June 5, 2020
Did you know that the word ‘language’ comes from ‘lingue’- which means tongue in other languages? In English we often refer to a native speaker as using their ‘mother tongue’. In speaking your tongue, lips and teeth are most important in pronunciation.
For example many people have a problem with ‘th’ as in ‘author’, ‘this’ and ‘that’. They may pronounce them as ‘ausor’, ‘zis’ and ‘zat.’
In England there are hundreds of tongue twisters. They are sentences that practice a specific sound. Pick the tongue twister for the sound you want to practice, find a recording of a native speaker saying it, then practice it till you get it right.
Try this one, for example.
“Six thick thistle sticks”
It is not easy for an English speaker but it marks the difference between the tongue sticking out from between the teeth, for the ‘th’ sound, and the tongue resting behind the teeth, for the ‘s’ sound.
Another common pronunciation mistake is with the ‘r’ as in ‘real’ and ‘ready’. This tongue twister has some words you may not know, don’t worry too much about it, just try saying it.
‘Round the ragged rocks the ragged rascals ran their rural race.’
If you really want to have fun try saying them very fast. Many native English speaker fail to say this one fast, see how you do. Just repeat it lots of times and see what happens.
‘Red leather, yellow leather.’
Now let’s take a look at some English words that have the same pronunciation so we can learn the different spelling and meaning
This is a collaborated content contributed by Francis Charters. Francis works with MalvernTutors which provides live online lessons in English for students from other countries. If you are interested in contacting him, you can reach out to us via email: email@example.com. Thank you
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