In general terms and every day encounters, I don't mind at all, I think diversity of accents adds to the flavour of life but when it comes to actually teaching English , it feels like a bit of a problem. We are teaching abroad in an Asian country. They are familiar with American English but I am the first British.
For example, Americans and British pronounce words quite differently and thats to be expected. I really don't mind the intonations of how certain sylabols are emphasised more etc.
But my thing I have a problem with is the way certain letters are said, seemingly entirely wrong.
- I. e, whenever there is a "T" in the middle of a word, Americans will never pronounce the T. Instead, "T" will be replaced with a "D" in vocalisation.
- For example,
- "Water" becomes "wader",
- "better" becomes "bedder"
- "Weather" becomes "Wedder"
- "H" beginning words also miss out the H entirely,
- "herb" is said like "erb",
- "house" is "ouse" etc
"A" is also generally said exactly the same as an "E"
- I ran into this problem when I was saying names and may students were convinced their names were said different.
- Amanda thought it was "Emenda"
My student Annie pronouced her name as "Any", I had to correct her but than I wrote the two words "Annie" and "Any" on the board asking her how you say each... they pronounced them exactly the same and said they were the same.
I don't know whether I should switch letters to be letters they aren't since of course I'm not American or correct them since it seems like it could be a bit counter intuitive since most of their exposure to English likely will be american?
- Correct them with British36% (4)17% (1)29% (5)Vote
- Convert letters and teach American36% (4)0% (0)24% (4)Vote
- Other28% (3)83% (5)47% (8)Vote
Most Helpful Guy
As long as they are saying the words in a comprehensible way, leave it alone. Trying to make a big deal of it because you dislike the differences between American and British accents is just going to confuse your students. They will encounter all sorts of English-speaking accents in their lives and realize there is no one 'correct' accent. Exposure to your way of speaking and your colleague's will be beneficial as they have to hear the different ways you are saying the same words.1