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  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #11

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    Is it more helpful than hearing the word pronounced? How did so many of us learn pronunciation without these symbols?

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #12

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    I have never been taught phonetic symbols. I have never taught myself either. I don't use them or understand them.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. probus's Avatar
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    #13

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    The only phonetic symbols I was taught were the dash over long vowels and a U over short vowels. Occasionally a short A had two dots over it, That was enough for me. In most cases, people learn pronunciation by hearing, not from phonetic symbols.
    I officially declare you an old guy, just like me.

  4. Raymott's Avatar
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    #14

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    I was never taught them in Australia in school between the 60s and 70s. No, it wasn't a pity. We could easily hear what the teacher and what our classmates were saying without symbols.
    As I recall, I don't think we learned any phonetic symbols for French at junior level either. But I've found it very useful later in life learning foreign languages without so much native aural feedback.

  5. Member
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    #15

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    Is it more helpful than hearing the word pronounced? How did so many of us learn pronunciation without these symbols?
    Why pupils in Taiwan and China are taught Zhuyin and Pinyin respectively in their Mandarin Chinese class?

  6. Roman55's Avatar
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    #16

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    Is it more helpful than hearing the word pronounced?
    No, of course not. Nothing is better for learning pronunciation than to hear a native speaker pronounce the words. But, since English spelling is notoriously unhelpful for pronunciation, if you are a non-native and encounter new words while reading, I think knowledge of phonetic symbols can be useful.

  7. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #17

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    Probus, I prefer "dinosaur".

  8. Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    #18

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    Quote Originally Posted by TaiwanPofLee View Post
    Why pupils in Taiwan and China are taught Zhuyin and Pinyin respectively in their Mandarin Chinese class?
    Different languages present different problems.

  9. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #19

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    Quote Originally Posted by TaiwanPofLee View Post
    Sounds vs words,
    Pronunciation vs spelling,
    My concern is:
    Whether English phonetic symbols should be included in the curriculum of primary school?
    I can't think of a reason for most Engish-speaking students to know about phonetic symbols. I'd never seen one until I discovered UsingEnglish.com.

    You might be right that it could be useful to people who teach English as a second language. But I'm not quite convinced. My Spanish teachers never used phonetic symbols to teach us Spanish.

    There are a lot of people and several organizations with ideas about simplifying and standardizing written and spoken English. But that seems meddlesome and misbegotten to me.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  10. Member
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    #20

    Re: Were you taught any kind of phonetic symbols at class in your primary school?

    Hey Charlie!

    1. Spanish is a phonetic language while English isn't.
    2. Understanding that Chinese is not a phonetic language, the governments both in Taiwan and China make it compulsory to teach primary-school pupils Zhuyin and Pinyin respectively.

    3. The British Council advocates teaching of English phonetic symbols.

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