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Episode 4 of the ELTtime podcast from Garnet Education

TeaBreak: accents, dialects, and varieties of English

In the fourth episode of ELTtime, we introduce a new feature: TeaBreak. A few of us here at Garnet grab a cuppa, and take half an hour to discuss something we’re passionate about within ELT. Today, Alice, Ella, Jaz and Rosie dive into why it’s problematic that RP is used as a standard, make some light-hearted observations about the differences between the way they speak, and discuss some interesting but bizarre Australian words – do you know what Manchester is? (And no, we don’t mean the city!)

Let us know if you enjoyed the episode! Get in touch with any suggestions or questions – you can find us at @garneteducation everywhere!

This episode features:

Ella Brice-Jeffreys

Ella was Editor at Garnet for just over two years. She likes the collaborative nature of working in a small office (and the people!). Her duties involved project managing a book series and working on a new edition of an academic English book. She has continued project managing in her new role. Outside of work, Ella likes reading gothic fiction and eating pasta.

Jaz Damen

Jaz is the Digital Editor – this involves overseeing the digitisation of our books. It’s a varied role which requires a keen eye for detail and a dash of creativity! She particularly enjoys seeing a project through, from start to finish. When not at work, she can be found reading and making videos about books at @travelsinfiction.

Alice Beecham

Alice is our Publishing Assistant, which mostly involves photo selection for our books, dealing with permissions, and helping out wherever she’s needed. She sends lots of emails, creates lots of spreadsheets and drinks lots of tea. Outside of work she can frequently be found losing pub quizzes and abandoning craft projects.

Rosie Cunningham

Rosie has been with Garnet for 2.5 years and is our Assistant Digital Editor. Her favourite part of the job is learning and using coding languages (HTML, CSS and JavaScript) to work on the company’s digital products.

0:20 – What’s TeaBreak?
1:03 – Introductions (Jaz, Alice, Ella and Rosie)
1:40 – Word (antipodean)

2:21 – Alice’s Australian accent (8:45)
2:41 – Alice’s Background
3:12 – British and American spellings and pronunciations
3:53 – Non-English speakers and non-British
4:41 – Australian vs British words
8:08 – Australian stereotypes
8:22 – Australian word (galah)

8:59 – Rosie’s Scottish accent
9:39 – Alice’s Australian accent
10:02 – Is this a ‘dialect’ thing or a ‘my family’ thing?

10:52 – Ella’s American background

Received Pronunciation (RP)
11:23 – What is RP and why can it be problematic?
11:46 – Class and region divides in pronunciation
12:42 – Issues with digital activities

Is there a ‘correct pronunciation’?
15:24 – Regional accent differences
16:02 – Slang and class
17:26 – Voice recognition and audio issues
19:02 – Students mimicking accents
19:49 – American media
20:07 – Australian word (Manchester)
21:00 – Australian idiom (shag on a rock)
21:34 – Final thoughts



Please note that the views, information, or opinions expressed during these podcasts are solely those of the individuals involved and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of Garnet Education. Any contributors to the podcasts who are themselves employees of Garnet Education express their views and opinions in a personal capacity and not as representatives of the company.

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