Crowdsourced English Pronunciation Dictionary
American speakers use the sound / t? /, which is like a quick / d /, in many words spelled with -t- or -tt-. It is used in words after a vowel or / r /, and before an unstressed vowel or syllablic / l /: city / ?s? t? ? /; parting / ? p ?r t? ?? /; little / ? l? t? l /. Sep 25, · Tagged With: Most Common Words If you are working to improve your English pronunciation or comprehension you’ll love this video. I show you everything I know about the key elements of natural American English pronunciation: reductions, linking, stressed/unstressed syllables and .
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Tagged With: Most Common Words. YouTube blocked? Click here to see the video. This is your final lesson in the most common words in English series.
I started this project because I saw another teacher going over how to pronounce the most common words in English on YouTube, and I was surprised by what was being taught. So, I wanted to make you a series where we talked about this, the real pronunciation, the way words are used in whole sentences.
AND is a stressed pronunciation, and. We reduce it: that means we drop or change a sound. And what I found as we went through the words together really surprised me.
We never change or drop a sound. Only 25 out of a hundred. That means if you go by the book pronunciation, the full, stressed pronunciation, you will not sound natural speaking English. In the very first video, we played around with what English would sound like if every word was stressed and fully pronounced.
The sentence was: This is for work. This is for work. It should be: This is for work. This— is for work. What if every word was stressed? All of these words are in our Most common words list. Stressing, fully pronouncing each word sounds like this: I am going to get my first one. I am going to get my first one. Up-down shape of stress. Other than the stress, everything else is perfect English: all the sounds are right, everything is linked together.
It sounds completely unnatural even though placement is right, linking, the sounds. It sounds completely unnatural because of the stress. We have to have unstressed or reduced words for rhythmic contrast. We have to have rhythmic contrast for natural, native English. So in this series, we studied the real pronunciation, not the book pronunciation, not the full pronunciation. But the pronunciations actually used in sentences, in conversation.
We have two kinds of words in English: content words, which are nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs, and function words, which are all the other kinds of words. Content words are generally stressed, and function words are generally unstressed. Some of these words also reduce, meaning, we change or drop a sound.
When we began the list at 1, the most common word in American English, which is THE, it took us until number 28 to find the first word that is a real content word that will not reduce, that will not be contracted, that will not sometimes be unstressed. So that means the 27 words that came before it, the 27 most common words in American English, are either unstressed or reduced at least some of the time. Basically, you can almost not speak a single sentence without using words that are unstressed or reduced.
We use them all the time. The next conclusion is that, as we studied, we found that the words generally reduce one, maybe two ways. So you can learn this. In these videos, we study conversation and find all of the function words that reduce, and how Americans use them to link words together.
Those are great exercises. But when you train with audio, repetitiously, you learn it with your body, you bring it into your habit, and you make it something you can use. I really encourage people to learn with the body, not just the mind when it comes to speaking, because we have to make these habits to improve.
Another thing that surprised me as we studied the most common words together was that there were quite a few content words where we did reduce or change something. Just think about it. Just think, just think. This is really common. We drop the T between two other consonants.
But make sure you have the transcript, preferably printed out. As you listen to a phrase, circle the words that pop out, that have that up-down shape, that are the most stressed. You might have to listen to the same phrase more that once. But as you focus on this, your ear will become more tuned to the stress.
Study the phrases. Most of my students need to practice making unstressed or reduced words more quickly and simply. So as you study native speakers, pay attention to these unstressed words. Pay attention to the reductions. In this series, you have the chance to study the shape of stress, the up-down melody of the voice, and also the contrast with the flat, lower pitch, simply and quickly said unstressed or reduced words.
Make up additional sentences. Practice them out loud. If you felt really comfortable in all of these ords, that could make a real difference in your overall speaking. Earlier in this video I promised you links to a few playlists. Here they are. First, a playlist that goes over all the words that reduce. In those videos, we often study reductions, as well as idioms, interesting vocabulary words, and so on.