Lesson Planning of Patterns of Rhythm, Stress and Intonation

Students` learning outcomes

  • Reproduce in speech, appropriate patterns of rhythm, stress and intonation through listening to stories and poems read aloud in class.

Information for Teachers

  • Intonation Patterns: It is the variation in the pitch of the speaker`s voice used to give information or change meaning.
  • There are three basic pitches in English; normal, high, and low.
  • The normal pitch is where the voice usually moves between middle and high. .
  • High is where the voice rises to indicate information focus.
  • Low is where the voice falls, usually at the end of sentence.

  • Stress: some syllables are stronger than other syllables and called stressed. (When we put emphasis on a word or sentence it becomes a stressed word or a stressed sentence.
  • Importance of stress is that the position of stress can change the meaning of the word.

Stress and Intonation

  • Syllable: syllable is a group of letters that has one vowel (a, e, i, o, u) sound in it.
  • Use of punctuation marks: full stop (.) shows a short pause, exclamation mark (!)
  • Represents emotion like happiness, sorrow, shock, fear, question m ark (?) shows an inquiry of a problem.

  • While teaching the lesson, the teacher should also use the textbook where appropriate.

Material / Resources

Writing board, chalk/marker, duster, textbook


  • Begin by reading an example sentence aloud to the students (for example: Say this sentence aloud. (They saw a beautiful mountain at a distance).
  • Ask the students if they remember anything about intonation from the last lesson.
  • If they do, ask them to read the sentence the first time pronouncing each word slowly.
  • Ask them to read the sentence for the second time.
  • Ask students which reading looked more natural and why it seemed more natural.
  • Recap the differences between stressed words and non-stressed words.
  • Ask students which words in a sentence are stressed and which remain unstressed (i.e. principal verbs (walk, talk) are stressed, auxiliary verbs (is, are, was, were) are not stressed words.
  • All the students, one by one, try speaking the following sentence: I can`t come her tomorrow (using the emotion of sorrow by one student and the emotion of anger by other).
  • (The tone and the pitch for speaking both the sentences will be different-high pitch for anger- low pitch for sorrow


Activity 1

  • Discuss with students that, in English, we give stress some words while some words are quickly spoken (some students say eaten!)
  • We quickly speak, or swallow, a number of words in a sentence.
  • Tell the students that we mostly stress nouns, adjectives, action words, etc. which are also called Contents Words.
  • Write the lines on the board and ask students to read them together:
  • “I won`t go to school tomorrow.” Sadie Husain informed Ali.
  • “Why not?”
  • “I am going to attend a marriage ceremony. It will be great fun!”
  • “Okay, see you on Monday; then, enjoy your time!”
  • “Thanks. Allah Hafiz!”

Activity 2

  • There is different intonation patterns used for different types of sentences.
  • The intonation pattern for statement is basically the same.
  • The voice starts at a normal pitch, rises at the intonation focus word, falls back to normal after the intonation focus word, and falls to low at the end of the sentence.
  • Tell the students that statements are sentences that report or give information about something, someone or some event.
  • Ask the students to read in pairs the dialogues written on the board and practice the stress and punctuation patterns for five minutes.

Activity 3

  • Write the poem on the writing boar;

Lesson Planning of ‘Wh’ Forms of Questions

  • Model reading where teacher reads and children listen.
  • When children read the poem ask them to stop on a full stop. (.) and count 123 in their heart.
  • At punctuation mark ask them to say 12 in their heart and then starts again; when comma comes let them say 1 in their heart silently.
  • This exercise provides the students with effective training of pauses required to be taken in the spoken text.
  • It is good for producing effective speech patterns.

Activity 4

  • Students read (in pairs) the poem written on the board and practice the rhythm, stress, and punctuation patterns for five minutes.
  • Chanting: students’ reads/recite and repeat.

Activity 5

  • Arrange a class competition and ask the students to reads the poem in pairs.
  • The best pair must get a stare.
Sum up / Conclusion
  • Ask students about the importance of intonation and rhythm in language.
  • Remind them that stress and intonation can change the meaning, and it also makes our speech interesting and expressive.

Lesson Planning of ‘Wh’ Forms of Questions

  • Assess the students through their responses by checking their punctuation.
  • involve the students in solving the problems given in the exercise at end of unit/chapter.
Follow up 

Ask the students to:

Read the following sentences showing the required expression.

Lesson Planning of ‘Wh’ Forms of Questions

    • I can`t come here tomorrow. (Using the emotion of sorrow/anger in their voice.)
    • It is my birthday today.(Expression of excitement)
    • There is a snake in the bathroom.(Expression-fear)
    • Practices reading the poem with stress and intonation.

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