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I'm studying to become an accent reductionist and I'm interested in what ways people already use to reduce their accents in foreign languages.
Do you sing foreign songs?
repeat foreigners speaking their native tongues?
repeat actors in film/tv?
try to put on a French accent when speaking French?
practice individual letter sounds?
practice sounds word by word?
so as for me it is better to listen and to repeat foreign songs, and watching movies and try to copy the way of speaking
I listen to my teacher correcting me and repeat after her\him ( if it is necessary several times). Then I practice at home and read at the next lesson.
If the\a teacher can't explain what to do, it is a good idea to find another teacher)))
I agree that there are students\people that will never be able to get rid of their accents, but they should work hard at least to reduce them(accents).
Only your teacher (better a foreigner) can hear the accent at the beginning, that is why we need him\her. That is why we( students) should not blame ourselves for bad sounds at the beginning.
There are very few people who can imitate sounds correctly from the very beginning (of studying), I think. So it is better not to repeat\remember wrong sounds( watching TV, for example), because later it will take more time to re-learn them\ or re-teach you.
Practice makes perfect.
Here is what works for me:
The first thing is that I start listening to a language, for instance in movies or songs, just to get an idea of what it may sound like. Then I try to make a mental note to myself which says "although they may use the same letters, these letters do not sound like my native ones!". I do this by listening carefully to native speakers again, but this time focussing on single letters. Many languages have different sounds for O, L, R... to name just a few. The next part is the hard one: Now I try to imitate these sounds in words that I am learning which means I listen carefully to a native speaker pronouncing certain words (language tapes or a teacher will do the trick). Next, I look at the stress of a word which is very important if you want to get rid of an accent. Finally, I try to listen to the melody of speech and try to copy it. This can result in slightly confusing situations, as one might end up copying the melodies of speech from different regions. I know it's not a regional thing, but I used to copy the American English phenomenon of saying standard sentences like a question. Like?, when I would tell this story?, it would sound like I am always asking for confirmation?. I did this until people told me "don't. just don't."
In the end, I guess it comes down to just paying attention to the foreign language and accepting that it is not like other languages which we already know.