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English pronunciation pitfalls  

2012-06-25 21:43:14|  分类: Pronunciation |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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  1. Voiced "Th"

    • The "th" sound can be particularly difficult for English language learners to master. It is heard in words such as "they," "that," "these" and "those." Many English language learners will pronounce this sound as if it were the letter "d." "They" therefore becomes "day;" "that" becomes "dat;" "these" becomes "deeze;" and "those" becomes "doze." This particular "th" sound is also heard in the word "clothe." English language learners may make the "th" sound heard in "cloth" instead. To solve this problem, students should put their tongues between their teeth, force air through the passage and use their vocal chords to produce the correct sound.

    Short "I"

    • Another common pronunciation problem for English language learners is the short "i" sound, heard in the words "sit," "bit" and "hit." This sound often ends up sounding like a long "e" vowel as heard in "seat," "beet," "meet" and "feet." Students should relax their mouths and keep the sound short when they make the short "i" sound.

    "W"

    • The "w" sound in English can also be difficult for English language learners to master. Sometimes, the "w" comes out sounding like the letter "v." Instead of "west," students will say "vest," or "vipe" instead of "wipe." Some English language learners do not have as difficult a time with this sound as others. Spanish speakers actually have a difficult time producing the sound "v." To correct the "w" pronunciation problem, students should begin the sound with their mouths in a tight "o" shape. Then, they should unround their lips, and let the sound roll out smoothly.

    "Note" vs. "Not"

    • The silent "e" on the ends of words that change the vowel sounds in them can also be confusing for English language learners. In particular, the long "o" sound you hear in the word "note" or "dote" might be pronounced as "not" or "dot," respectively, by an English language learner. Students should concentrate on keeping their tongues in the middle of their mouths and then round their lips tightly as they make the sound.


Numbers

The proper pronunciation of numbers in English causes trouble to lots of people. Make sure you know how to pronounce the following properly:

  • 12.4 (twelve point four)
  • 2/3 (two thirds), 4/5 (four fifths), 7/12 (seven over twelve)
  • 22 (two squared), 43 (four cubed), 59 (five to the power of nine)
  • 67% (sixty-seven per cent)
  • 6 m x 10 m (six metres by ten metres)
  • My phone number is 70455. (seven o four double five)
  • The city was founded in 1021. (ten twenty one)
    Shakespeare wrote Hamlet around 1600. (sixteen hundred)
    The company was established in 1901. (nineteen o one)
    Jack first visited Russia in 1993.
    (nineteen ninety-three)
    Poland joined the EU in 2004. (two thousand and four)
  • My father was born during the World War II. (/we:ld wo: 'tu:/, not world war the second)


Words commonly mispronounced

These words cause trouble to many learners. Make sure you know how to pronounce them properly!

  • apostrophe = /..'postr..fi/
  • comb = /k..um/
  • comfortable = /'k^mft..b..l/
  • hiccough = /'hik^p/
  • knowledge = /'nolidZ/
  • mountain = /'mauntIn/
  • muscle = /'m^s..l/
  • pseudonym = /'sju:d..nim/
  • psychology = /sai'kol..dZi/, psychiatry = /sai'kai..tri/
  • receipt = /ri'si:t/
  • subtle = /'s^tl/
  • whistle = /'wis..l/


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