Enrich Your English
A Workshop at V N Godhani English School
On the 19thof December, Fluentlingua conducted a workshop titled “Enrich your English” at V N Godhani English School in Katargam. About 250 students of standards 7thand 8th attended this workshop. Keenness to learn was writ large on their bright faces right from the beginning and was maintained throughout the programme.
The principal introduced Dr Dharmendra Sheth and Mr Hasmukh Umaria, chief trainers from Fluentlingua, to the wide-eyed students unable to contain their impatience to get started.
After being felicitated, the trainers started the program and the students’ eyes were glued to the screen as Dr Sheth started the workshop with the presentation “Fun with English”. He explained with examples that “English is English”, and often it is not logical. This sure got the participants’ rapt attention and aroused their interest and curiosity. The stage was thus set. The title itself has so much learning potential in it, said Dr Sheth. The word “enrich” is stressed on the second syllable whereas the word “English” is stressed is on the first syllable. He went on to explain the importance of correct pronunciation. He explained that the word “pronunciation” is pronounced differently by different people. It sure brought some giggles as expected. And as the students tried to pronounce that word, it dawned upon them that there was a lot to be done in this area of English. This gave them the impetus to improve their pronunciation.
There were practice sessions on sounds, word stress, rhythm and intonation. To give the participants a clear idea of correct pronunciation, Mr Umaria first spoke the words, and the students then repeated them, trying to copy as best as they could. It was an eye-opener and an ear-opener session. By now, the hall resounded with English of good quality. This proved the point that imitation is the key to learning a second or foreign language.
Then there were some activities to learn word stress. Dr Sheth demonstrated the shift in word stress according to parts of speech, and explained the impact of suffixes and prefixes on pronunciation of words.
Students were then made aware of the importance of rhythm in spoken English. The concept of sentence stress was brought to students’ attention via nursery rhymes. A few sentence patterns were drilled too.
Correct intonation leading to identifying whether the word, phrase or sentence is a question or a statement was another lively exercise.
Then the students were given a passage to read aloud. It was putting-it-all-together session. A few students performed this on stage. The students cheered and were obviously impressed by their co-students’ performance on stage. It was evident, according to the teachers present, that after a few hours of the workshop, there was a perceptible improvement in their students’ speech.
The atmosphere was one of achievement and happiness. The programme ended with a vote of thanks.
Fluentlingua takes this opportunity to thank the management of the school, the principal, and Mr Haridas Patil, HOD English for making such a workshop possible.