« PreviousContinue »
trate the chief phases under consideration as the work progresses. According to the writer's experience, student choice, in general, is apt to be either careless, lacking in definite purpose, badly adapted to specific needs, lurid, or otherwise unsatisfactory for anything like systematic training.
The practice passages, it is felt, in addition to being carefully chosen, should be sufficiently brief to permit of thorough preparation, to give frequent opportunities to each member of the class, and to allow the instructor time for a brief definite criticism in every case.
In preparing the text in accord with these ideas, the writer is, of course, largely indebted to successive classes of students. The character of the book has been de termined by their reactions, their limitations, their capacities, and the results which they have shown from various methods of attack, At the same time, a large debt is gratefully acknowledged to an extensive bibliography, which has from time to time afforded suggestion, confirmation, illustrative material, and in some cases, perhaps, a warning.
Rather than that of adding to the already elaborate array of vocal principles, the present task has been to choose and to exclude, to stress certain aspects (such as the sounds of the language — the basic factor of good speaking), and to present with relative simplicity other elements (such as inflection) — all with a view to practical utilization by the student, not only during his course, but, especially, afterward.
The special feature of the book is the combination of principles with classified selections for practical application. For reasons stated above, the length of these passages is a compromise between the familiar, brief reading-exercise and the more elaborate selection of the usual collection. As to the general character of the passages, effort has been made to provide groups which afford variety, interest, and literary excellence.
Classification and definition of vowel sounds
The aims of vowel study and practice
Analysis of good pronunciation
Giving the correct vowel values
Consulting the dictionary.