Advanced British Pronunciation - Speak like a native in 5 sounds
This week, we're doing the five most difficult sounds to get perfect British pronunciation.
All you'll need for this lesson is something which can record your voice,
So, go get those things, and I'll be here waiting when you come back.
So, first, I want you to get something which can record your voice,
and record yourself saying all of these words :
Pause the video, record yourself saying these words,
press play again once you're finished.
Ok, let's look at the first sound!
To practice this, look at this photo :
Was it something like "Awwwwww"?
Well, /ɑ:/ is the first sound we're going to practice.
And in phonetics, it's represented by this symbol.
When you're looking through a dictionnary, and you see those funny symbols, that's what these are.
Now, put a /t/ sound at the end of it,
/ɑ:/ + /t/
together : /ɑ:t/
Repeat with me so you can compare pronunciations.
/ɑ:t/ : which word did you just say?
Now, in American English, it's rhotic, which means they pronounce the "r".
British English is non-rhotic.
So, for example, Americans would say :
British English, we'd say it :
What's the difference inside the mouth?
the tongue is rigid and it moves.
British English, it doesn't, it stays flat and down.
put it at the back of your tongue,
imagine it's very heavy and it weighs the back of your tongue down.
This will keep the tongue flat and down,
while you're pronouncing these words.
then, you're pronouncing it wrong.
Make sure your tongue doesn't move, that's what this is for.
If you have problems saying Art /ɑ:t/ and not /ɑrt/,
pronouncing the "r",
If your tongue is down and flat, you'll pronounce it perfectly,
Put a /h/ sound at the beginning,
/ɑ:/, then /t/ sound at the end.
All together : /hɑ:t/
Again, if you're having difficulty, sweet, tongue...
It just helps train your tongue to be in the correct position to pronounce these sounds.
Let's put a /k/ at the beginning :
/k/ + /ɑ:/
All together : /kɑ:/
Again, that tongue, it's just flat, it doesn't move, that's the only difference.
It also helps to imagine that the back of the throat is a bit more open.
British English, you could see it as more lazy,
/ɑ:/, it's just an open back of the throat.
/d/ + /ɑ:/ + /k/
/h/ + /ɑ:/ + /d/ :
the /ɑ:/ sound, represented by this symbol :
Now, we're doing this symbol : /ɔ:/
So, we go from /ɑː/ when the mouth is open, /ɑ:/
the only thing that's going to change is the lips,
You can see the shape, do the same, try to copy me.
/m/ + /ɔ:/
How about /w/ + /ɔ:/?
/f/ + /ɔ:/ = /fɔ:/
Put /h/, /ɔ:/, then a /s/ sound at the end
Again, if you're having problems with this,
take the sweet, back of the tongue,
keep the tongue down : "horse".
the tongue will be in the same position.
Check the recording you did at the beginning of this lesson,
Does that sound the same as this?
You probably sounded like /hɔrs/
How would Americans say "horse"?
But, British English, again : /hɔ:s/
What's the difference? Well, the tongue is down, it doesn't move and the back of the mouth is more open.
So, it's just following the same technique of...
but your tongue is down and it doesn't move.
The same sound appears in words like :
For this sound, you'll need to make a smile face,
and keep the mouth in a relatively flat position,
the tongue, again, flat, down, doesn't move.
Put a /b/, /ɪə/ : which drink makes you smile?
Put /b/, /ɪə/, /d/ :
Put /h/, /ɪə/ :
How about /d/ + /ɪə/?
Again, it might be easier for you to produce the sound by making a smile face and keeping the mouth flat.
From this sound /ɪə/, open your mouth a bit wider,
You just made the sound which is represented by this symbol, in phonetics.
So, again, when you're looking through a dictionnary, and you see those funny symbols, that's what these are.
/k/ + /eə/ =
/ʃ/ + /eə/ = share
/f/ + /eə/ = fair
This sound also comes up in "there", "they're", "their",
And finally, get your mouth to go from this one, /eə/
Again, inside the mouth, nothing's really changing,
only the lips and the jaw is changing.
Remember, the back of your mouth stays open and relaxed, the tongue stays down.
This one tends to be the most difficult for people, so, again, you might need a sweet,
put in at the back of your tongue, keep that tongue down, don't let it move.
So, let's try with some words :
Let's put a /w/ sound at the beginning and /ɜ:/,
Let's make it more interesting :
/w/ +/ɜ:/ + /k/ at the end :
Remember this sound, this was the /ɔ:/ sound,
Put /w/, /ɔ:/, /k/
Remember this sound /ɪə/, we had /b/ + /ɪə/ + /d/ :
/g/ + /ɜ:/ + /l/ :
/w/ + /ɜ:/ + /ld/ :
This one's a very difficult one for everyone to say,
no doubt you'll probably say "worlllld"
Say it with me a few times : it will take practice.
/w/ + /ɜ:/ + /m/ :
"Worm" : that's the little that thing.
Now, I want you to look at these words again,
record yourself again saying the same words,
and compare your first recording with this recording.
Have oyou improved? Do you sound like a real British person now?
Ok, let's do a test, to see how well you learnt.
And finally, for the big test,
there is an amazing song by Red Hot Chili Peppers, called "Thirty Dirty Birds",
try to say them in a British accent.
In the song, obviously, he's American, so he'll sing it in American accent,
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