During the course of a conversation partner appointment with a student of English at DePaul University’s writing center, my partner and I stumbled onto a suggested technique for improving English speech and recognition. Pick up an audiobook AND its corresponding print text, and follow along viewing the text while the recording pronounces each word for you.
I believe it was Marge Piercy who said, “If you want to be a writer, be a reader.” I think there is much practical, as well as inspirational wisdom in this statement. The visual component of language is very important from a number of perspectives. How can you master punctuation, for example, if you don’t spend time seeing it in action? How can you learn to pronounce properly if you don’t have the image of the word in your head? As a writing center tutor at DePaul University, I feel there have been a number of times I have encountered problems from writers that might not have become problems if they had looked at words more rather than primarily hearing them.