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Unit 23. Remember, He Told Her.

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Introducing Sentence Stress

Unit 23; Part A

Individual words have a stress pattern, that is a pattern of strong and weak syllables. Sentences also have a stress pattern, and this is sentence stress. Sometimes a word and a sentence have the same stress pattern. Listen to these examples.

Ooo   
word            sentence
oOo   
word            sentence 
ooO   
word               sentence 
photograph   Answer me!
Canada         Doesn't he?
cabbages      Copy it!
September      Excuse me.
tomorrow        I think so.
remember       He told her.
afternoon        Do you smoke?
Japanese        One of these?
Portuguese     He's arrived

 

Unit 23; Part B

Short sentences and phrases in English have some typical stress patterns. Listen to the examples.

OoO      What's the time?    Yes, of course!    Thanks a lot!
OoOo    See you later!     Pleased to meet you!    Саn't you hear me?
oOoO    A piece of cake.    The shop was closed.    It's time to go.
OooO    What do you do?    Where do you live?    Give me a call.
ooOo    Are you coming?     Do you like it?    Is he happy?

Unit 23; Part C

There is normally a space between stressed syllables in a sentence. Unstressed syllables can be put in that space. The space stays more or less the same length whether one or more unstressed syllables are pushed into it. So for example, these three sentences take about the same length of time to say. Listen.

OOO                    Don't tell Mike.
OoOoOo              Go and speak to Mary.
OooOooOoo        Hurry and give it to Jonathan.

Unit 23; Part D

Stress patterns can help you hear the difference between similar sentences. For example, verbs with the negative ending -n't are always stressed. This helps us to hear the difference between can and can't in the following two sentences, because the two sentences have different stress patterns.
 ooO    He can talk. oOO        He can't talk.
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 23.2.jpg
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Note: You can find more about sentence stress in Units 32 to 40.

 



Exercises

flag.jpgListen and underline the sentence which does not have the same stress pattern as the word at the beginning of the line.
Key. 1. Close the door.
2. What happened?
3. They arrived.

Example:
    Ooo
1. oOo
2. ooO
3. oOo
cinema
tomato
afternoon
December
Wasn't it?
Close the door.
Does he drive?
It's open.
Hasn't she?
He told me.
Were you cold?
They arrived.
Don't you?
I like it.
What happened?
They listened.
flag.jpgWrite these sentences in the correct column. Then listen, check and repeat.
Key.23.3.jpg

 
The bus was late  Come and look.    Close the window.    What do you want?
The water's cold.   Give me a call.     What did she say?   Phone and tell me.
Nice to see you.    Where's the car?  It's cold and wee.     What's the time?
 


OooO            
oOoO
OoO                 
OoO              
  The bus was late

   

flag.jpgCombine phrases from the boxes А, В and С to make three sentences or phrases with these patterns:
OooO    OoOoOo    OooOooOoo. Then listen, check and repeat.
Key.1. Can't Pete drive?
2. Doesn't Oscar listen?
3. Can't you make Jennifer talk to you?

Example:

A
B
C
Half a
One
Cive me a         
bottle of   
glass of
cold
beer
orange juice
water



OooO   
OoOoOo   
OooOooOoo




One cold beer.                           
Half a glass of water                   
Give me a bottle of orange juice

A
B
C
Doesn't
Can't you make
Can't
Jennifer    
Pete
Oscar
listen
talk to you  
drive
 


OooO   
OoOoOo   
OooOooOoo



____________________________
____________________________
____________________________
flag.jpgListen and tick the sentence you hear, A or B.
Key.1. B
2. B
3. A
4. B
5. A
6. A


A
B

1.  I can swim.
2.  Are you coming?
3.  We were tired.
4.  She can help you.
5.  Can you see?
6.  They were talking.

I can't swim.
Aren't you coming?
We weren't tired.
She can't help you.
Can't you see?
They weren't talking.     
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