Friday, 9 October 2009

The sounds of English

For those of you who are either starting from scratch with phonetics or need to brush up on it, here are three video links with basic instruction as to what the consonant and vowel sounds are in English associated with their IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) symbols, plus one link with easy exercises.

As you probably know, phonetics as such is no longer included as a part of the EOI exams in Galicia. However, it remains an invaluable tool for correct pronunciation. I constantly use phonetic transcription in class to explain those words I consider you may find problematic. Also, when you work on your own at home, any decent dictionary will accompany entries with an IPA transcription of the word you are looking up; that is the only way you can make sure you learn the word correctly. In short, not only does it make you aware of the need for correct pronunciation, but it also helps you develop your listening skills.

My advice is that you should concentrate on two aspects mainly: those sounds which do not exist in Spanish/Galician and those symbols which are totally different from the letters that commonly represent their sounds.

So, without further ado, here are the promised links.

Online exercises:

And, finally, a program you can download for free and use to transcribe into phonetic script any words or sentences:

1 comment:

  1. I´ve just found this program that teachs the English phonetic alphabet. I couldn´t try it yet but if anyone want to do it, please tell us later.