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The pronunciation and phonology of English is comprised of three key ingredients: intonation, stress, and articulation.
Intonation is the variance in pitch and volume over the entire sentence and conveys emotional content and is used in questioning, disagreeing, confirming, or agreeing statements.
Stress is used to convey the main emphasis in the sentence. It is also used in the case of multi-syllabic words. There are general rules to be taught in the use of stress, but encouraging students to feel the natural placement of stress is also important.
Stress and Intonation are both taught using similar methods. Often we use nonsense words to get the students focused on the rhythm or attitude of the sentence. Gestures, diagrams written on the board, and humming or singing also help indicate and familiarize the students with the points of stress and overall flow of the sentence.
Articulation, the formation of clear and distinct sounds in speech, is tauht by making the stuents aware of the placement of the mouth and/or the manner in which each sound is created. The best way to teach this is to overemphasize a word, using your mouth to demonstrate both aspects. We must be sure to leave the students' with the normal pronunciation, however, to ensure we leave the students with the correct way in their minds. The phonetic alphabet, peer dictation, and tongue twisters all help students' identify problem areas more easily.
Teaching pronunciation can be done as a whole lesson, as part of a lesson, or as the teacher sees that it is necessary. However, we, as educators must decide this on a case by case basis, to ensure we use the method that provides the most benefit to the student/s.