25 Jul

Vowel Sounds: A

Listen to the pronunciation of the letter 'A' clicking on the symbols and words.

28 Mar

Watch or a Dress


What was the question that person B) heard?

  • Answer Here
Watch or a dress? (This sounds almost identical to ‘What’s your address?’. The “t’s your” becomes ‘chor’ and the ‘a’ in ‘address’ is weak, like the article ‘a’.

16 Mar

I Love White

Thursday 16th March


Person ‘A’ has a high level of English, but has never been to Britian. She meets person ‘B’ who’s British and on holiday in Spain. She’s very surprised at how ‘B’ responds to her questions, because she knows her accent is good and her questions are correctly formed. The responses to her questions make her think person ‘A’ must be a bit crazy!!

So, what’s the problem?
Click below for the explanation.

The confusion here is due to place names with very similar sounds to other words.

Isle of Wight is an island off the south coast of England. (The ‘s’ is silent, so it sounds like -I’ll-, the contracion of ‘I will’. And ‘Wight’ is pronounced the same as ‘white’.) ‘Isle of Wight’ sounds the same as ‘I love white’.

Notice how the ‘o’ in ‘of’ is weak, so it sounds like the ‘o’ in ‘love’.

The capital of Isle of Wight is Cowes which, you’ve guessed it, sounds the same as ‘cows’.

More fun with English sounds here: Pronunciation Centre

14 Mar

The Way We Speak

Tuesday 14th March

What a strange language English is!!


Do you want an apple?

In spoken English, ‘Do you’ contracts to ‘d’you’, which sounds the same as ‘Jew’. The ‘t’ in ‘want’ is silent, so we have ‘d’you wan’ which is (almost) idententical to ‘Jew on’.

Check out my pronunciation charts with audio here: Pronunciation Centre: Sounds of English