What is it?
Sounds Right is the British Council’s first pronunciation chart for learners and teachers worldwide. This app is for the iPad (only). You can think of it as an interactive version of the phonemic chart that decorates the walls of our classrooms.
- Pure vowels are arranged the same way as in the IPA chart: according to mouth shape (left to right, lips wide / round – top to bottom, jaw closed / open).
- Diphthongs are grouped in rows according to their second sound.
- Learners are provided with the pure sound, along with three sample words that model the pronunciation
- Downloadable for free from the iTunes app store
How can I use it in the classroom?
Unlike some of the other applications we’ve featured here, we’re suggesting that the use of this app need not “take centre stage” in your lessons. Rather, it can play a supporting role to be accessed ‘online’ during a lesson at an individual learner’s needs dictate. For example, BC Korea’s India Cranna has reported great success using the app to support her Elementary learners as they are introduced to the phonemic chart for the first time, as well as in subsequent ‘integration’ into the course. After a brief introduction (perhaps following Adrian Underhill’s suggested procedure on pages 99-110 of “Sound Foundations”), the iPads running SoundsRight could be brought to subsequent lessons to allow the learners access to the sounds associated with the symbols of the chart, without being dependent on the teacher for correct modeling of the phonemes. In this way, use of SoundsRight can both encourage students to learn the phonemic chart, as well as improve their overall learning independence.