to full episodes of the podcast on SoundCloud, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts:

Posted in 2Ts in a Pod: Podcast, pronunciation, Pronunciation Classes

2Ts Video: Pronunciation – Bear, Beer, Bird

Credit: Mark Wilding

This is another short video from our TikTok channel, this time we’re looking at the pronunciation of three words that Spanish speakers really tend to struggle with: bear, beer & bird. If you enjoy this video, come join us on TikTok, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter:


Twitter: @2tspod



Shot and edited by Katy Wright
Posted in Action Research, Pronunciation Classes

Action Research: Pronunciation Project #2

This is the second in a series of posts documenting a mini research project I’m doing with a group of C1/C2 students to see how effective explicit pronunciation instruction activities can be. If you haven’t already, please read the first post to get a better idea of the methods I’m using. Download the slides and handout for this second mini lesson plan below:

Full credit to Mark Hancock for the excellent -ed endings maze, you can get it and many more from this excellent website he runs together with Annie McDonald. You can also get loads more great materials from his Instagram page. If you get the chance to attend one of his seminars/webinars, go for it, loads of great ideas.

This particular lesson plan focuses on -ed endings of regular verbs and consonant to vowel linking in phrasal verbs. If you’re following along with the project with your students, please let me know how it’s going in the comments.

Posted in Action Research, Listening Classes, Pronunciation Classes

Action Research: Pronunciation Project

This is the first of a series of blog posts I plan to write on a little pronunciation project I’m going to run with a C1/C2 group of Catalan/Spanish speaking students. If you’d like to try to run the same experiment with your own groups, you can download the materials I’m going to use at the bottom of this post.


How much can high-level students’ spoken pronunciation be improved by explicit focus on connected speech during class time? The plan is to use both reactive teaching/error correction and explicit, mini-lessons on specific elements of connected speech to work on students’ spoken output. Their progress will then be tracked through the use of submitted voice recordings.

Baseline Level

In order to gauge students current level of spoken pronunciation, I wrote a text, which you’ll find below, that contains many elements of connected speech:

Dusty Dreams

I have always wanted to play in a rock and roll band but I can’t seem to find the time to practice enough. If you don’t put in the hours, you’re always going to put off fulfilling an ambition. I want to do it, but the harder I try to pick up the guitar, the busier I get, and at the weekends I tend to go out most nights and those dreams are left back in the corner gathering dust with my guitar.

In class today I collected their baseline recordings. They completed a simple comprehension task on the text, then each recorded themselves reading the text on their own mobile phones and sent me the resulting audio file.

I will also have them record themselves completing a Cambridge “long turn” task during the next class in order to gather a non-scripted sample of their spoken output.

Pronunciation Development

The pronunciation work students will complete will take a number of forms:

  1. Explicit teaching of sentence stress, weak forms, and other elements of connected speech.
  2. Use of in their free time as ear-training/decoding.
  3. Exposure to a “model” version of the target text, read by me, for students to compare/mimic.
  4. Activities and worksheets such as Mark Hancock and Annie McDonald’s mazes.
  5. Reactive hot and cold error correction.

Tracking Development

The idea is to spend 15-20 mins a week explicitly focusing on pronunciation and then have students rerecord the original “Dusty Dreams” text in 6-8 weeks and compare the second recording to their original. I will also periodically collect long turn attempts to track the progress of more spontaneous/authentic speech. I also plan to use other texts or dialogue transcripts for later recordings as well as tracking students’ scores on C2 Proficiency reading comprehension tasks.

This is my first real attempt at action research, I’m probably doing a bunch of stuff wrong, but it’s exciting and my students seem to be up to the challenge! I’ll keep you posted.

If you’d like to follow along with your own students, you can download the first lesson plan, with the baseline text and a micro-lesson on weak forms of “to” and “for”, below:

Feel free to comment or give advice!

Posted in Guest Posts, Pronunciation Classes, Reading Classes, Writing Classes

Guest Post: Hot Take English – Limericks

This is another guest post by Alice at on the topic of limericks. Students learn the rhyme and syllable structure of a limerick, then write their own. Download the student handout and teacher’s notes below:

Check out Alice’s blog for more great lesson plans. The limericks used in this lesson plan are from

Posted in Pronunciation Classes

Pronunciation: Regular verbs in past simple


This is a handout listing the three pronunciation types of regular verbs:!265&authkey=!AI73yyOE0jOwaD4

First go through the three different types.

Tell students to put one hand on their throat and talk so that they can feel their vocal cords vibrating. Then tell the students to start saying some of the regular verbs from the list in their BASE FORM for example: watch, arrive.

Ask them to keep saying “watch” and “arrive” and think about the difference in vocal cord vibrations between the two.

If they don’t notice it explain to them that “watch” finishes with a voiceless sound (no vocal cords, just sound made with the mouth) verbs that finish with a voiceless sound (the handout lists the different spellings of these verbs) have a particular pronunciation in the past simple; a “t” sound: watched (watcht)

“arrive” however, ends in a voiced sound (using the vocal cords to make the “v” sound) so it’s pronunciation is different; a “d” sound: arrived

The difference between these two sounds can be difficult for students and needs a lot of practice. Especially in Spain it can take an eternity to iron out the “Edd” sound caused by Spanish speakers reading English phonetically, as they do their own language. Yesterday I play-ED football and watch-ED TV. So it takes frequent practice. Take special care to practice the pronunciation in a complete sentence on not focus on individual words; students can say “watcht watcht watcht watcht watcht, yesterday I watch-ED TV.”

The last group is easier to grasp; words ending in “d” or “t” have the sound “id” in the past simple: needed (need-ID). Though you are guaranteed to have a classroom full of students clutching their throats saying “wait, need, want” trying to work out if it should be a “t” or a “d” sound so it’s better to put them out of their misery early, maybe it’s better to explain the 3rd group first.