English Intonation Patterns - Never Feel Awkward Again!

This is an introductory video to English intonation, where we look at 3 types of intonation in a sentence: falling, rising, and rise-fall.

Intonation is important to convey how you’re feeling and if you have more to say. I think it can be so useful in giving signals to the other person and therefore helping avoid awkward pauses or moments when the other person isn’t sure whether you’ve finished talking or not.

Intonation is the sound or pitch of your voice when talking. It goes up and down like a rollercoaster. It’s also important to keep in mind, there are not exactly any rules with intonation, only patterns that can be observed. With that said, let’s get into it.

Falling Intonation ➘


  • My name is ➘ Michael
  • Nice to meet  ➘ you

WH~ Questions

  • Where do you ➘ live?
  • What are you  ➘ doing?

Question Tags that don’t require a response

  • It’s cold, ➘ isn’t it?
  • We’ve met before,  ➘ haven’t we?

Rising Intonation ➚

Yes/No Questions

  • Do you like ➚ coffee?
  • Are you ➚ cold?

Question Tags that require a response

  • We’ve met before, ➚ haven’t we?
  • You like football, ➚ don’t you?

It also indicates you’re not finished talking yet

  • I went to the park ➚ ……. and then I went home.

Rise-Fall Intonation ➚➘


  • Would you like ➚ coffee or ➘ tea?
  • Shall we go ➚ home or ➘ go out?


  • I’m going to buy ➚ apples, ➚ pears, ➚ oranges, and ➘ milk.
  • I want to play ➚ this game, ➚ that game, and ➘ that game.

Conditional Sentences

  • If he ➚ comes, ➘ I’ll be happy.
  • If you ➚ pay for my taxi, ➘ I’ll pay you back.

Was anything new for you here today?

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