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Pair your words with a respectful tone
“Beautiful tone, beautiful heart.”
-Shinichi Suzuki (1898-1998) Japanese violinist, creator of the “Suzuki Method”
Proper tone is essential for the effective conversationalist and communicator, after all, having a good conversation seems unattainable without clear, mutual respect. A student’s conversation partner may find them impolite or insincere if the tone isn’t appropriate!
Different situations also demand different tones. A happy occasion calls for enthusiasm while a sad one calls for sympathy. Using the appropriate tone lets the other person know that you’re paying attention and that you care about the conversation at hand.
Tone also acts as a clear indicator of meaning, more so than words. For instance, carrying a sarcastic tone alerts the listener the statement should not be taken literally. Native English speakers especially tend to use sarcastic more frequently than what English language learners expect!
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Create Compelling Conversations.
Jessica Lu, a first-year student at the University of Chicago, interned for Chimayo Press and the Compelling Conversations blog through the summer of 2014. Over the months, she has perused ESL textbooks, analyzed newspaper articles and tested out mobile apps, seeking out ways to inspire discussion. During the fall, the Compelling Conversations blog published her top 10 tips to create compelling conversations outside of the English classroom.
Photo Source: “Tennis shake hands after match” by kance – http://www.flickr.com/photos/kentmercurio/59629166/. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tennis_shake_hands_after_match.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Tennis_shake_hands_after_match.jpg