Native speakers don’t just speak English in individual words. We also use pre-memorized pairs of words that often co-occur.
When this happens, we often use stored pronunciation for linking words together as well. Give your accent modification students the same tools while helping them understand Native speakers better.
Familiarize them with this list of commonly linked word pairs and the rules for how and why these are linked together. Then have them make up their own sentences for each so that they can become familiar with these patterns not just intellectually, but as a motor speech sequence that they can later retrieve spontaneously without much thought. After all, native speakers are not consciously applying explicit rules when we use these. Instead, we are re-using patterns we’ve heard before chunked together as one new phrase containing both individual words’ meanings.
Finally, have them try the challenge sentences containing multiple links on the final page of this document.
Keywords: fluency disorder, accent modification, accent reduction, linking, reductions, English as a Second Language, ESL, English Language Learner, ELL