Read a Film Script for Pronunciation Practice

Reading is a great way to improve your vocabulary, but it can also be a good way to improve your pronunciation, especially if you can hear what you have to read.

Today's activity uses the IMSDB (Internet Movie Script database) and explores how you can use film scripts as reading to improve your pronunciation.

Task:
  • Find a movie in English that you like and which has good dialogue. If you don't have any English movies you may be able to find some at: http://quicksilverscreen.com/
  • Then go to http://www.imsdb.com/ and try to find the script.
  • There are lots of scripts on the IMSDB, but also a lot of advertising so be careful where you click. You can either search for the movie you want or browse by alphabet or genre.
  • Once you find the page with your movie on look for 'Read [movie name] script' and click on it. This will show you the movie script.

  • Here's an example of the script for the first Shrek movie which many people may have.
  • Once you find the script you want print up a few pages from it. Now find the movie and watch it. Try to follow the script and listen to the intonation of the speakers.
  • Intonation is the change in pitch and it usually either falls or rises at the ends of sentences or at commas just like punctuation in writing.

  • Try to mark on the script where you here the intonation rise or fall. Then try reading the script and trying to imitate the actors. try to copy their emotions and accents.
  • Read along while watching the the movie. You don't have to do this for the whole film, but trying to imitate small chunks will help to develop your pronunciation and your ability to hear and understand the changes in emotion that it conveys.
I hope you enjoy watching and reading movie scripts. Here you can find more activities to improve your pronunciation.

Related links for teachers:
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Nik Peachey

1 comment:

bourn said...

Great idea for using imsdb. So much you can do here. I once discovered that the script for a film I was studying with a class was a very early version of the screenplay, and had some significant differences, including whole scenes that did not make it into the film. Learners enjoyed staging the 'missing' scenes, and discussing the reasons for the differences, why some scenes ended up on the cutting room floor etc. This could be a good subject for a series: using move scripts in ELT!