i‑Learner Education Centre

Steps to Success » Fluent Speaking

Practising Speaking with Tongue Twisters and Poems

An easy way to become a fluent speaker is to practise speaking often. At the beginning of our Global Speaking Passport lessons, i-Learner students practise their enunciation, tone and pacing with different phrases and tongue twisters. Besides improving reading fluency, practising with different phrases and tongue twisters helps students learn how to convey a message or feeling through their speaking, as well as learn how to speak with more impact. This leads to students becoming better communicators and fluent speakers!


Say these sentences smoothly with a natural pace and tone:

This cactus is green and spiky.

The brighter the lights, the bigger the city.

I like to hike when it’s fine but not when it’s wet.

I feel so well prepared for this test

I left my trolley in the underground car park.


Avoid tripping over your words with these tongue twisters:

Big pig in a wig.

The blue bird bounces brightly.

There’s no light late at night.

We surely shall see the sun shine soon.

I study when it’s sunny with my study buddies.

Give papa a cup of proper coffee in a copper coffee cup.

The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.

Whether the weather is warm, whether the weather is hot, we have to put up with the weather, whether we like it or not.


Project your voice and make the feeling clear in these short phrases:


It is too hot to run today!

On school days, I get up at 6 am.

This island is beautiful. Look at the beaches.

Look at my grade. I got an A!

Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.

I don’t want to do my chores today at all!

Today, I forgot my umbrella, and I got soaked in the rain.


Now try these poems and limericks:


Limerick 1

An ambitious young fellow named Matt

Tried to parachute using his hat.

Folks below looked so small

As he started to fall,

Then got bigger and bigger and SPLAT!


Limerick 2

A circus performer named Brian

Once smiled as he rode on a lion.

They came back from the ride,

But with Brian inside,

And the smile on the face of the lion.




Carl Sandburg


The fog comes

on little cat feet.

It sits looking

over harbor and city

on silent haunches

and then moves on.



The Falling Star

Sara Teasdale


I saw a star slide down the sky,

Blinding the north as it went by,

Too burning and too quick to hold,

Too lovely to be bought or sold,

Good only to make wishes on

And then forever to be gone.



A Jelly-Fish

Marianne Moore


Visible, invisible,

A fluctuating charm,

An amber-colored amethyst

Inhabits it; your arm

Approaches, and

It opens and

It closes;

You have meant

To catch it,

And it shrivels;

You abandon

Your intent—

It opens, and it

Closes and you

Reach for it—

The blue

Surrounding it

Grows cloudy, and

It floats away

From you.



Lewis Caroll


’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves

Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:

All mimsy were the borogoves,

And the mome raths outgrabe.


“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!

The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!

Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun

The frumious Bandersnatch!”


He took his vorpal sword in hand;

Long time the manxome foe he sought—

So rested he by the Tumtum tree

And stood awhile in thought.


And, as in uffish thought he stood,

The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,

Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,

And burbled as it came!


One, two! One, two! And through and through

The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!

He left it dead, and with its head

He went galumphing back.


“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?

Come to my arms, my beamish boy!

O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”

He chortled in his joy.


’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves

Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:

All mimsy were the borogoves,

And the mome raths outgrabe.