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  • Hi. Welcome again to www.engvid.com. I'm Adam. Today's lesson is about pronunciation and

  • phonetics. Now, I said there's going to be a secret on how to improve your pronunciation

  • in English - here's the secret. Are you ready? There is no secret. It takes hard work, it

  • takes practice, it takes perseverance. You have to do things, you have to practice things,

  • you have to use your dictionary. You always have to keep working at it, that's the secret.

  • But I'll give you a little bit of a tip on how to make this a little bit easier for yourself.

  • Okay?

  • What we have here is a list of words, each one looks very similar, but it has a different phonetic sound.

  • Now, "phonetics" means the sound of the syllables in the word. "Syllables"...

  • I'll just write that word here. A "syllable" is the sound part of a word. For example:

  • the word "cat" has one syllable. The word "beautiful", "beau-ti-ful" - three syllables. Okay?

  • So we're going to learn how to look at syllables, how to find the sound for each

  • syllable in a word to know how to pronounce the full word.

  • So we're going to start with these words because, again, these are very common words.

  • These are words that all sound very similar, plus I had a request on www.engvid.com

  • in the comment section on how to pronounce these.

  • Let me say all these words first. "Look", "lock", "luck", "lack", "lake", "like", "lick",

  • "leek", "Luke", "bloke", and "let". Now, "bloke" and "let" are obviously different words,

  • but there's no such word as "loke" and there's no such word as "lek", so I had to improvise.

  • But we have a bunch of other ones. Now, for some of you, a lot of these words sounded

  • exactly the same I'm guessing. Right? They're not. They're very different.

  • So "lock" and "luck" have completely different meanings. They have no relationship to each

  • other except that they share one, two, three; one, two, three similar letters.

  • "Aw", "ah", very similar vowel sound as well.

  • So, what you notice above each of these words is the phonetic symbol.

  • Now, there are different phonetic lists. Everybody has their own list. Find one that you like.

  • I took these symbols from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, that's the American dictionary.

  • If you want to find it online: www.m-w.com. It's a good dictionary

  • and that's where I got these symbols from. Once you start studying phonetics, stick to one list. Okay?

  • If you want to study British English, use a British dictionary; American English, use an American dictionary.

  • Most of the words are going to be the same or similar; some of them will be completely different.

  • So choose your dictionary, stick to it, practice.

  • Now, if you look at these words in the dictionary on Merriam-Webster, you will find the phonetic spelling.

  • The "phonetic spelling" means they spell the word according to its sound. So

  • this "u" with a dot-I hope you can see that dot-"look", "uh". "book", "took", "bull".

  • It doesn't matter what the letters on either side are,

  • the vowel sound is going to be the same with this symbol.

  • With "lock", you have "a" with two dots on top of it. "Lock", "rock", "sock", "font".

  • If you're not sure what a font is, if you have Microsoft Word or whatever typing tool you use,

  • there are different fonts; Times New Roman, Agency, and Calibri,

  • or whatever they're called. These are font, but the sound is "aw".

  • "Luck", "ah", sort of like an upside down, an inverted "e". "Luck", "truck", "duck",

  • "brother".

  • "Lack", just a regular "a", "sack", "pack", "apple".

  • "Lake", "a" with a line across it makes it a bit longer, it's called a diphthong because

  • it's "ae", it's like almost two vowel sounds in one. "Shake", "bake", "trade".

  • "Like", "i" with a long symbol on top of it, "i". It's also a diphthong. "Bike", "spike",

  • "flight". All the same vowel sound.

  • "i", regular "i" with nothing on top. "Lick", "ih", "stick", "pick", "little". Okay?

  • "e", "e" with a long line on top. "Peek", "seek", "freedom".

  • "Luke", "Luke" is a man's name, it's also from the Bible. "u" with two dots, it looks

  • like a bit of a happy face with a little dimple. "Fluke", "hookah". Now, before I continue

  • - what is a "hookah"? How many of you have read Alice in Wonderland? You know when Alice

  • was walking through the forest and she sees this caterpillar, this big worm smoking a hookah?

  • Still not sure? Hold on. What do I have here? A hookah. I'm missing the little

  • smoking part of it, but this is a hookah. It's pronounced: "hoo-kah". Okay. If you ever tried them,

  • they're actually quite tasty, but we won't get into that.

  • "School", "oo". "Bloke", now, I had to find a word that had "ok" in it. "Bloke" is a British slang,

  • it means guy, man - whatever. "That bloke over there is a very well-dressed."

  • I don't know why I used that example. "Spoke", "joke", "lower". "o", also a diphthong.

  • "o",long line.

  • And "let", regular "e", "eh", "jet", "bet", "arrest".

  • Now, why am I showing you these things? Like why am I comparing different words? (A): because

  • once you understand the phonetic symbol of a word, any word that you don't know how to

  • pronounce - just open the dictionary, find the symbol. Remember what other word you do

  • know that has this symbol. All of you know this word "pack", I assume. All of you know

  • the word "jet". You see this word, "arrest", you think: "Okay, not really sure what it

  • is. I'm not sure how to pronounce it.", "Ah" like "uck", "luck". "Arrest", "e", "eh", "arrest".

  • You have one, two syllables. Find each syllable's phonetic symbol, learn how to pronounce it.

  • Another good thing about the Merriam-Webster's site, online site, you can press a button

  • and it'll say the word; you can hear it as well.

  • Now, what do you do with this? So, let's look at these words. Now, remember English is the

  • hardest language to understand in terms of pronunciation because spellings don't mean

  • anything. This "ea" and this "ea" don't sound the same. If you look at the dictionary, you

  • will find out that this word is pronounced: "feather". This "ea" sounds like this "e",

  • "eh", "fea", "feather". This "ea" sounds like "e", "feature" like-where are we?-"leek".

  • "Leek", by the way, is like the thick, long, green onion. It's very delicious as well when

  • you cook it nicely. "Leek", "e", "fea", "feature", "feature".

  • Now, this, you're thinking: "Fasco", "fiasco", no, it's: "fiasco". Again, the "e", "fi-as-co".

  • Three syllables, "fi-as-co". What is a "fiasco"? It's a big mess of a situation. The government tried to implement a new policy

  • and it was a big fiasco; it was a disaster, nobody bought into it. Okay?

  • I'll give you another example. How do you pronounce this word? I'll give you a chance.

  • Separate it into the two syllables. This one sounds like this one. This one sounds like

  • this one. So, "bull-et", "bullet", bullet. Right? Okay.

  • Again, this is just an example.

  • Keep yourself a list. Get yourself a notebook, write down these words. Start making a collection

  • of sounds. These are just some of the sounds in English; there are others. Make yourself

  • a list of sounds. When you learn a new word, put that word into that sound category, and

  • that's how you start building your pronunciation skills. Believe me, at the beginning, it will

  • be very difficult. The more you do it, the easier it will become, the more like a native

  • speaker you will sound. Okay?

  • I do have a little bit of a tricky quiz on www.engvid.com. It's about rhyming. Oh, by

  • the way, all I'm doing here is rhyming; making words sound similar. A good way to practice

  • as well is go to... Just Google "rhyming dictionary" and you can look for words that sound similar.

  • Again, but they're usually one or two syllables so not as useful. Go to www.engvid.com, try

  • the quiz. And, of course, there's a comment section - ask me any questions.

  • And I'll see you again soon.

Hi. Welcome again to www.engvid.com. I'm Adam. Today's lesson is about pronunciation and

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A2 US dictionary phonetic sound bloke symbol pronounce

How to sound like a native speaker: THE SECRET

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    Hhart Budha posted on 2016/04/25
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