Why we have to learn to English phonetic alphabet? Just like when learning Vietnamese you have to learn spelling, when learning English you have to learn how to read English words from its phonetics. After learning the English pronunciation, you will find reading English words is no longer difficult.
How to learn English phonetic alphabet?
- Phonetic category
English pronunciation includes consonants and vowels including 24 consonants, 12 single vowels and 8 dipthongs.
International IPA transcript
a / Consonant
Consonants in the English transcription are usually transcribed like its letter, eg h / h /, p / p / and also read in the same way as it is written, only a few special consonants is pronounced differently because its pronunciation in English is different from its in Vietnamese, such as / θ / or / ð /, sh / ∫ /, etc.
b / Vowel
– Single vowel: Single vowel is also divided into two types: long and short. In the IPA, the vowels with a colon, for example “i:” are said to be long vowel which are pronounced longer, heavier and more stressed than short ones .
For example, the / i / sound is read as Vietnamese, while the / i: / sound is longer, heavier, and emphasized.
– Diphthongs: Diphthongs are the combination of two single vowels and are divided into three groups:
- The group ending with ə: / iə / as in here, / eə / as in hair, / uə / as in tour.
- The group ending with i: / ai / as in hi, / ei / as in say, / in / as in toy.
- The group ending with ʊ: / əʊ / in cold, / aʊ / in how.
Although diphthongs are combination of two single vowels, they are not pronounced by reading two distinct sounds. In the diphthongs, the first sound is the main sound and the second sound is the closing sound. That is, after the sound of the first sound is complete, you close your mouth as the shape of the second sound, not pronounce the second sound.
For example, the / iə / sound consists of two single vowels / i / and / ə /, while reading / i / and closes the mouth of the / ə / sound and does not emit / ə /.
Global Learn sends you Pronunciation in Use – Elementary
Once you know how to read the phonic, you can look at the transcription of English words in the dictionary and read the words correctly instead of having to ask your teacher or google translator.