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  • In this American English pronunciation video, we're going to talk about how to reduce and

  • link the word 'to' and 'the' together, in a sentence, like this: to the.

  • I've spent quite a bit of time in my videos talking about reduction and linking. And today,

  • I want to take the specific case of linking the words 'to' and 'the', and talk about how

  • to simplify the mouth movement when we're reducing these words, linking them, and making

  • them very, very fast.

  • The first thing I want to point out, is that there doesn't have to be any movement in the

  • lips or the jaw: we can articulate this with just the tongue. To the. So, what are we doing

  • here. The word 'to' will reduce to either the true T-schwa sound, or the flap T-schwa

  • sound. But for both of them, the tongue position will be the same. So the tongue tip is up

  • at the roof of the mouth, tt, tt, tt, with the jaw quite closed and the teeth pretty

  • much together: tt, tt, dd, dd. And I can make that sound just by moving the tongue, the

  • jaw doesn't have to move: tt, dd, tt, dd. Now, to make the TH for the word 'the'. I

  • do not need to bring the tongue all the way through the teeth. I can just bring it down,

  • so it's touching just behind, where the teeth come together. To the. Let's look at this

  • up close and in slow motion.

  • The word T-H-E is pronounced with the EE vowel when the next word begins with a vowel or

  • diphthong. For example, to the other side, to the east. In these cases as well, all the

  • articulation will happen with the tongue.

  • It will probably take a good bit of time and drilling to get this new way of saying 'to

  • the' into your habit. But it is worth doing. Because when we simplify the mouth movement,

  • it means it's going to be easier to say it quickly in speech. And when we reduce and

  • pronounce these unstressed words very quickly like this, it provides a nice contrast for

  • the stressed words, which are much longer, and have a lot more shape. As you drill these

  • two words, put them into sentence fragments, and eventually sentences. To the. To the store.

  • To the restaurant. I'm going to the restaurant. It will really help you to integrate that

  • into your everyday speech.

  • That's it, and thanks so much for using Rachel's English.

In this American English pronunciation video, we're going to talk about how to reduce and

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A2 tongue linking jaw teeth schwa sound sentence

How to Pronounce 'to the' in a Sentence: American English

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    ABbla Chung posted on 2013/09/26
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