(1) Jay is sketching.
(2) Jay’s sketching.
What’s the difference between these two sentences?
Both sentences have the same meaning, but sentence 1 is formal, and sentence 2 is informal. Sentence 1 is for formal speeches and formal writing. Sentence 2 is for informal conversation and informal writing.
The pronunciation for these two sentences is not the same. Listen and notice the difference.
Jay is sketching.
Did you hear the difference?
Jay is sketching sounds like this: Ja iz ske cheen.
Jay’s sketching sounds like this: Jaz ske cheen.
The S in ‘is’ and ‘Jay’s’ is not a Z, but the pronunciation is a Z sound.
Your turn to practice your pronunciation
Try these examples:
1. She goes swimming.
2. He’s a runner.
3. This is a rose.
Record your pronunciation and compare your pronunciation with mine. If your pronunciation is the same or almost the same as mine, congratulations. If your pronunciation is not the same, keep trying.
Ten Tongue Twisters to Try
Tongue twisters are good to practice your pronunciation. There are a number of ways to do them, but we suggest the following:
1) Read them out loud to yourself slowly.
2) Listen to the audio.
3) Pick one tongue twister to try.
4) Read it once slowly.
5) Read it twice slowly without stopping.
6) Read it three times slowly without stopping.
7) Your final challenge is to read it three times at normal speed.
This is difficult. After all, native speakers have trouble with these too. That is why they are called tongue twisters!
If you master the final challenge, just remember that nothing is final with tongue twisters. You can always do them faster or more times!
The ten tongue twisters:
1. Three things to think through.
2. Very big vines bring various bugs.
3. She sits so still, such style.
4. My mother makes marvelous marble milkshakes.
5. Lillian loves lots of relish on her lettuce salad.
6. One book, two books, one friend, two friends, one watch, two watches.
7. Saturday, Sue and Sam saw six zebras at the zoo.
8. The bear puffed and puffed and blew bubbles.
9. The lounge on the right, the lobby on the left.
10. Woolen wheels, wooden windows, wonderful women, white whales.