Tongue Twisters

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Diction Exercises and Tongue Twisters

To make sure they get your message
Why should you do diction exercises or Tongue Twisters?

Because your speech content may be great, you may look fantastic but unless your audience can UNDERSTAND what you’re saying, your message is lost. However, Tongue Twisters will help you learn how to speak clearly. An athlete does warm-ups and stretches before an event: a singer does likewise.
These exercises are the speaker’s warm-up equivalent. They prepare and train you to speak with ease.

The specific benefits of diction/Tongue Twisters exercises are:

  • Strengthening and stretching the muscles involved in speech
  • Bringing to your attention habitual speech patterns which may be less than perfect.
  • Good diction is NOT about changing your accent or making you ‘talk posh’.
  • It is about clarity – making sure what you say is heard.

The most commonly known and used diction exercises are Tongue Twisters.

There are literally squillions of them, each focusing on either a single letter, or a letter combination. Moreover,  they’re complete nonsense – phrases and word combinations chosen purely for the way they make you work to say them clearly.
While, Tongue twisters have long been an integral part of a public speaker’s tool kit. As well as being fun, they are extremely effective.

Diction Exercises: Tips & Tongue Twisters

Beginners’ tips

  • Start slowly and carefully.
  • Make sure the start and end of each word is crisp.
  • Repeat the phrase, getting faster and faster while maintaining clarity. If you trip over words, stop and start again.
  • In addition exercise for improving your tongue’s flexibility and agility add “Mrs Tongue Does Her Housework”
  • Therefore, To your practice session. These stretches will help enormously.
  • Are you turning people’s ears off through mispronunciation?
  • Furthermore, Get them tuned in and find out how to pronounce words properly.

Diction Exercises for ‘B’ words:

Betty bought a bit of butter, but she found the butter bitter, so Betty bought a bit of better butter to make the bitter butter better.
Bill had a billboard.
Bill also had a board bill.
The board bill bored Bill,
So Bill sold his billboard
Then the board bill
No longer bored Bill,
But though he had no board bill,

Diction Exercises for ‘D’ words:

Did Doug dig David’s garden or did David dig Doug’s garden?
Do drop in at the Dewdrop Inn

Diction Exercises for ‘F’ words:

Four furious friends fought for the phone
Five flippant Frenchmen fly from France for fashions

Diction Exercises for ‘H’ words:

How was Harry hastened so hurriedly from the hunt?
In Hertford,Hereford and Hampshire hurricanes hardly ever happen

Diction Exercises for ‘J’ words:

James just jostled Jean gently.
Jack the jailbird jacked a jeep.

Diction Exercises for ‘K’ words:

Kiss her quick, kiss her quicker, kiss her quickest.
My cutlery cuts keenly and cleanly.

Diction Exercises for ‘L’ words:

Literally literary.
Larry sent the latter a letter later.
Lucy lingered, looking longingly for her lost lap-dog.

Diction Exercise for ‘M’ wods:

Moses supposes his toeses are roses,
But Moses supposes erroneously,
As Moses supposes his toeses to be.

Diction Exercise for ‘N’ and ‘U’ sounds:

You know New York,
You need New York,

Know you need unique New York.

Diction Exercises for ‘P’ words:

Peter piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.
If Peter piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
Where’s the peck of pickled peppers that Peter Piper picked?
Pearls, please, pretty Penelope,
Pretty Penelope, pretty Penelope,

Diction Exercises for ‘Q’ words:

Quick kiss. Quicker kiss. Quickest kiss.
Quickly, quickly, quickly, quickly, quickly…

Diction Exercises for ‘R’ words:

Round the rugged rocks the ragged rascal ran.
Reading and writing are richly rewarding.

Diction Exercises for ‘S’ words:

Six thick thistle sticks
Theosophist Thistles, the thistle sifter, in sifting a sieve of unsifted thistles, thrust three thousand thistles through the thick of his thumb.
The shrewd shrew sold Sarah seven sliver fish slices.
Sister Susie sat on the sea shore sewing shirts for sailors
For nobody’s tosses are posies of roses
(Pronounce the word ‘toeses’ to rhyme with ‘Moses’.)

Diction Exercises for ‘T’ words and ‘V’ words

Ten tame tadpoles tucked tightly in a thin tall tin.
Two toads, totally tired, trying to trot to Tewkesbury.

Vincent vowed vengeance very vehemently.
Vera valued the valley violets.

Lastly, two especially for your tongue
Red leather, yellow leather…
Red lorry, yellow lorry…

Then, more for good measure!

‘I am the very pattern of a modern Major-General;
I’ve information vegetable, animal, and mineral;
I know the Kings of England, and I quote the fights historical,
From Marathon to Waterloo, in order categorical;
I’m very well acquainted too with matters mathematical,
I understand equations, both simple and quadratical,
About binomial theorem I’m teeming with a lot o’ news,
With many cheerful facts about the square of the hypotenuse.
I’m very good at integral and differential calculus,
I know the scientific names of beings animalculous,
In short, in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral,
I am the very model of a modern Major-General.’