If you use this  1 Week English Speaking Practice Plan you will learn:

Sound Better in 7 Days,

Learn things to last a lifetime,

How to pronounce English sounds,

How to pronounce words,
Tongue Twisters,
Make your voice stronger,

Overcome mental blocks in English, 

Sounding Better in English,

English Intonation,

A Great 1 Week English Speaking Practice Plan.

 7 Day Lessons
Day 1    Practice Breathing

Breathing is the most important things you can do to improve.

Day 2 Exercise Your Voice

Talking more will make you stronger and more comfortable.

Day 3 More Practice, and Selfie Video

Seeing yourself is really crazy, you will learn a lot!

Day 4 Something different called tongue twisters.

Th#tongue-twisters these are difficult to say. If you can say these you can say anything!

Day 5 Intonation in English

This tells people how we feel when we talk. It changes the meaning.

Day 6 English words are many sounds in one word.

This is the second best thing you can learn to improve your speaking.

Day 7 Sound smarter and more fluent.

Speaking in threes and using more complex language you already know.

practice breathing

<back to lessons

Day 1: Begin To Get Strong: Practice Breathing

Breathing is the most important part of speaking English.

before speaking take a deep breath in (inhale) and hold the air.

Use that air in your chest (diaphragm) to make English Sounds.

In order to practice, take a deep breath and say something simple like:

inhale:  My name is (your name).

inhale:  I am ( your age) years old.

inhale:  I live in (your city)

inhale:   I like to go to the movies with my friends.

OK! Practice these several times until you can do it.

Then it is important to slow down and remember to take a breath before each sentence.

Difficulty: Although  this is very easy to do. Everyone knows how to breathe and inhale.

It is not easy to do in practice because some languages do not do this, and people think it takes too much time and they don't sound good.

It is necessary to sound good. Practice this. It is funny.  Look in the mirror or practice with a friend.  You must learn to breath in and inhale before you talk if you ever want to sound good and have good pronunciation in English.

Practice this breathing in at every period at the end of a sentence:


inhale The rose is a rose,
inhale And was always a rose.
inhale But the theory now goes
inhale That the apple’s a rose,
inhale And the pear is, and so’s
inhale The plum, I suppose.
inhale The dear only knows
inhale What will next prove a rose.
inhale You, of course, are a rose –
inhale But were always a rose.

That is a lot of breathing!  Good Work!

Last Exercise for today:

Say this without inhaling:

Hi my name is _______

I really like to go to the movies

I love to go with my family or friends

I try and go to the movies once a month.

Does each sentence get quieter? 

Is your voice losing energy?

Try again and breath before starting each line.

*Hi my name is _______

*I really like to go to the movies

*I love to go with my family or friends

*I try and go to the movies once a month.

If you are doing this the right way, you will sound better.

Keep practicing this breathing first, it takes a while to remember.

OK, that is it for the first day.  It is so simple yet so difficult, I know!

Once you can do this and remember, all English Speaking will become easier.

Exercise your voice

<back to lessons

Day 2: Exercise Your Voice    Read , Breathe, Speak Out Loud. 

Try and not read too quietly.  Here are two short stories to read out loud,

  Your voice may get tired because even 20 minutes is much more than most students speak in a week or month.  Breathing will help you be stronger.

"Paper Menagerie"

by Ken Liu

One of my earliest memories starts with me sobbing. I refused to be soothed no matter what Mom and Dad tried.

Dad gave up and left the bedroom, but Mom took me into the kitchen and sat me down at the breakfast table.

"Kan, kan," she said, as she pulled a sheet of wrapping paper from on top of the fridge. For years, Mom carefully sliced open the wrappings around Christmas gifts and saved them on top of the fridge in a thick stack.

She set the paper down, plain side facing up, and began to fold it. I stopped crying and watched her, curious.

She turned the paper over and folded it again. She pleated, packed, tucked, rolled, and twisted until the paper disappeared between her cupped hands. Then she lifted the folded-up paper packet to her mouth and blew into it, like a balloon.

"Kan," she said. "Laohu." She put her hands down on the table and let go.

A little paper tiger stood on the table, the size of two fists placed together. The skin of the tiger was the pattern on the wrapping paper, white background with red candy canes and green Christmas trees.

I reached out to Mom's creation. Its tail twitched, and it pounced playfully at my finger. "Rawrr-sa," it growled, the sound somewhere between a cat and rustling newspapers.

I laughed, startled, and stroked its back with an index finger. The paper tiger vibrated under my finger, purring.

"Zhe jiao zhezhi," Mom said. This is called origami.

I didn't know this at the time, but Mom's kind was special. She breathed into them so that they shared her breath, and thus moved with her life. This was her magic.

Pinocchio Story ~ A Fairy Tale Story in English for Kids 

This is the Fairy Tale Pinocchio Story, a Bedtime Story in English for Kids. This story has been adapted from The Adventures of Pinocchio (1883) by Italian writer Carlo Collodi and the Disney version. It is brought to you by Stories to Grow by. 

A Boy Made of Wood

Long ago in Italy there lived on old clock-maker named Geppetto. Tick-tick-TOCK! Tick-tick-TOCK! went all the clocks in his shop. When he worked, Geppetto felt happy. But when he rested, a sad feeling came over him. “Ah!” he would think. “All my life and no child to call my own!”

One day Geppetto carved a puppet from wood in the shape of a boy. The arms and legs could move. He cut and sewed a nice outfit for the puppet, as if it were a real boy. "I will call you Pinocchio," said Geppetto.  That night, Geppetto lay the wooden puppet down onto the bed.

From out of the window, a big star twinkled bright.  Geppetto looked out the window to the twinkling star.

“Bright star,” said Geppetto. “If I could make one wish, it would be that I could have a real boy of my own.” But of course, he knew that was not possible.

That night, the same big star swooshed right into Geppetto’s room. It changed into a Blue Fairy!  The Blue Fairy flew over to the bed.

“Little wood puppet,” said the Blue Fairy. “In the morning, you will be able to walk and talk like a real boy.” She tapped the puppet one time with her wand. “And if you can prove that you are brave and true, someday you will be a real boy.”

Pinocchio’s eyes opened.

“One more thing,” said the Blue Fairy. Suddenly. a cricket appeared. He was dressed mighty fine -and could talk! “Meet the Cricket", said the Blue Fairy. He will stay with you to help you make wise choices.” And with that, the Blue Fairy went swoosh and was gone! Out of the window and up into the night sky.

When Geppetto woke up the next morning, he said, “I will go take my puppet out of bed.” But the bed was empty!

“Here I am, Father!” said Pinocchio from the other side of the room.

Geppetto swung around. “What? You can talk?”

“Yep! I am Pinocchio, your boy!”

“How can this be?” said Geppetto in shock. Then he said, “But who cares?” He rushed over and swept the wooden puppet into his arms. “Pinocchio, my son!” he said in great happiness.

Keep Reading here if you are not too tired, or read another time!

Are you tired?   Was that a lot of talking?

Usually my students say wow I can talk a long time!

How was your breathing?  Did you remember?

Did you read too fast? (You should read slowly)

Anyways, congratulations, you are still here and trying.

I hope you feel a little stronger and better. It is only 2 days!

<back to lessons


more practice and selfie video

Day 3: Begin To Get Strong: More Practice, and Selfie Video

First some help for being shy and quiet.

It is very common for people to talk softly or quietly.  It makes sense.  if you are unsure of your voice, why speak loudly?   

You must speak up or no one will understand you. 

Maybe they won't even hear you?


Speaking Too Soft and Quiet is a really big problem.  

No matter how good your pronunciation is no one will understand you if they can't hear you.  I teach a lot of teens, businesses, and university students in South East Asia who are so shy and quiet when speaking English.  I can assure you many are very, very loud and noisy everywhere else.

Being shy and not confident is more than a feeling,

sometimes it is an actual psychological condition called


It means fear of foreign languages.

This condition which I suppose shy people suffer from differing degrees, creates a mental block that makes it hard for people to think when speaking a new language. Total  fear.  This would make anyone very nervous.

Which comes first the shyness and then nervousness or the nervousness and then being shy?  Who knows?   The fear of speaking or being shy is real. 

You can overcome it by practicing alone until you feel confident you sound ok.

I have taught hundreds of students who are so shy, they will never, ever speak English.  I cannot tell them to stop, but they should stop wasting money on schools or lessons.

How Can You Stop Being Shy?

Practice.   Read out loud. There are many ways I teach and other teach.  You must do them.  You must try.  You must become better and to hear your voice so it sounds usual, and you must learn how to answer some questions.  Then you won't be so shy and get better and better.


Read about selfies to practice.

Then take a selfie video (velfie).

Watch the video and try and learn a little thing you can improve.

Take another video.  Compare them.

Remember to breathe before speaking!

Why are selfies so popular?

But first, let me take a selfie.

Everyone’s doing it - from Justin Bieber to US President Barak Obama. Just about everyone with a social media account has done it at some point. Lots of people post selfies every single day.

If you borrow someone’s phone and scroll through their pictures, you’ll probably see lots of pictures - some good, some bad - taken with their front-facing camera. Selfies have become so much a part of pop culture that there is even a song about taking a selfie. But why have selfies suddenly become so popular?

While people might have tried to take photos of themselves twenty years ago, it is far more popular now than it ever has been before. The word “selfie” was the Oxford Dictionary Word of the Year in 2013 - that’s how much of a craze taking pictures of yourself has become.

Here are some of the reasons that taking selfies has recently become so popular:

1. The technology makes it easier than it ever has been before. In the past, if you wanted to take a picture of yourself, you had to hold a film camera facing yourself and hope that one of the two or three snaps you took would turn out when the pictures are developed.

Even when digital cameras came on the scene, which made deleting pictures and taking more pictures fast and easy, you still couldn’t actually see yourself while you were taking the picture.

The front-facing camera, however, has made it extremely fast and easy to take a selfie. You’ve also got the selfie stick, which might look extremely dorky, but is actually a great way to take selfies, especially of more than one person.

This is technology that previous generations just didn’t have.

OK a few questions about your reading and videos (velfies)

  1. Did you breathe ok?
  2. did you speak loudly?
  3. Did you improve the second time?

Great!  You have done a lot already and it is only day 3!  Good Work!

<back to lessons

something different called tongue twisters

Day 4: Something different, difficult and very funny! 

These are called tongue twisters.  They are provided by:  

1st International Collection of Tongue Twisters

If you like these there are many more on the site.

Tongue Twisters are little poetic sentences that have sounds that are difficult to say together.  Things like Unique New York, or Thousand Acre Thistle

They are supposed to make your tongue twist and become confused. 

These are for fun.  Have a contest with your friends or family!

Oh, 1 more thing!  don't try and understand them, many don't make sense.


Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.
A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked.
If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
Where's the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?


I saw Susie sitting in a shoe shine shop.
Where she sits she shines, and where she shines she sits.


How many boards
Could the Mongols hoard
If the Mongol hordes got bored?

from the comic Calvin & Hobbes, by Bill Waterson


How can a clam cram in a clean cream can?


Send toast to ten tense stout saints' ten tall tents.

by Raymond Weisling


Denise sees the fleece,
Denise sees the fleas.
At least Denise could sneeze
and feed and freeze the fleas.


Coy knows pseudonoise codes.

by Pierre Abbat


Sheena leads, Sheila needs.


The thirty-three thieves thought that they thrilled the throne throughout Thursday.


Something in a thirty-acre thermal thicket of thorns and thistles thumped and thundered threatening the three-D thoughts of Matthew the thug - although, theatrically, it was only the thirteen-thousand thistles and thorns through the underneath of his thigh that the thirty year old thug thought of that morning.

by Meaghan Desbiens


Can you can a can as a canner can can a can?


Seth at Sainsbury's sells thick socks.


You cuss, I cuss, we all cuss, for asparagus!

from a Far Side cartoon by Gary Larson


Roberta ran rings around the Roman ruins.


Clean clams crammed in clean cans.


Six sick hicks nick six slick bricks with picks and sticks.


I wish to wish the wish you wish to wish, but if you wish the wish the witch wishes, I won't wish the wish you wish to wish.


Stupid superstition!


There was a fisherman named Fisher
who fished for some fish in a fissure.
Till a fish with a grin,
pulled the fisherman in.
Now they're fishing the fissure for Fisher.


World Wide Web


To sit in solemn silence in a dull, dark dock,
In a pestilential prison, with a life-long lock,
Awaiting the sensation of a short, sharp shock,
From a cheap and chippy chopper on a big black block!
To sit in solemn silence in a dull, dark dock,
In a pestilential prison, with a life-long lock,
Awaiting the sensation of a short, sharp shock,
From a cheap and chippy chopper on a big black block!
A dull, dark dock, a life-long lock,
A short, sharp shock, a big black block!
To sit in solemn silence in a pestilential prison,
And awaiting the sensation
From a cheap and chippy chopper on a big black block!

by W.S. Gilbert of Gilbert and Sullivan from The Mikado


Picky people pick Peter Pan Peanut-Butter, 'tis the peanut-butter picky people pick.

from a commercial


If Stu chews shoes, should Stu choose the shoes he chews?


Luke Luck likes lakes.
Luke's duck likes lakes.
Luke Luck licks lakes.
Luck's duck licks lakes.
Duck takes licks in lakes Luke Luck likes.
Luke Luck takes licks in lakes duck likes.

from Dr. Seuss' Fox in Socks


Seventy seven benevolent elephants

harder than it seems


There those thousand thinkers were thinking how did the other three thieves go through.


Now you have said the hardest things to say in English and you are still alive.

Your worst fears about terrible English, and you did it, you said them,

you laughed (I hope) and you finished Day 4.  Thank you!


  1. Did you notice some are more difficult for you?  These have the sounds you have problems with and should practice.
  2. When you begin saying these knowing they are difficult, did you relax more not so worried about being perfect? It is hard to say these perfectly.
  3. Did you say any more than once and see how each time you got better?  Most people can become pretty good the by the 3rd time. Sme I still have trouble with!

<back to lessons

Intonation in English

Day 5: Intonation

Information about intonation. 

Intonation in English explains how people feel and the meaning of their words. 

It is very important in speaking naturally and understanding what people are really saying.

Words that express feeling are often adjectives.  Let's practice intonation. 

The green highlighted words are emphasized. Say them in a higher voice and louder.

Intonation: The bolded words are ones that are stronger.

The big rabbit jumped so high it disappeared!

I thought I would never see my best friend again.

I felt I had a big problem.

Words of frequency and other descriptive words are often important.

I often go to the cinema.

I won't ever go to that place again.

Negative words or ofte positive words:
No way am I going out with you!
I am not handsome!
I won't take your money if you show me where you hide it.
Intonation can also go down. 
Often when there is a downwards intonation it means the opposite or something else.  
Any words that are different are called "pitch words".  
Pitch is a musical term for higher or lower.
  • altered pitch
  • lengthening
  • increase in loudness

There are alsos. stressed syllables.

Watch this movie to hear how I change the meaning of sentences with by altering the pitch.


  1.     Did you like it?
  2.     Did your voice begin to get into the rhythm?
So Cool!  Day 5!   The next lesson will be easier, I promise!
English words are many sounds in one word

<back to lessons

Day 6: English words are many sounds in one word,

Lastly reading slowly to focus on each word and sound. 

English words are many sounds in one word.

This is the most important thing to know about English Pronunciation: Words are made up of sounds. Each word has many different sounds. 

This is difficult for other languages that are made up of one sound. 

Two examples:  Envy (N-V)     

 Excess  (X-S) This is too simple, we need to have more detail: 

World:  How many Sounds?  2,3 ,4?

Wo R L D   = 4 sounds!   English = E N Gl I SH  = 5 sounds! 

Often people will think that speaking faster and linking sounds is good English but really it makes your pronunciation worse.  I speak slower than most of my students and I sound clear and almost perfect.  Slower is not better.

Try these words and see if you can find how many sounds there are:

  1. FAST 
  2. SONG
  3. BLING
  4. SOUND
  5. APPLE
  9. FIX

Here are the answers:

  1. FAST = 3
  2. SONG = 3
  3. BLING = 4
  4. SOUND = 3
  5. APPL = 3
  6. BEDROOM = 4
  7. KITCHEN = 4
  8. QUESTION = 4
  9. FIX = 3
  10. HEALTHY =3  


  1. Does this surprise you?
  2. Do you say each sound or speak fast and link them?
  3. Which word is hardest to say?

Talk about mental blocks.  (not knowing what to say) and some great advice for sounding really good when you speak English. 

It isn't anything new to learn, just changing how you answer and talk. 

Mental Blocks are when you can't think and can't find the words.

Do you study vocabulary?   Do you know a lot of vocabulary?  Yes, Yes.   Can you remember the vocabulary when speaking?  Maybe or No.

When I am speaking and having fun I don't have problems remembering vocabulary.  In class, students at the beginning of class are usually shy and don't want to answer and don't know what to say.  

My class is active, so by the middle of class or the end, students are speaking and active and remember more words and do not have so much trouble.  

During games students can relax and be competitive and remember things much easier.  It is amazing to see the same students immobilized (mental blocked) come alive and begin to speak and have fun.  

It is proven that relaxed the brain can function much better.  When we are stressed or worried or can't remember or find the word we want to say we get stressed.  This makes it even more difficult to talk. 

All I can say is people appreciate trying to use English more than they check for mistakes.   

Often mistakes are not serious and you can communicate your idea. 

If you can communicate you can make a friend or get something done. 

These all make trying and not worrying about mistakes more advantageous.  

I currently am learning an Asian Language.  It is difficult for me.  I lived in a high rise building on the 23rd floor. While riding the elevator several times a day, people were friendly and talked to me asking me questions. 

After a while I could predict the questions and listen for keywords.  People thought my skills were very good!  Not really.... 

I noticed something amazing and learned something for my students.  I can not explain it any other way than it is because of mental blocks due to being nervous. 

When I was not paying attention I could understand pretty well.  When I was focusing and trying my hardest to understand my comprehension went down. 

I would think that trying really hard would improve it bt it did not.

I am not saying that when listening you do not need to focus on the person talking.  I am saying that when I was nervous, I could not understand as well.

OK You have finished Day 6 and an important lesson.  Breathing and saying each sound are two of the most important pats of good English Pronunciation.

Next time is the Day 7.  I hope you feel better and have some tools to Improve English.

<back to lessons

sound smarter and more fluent

Day 7: Now it is time to sound great. Sound smarter and more fluent.

This is based on the mental trick of thinking of 3 things about a topic, and using them in a more advanced or complex sentence. 

This also is a higher form of English. 

The best part is you can do this right now using information you already have.

Here are some answers to the question

"What do you like to eat?"

  1. Chicken
  2. I like chicken.
  3. I like to eat chicken.
  4. Chicken, Fish, and Bread
  5. I like to eat chicken, fish, and bread. 

All are good depending on your level. Now ask yourself

"Do you know these adjectives?"   

  1. Yummy
  2. Fried
  3. hot
  4. Spicy
  5. cheese

Add these to the list short answer:

  1. I like to eat spicy chicken, fried fish, and cheese bread.

See how much better this sounds? 

It is a more advanced form of language that is a criteria in many standardized tests. 

Then, lets "bump it up a notch" and add more information and connecting words.

Use clauses and short phrases to explain more:

  1. I like to eat my mom's spicy chicken, fried fish at KFC, and hot cheese bread from the cafe.
  2. I like to eat my mom's spicy chicken because it is hot and tastes good, fried fish from KFC because it is salty, and hot cheese bread from the cafe because it smells so great.

Look back at the original list and short answers.  These answers are better language, give more information for conversation, and will help you sound smarter and score higher on tests.

Ok this is the end of Day 7.  I hope you will use these lessons again and again and create your own lessons from them.   These lessons are the basics of good speaking.  You must continue to learn vocabulary and other things.  It is equally important to know how to use what you know and have learned. 

I hope you check out our pronunciation lessons, our other ideas about Learning English, and 

Pronunciation Evaluation   

Thank you learning from Speak English Today


<back to lessons

Practice Breathing

Exercise Your Voice

More Practice, and Selfie Video

Something different called tongue twisters.

Intonation in English

English words are many sounds in one word.

Sound smarter and more fluent.