Author Archives: Helen Cunningham

We’re listening to contractions in Spoken English

When you listen to spoken informal English you will hear that we use contractions all the time in informal conversations. You're, we're, they're. Can you recognise these contractions when you hear them? You are, we are, they are.  These are rarely pronounced in this full form and are usually contracted. This often makes them hard to hear in spoken English as when contracted they sound very similar to other English words.

Connected speech and linking R – listening exercise.

In spoken English, we don't have big spaces between the words.  We blend sounds together to move from one word to another quickly.  This allows us to keep to the rhythm of English sentence stress.    This linking of words happens most often when one word ends in a consonant and the next starts with a vowel and we connect these words together. 

Listening exercise -elision of /t/

It's Valentine's Day, you are on the train on your way home from work and the women sitting opposite you is making a phone call. Can you work out what the phone call is about? You can only hear one-side of the phone call and there is background noise of the train as well.

The missing T in spoken English

In this blog post we are going to look at when the T sound is not pronounced in spoken English. This ‘elision’  happens most often with words that end in – t.  The t at the end of a word is often not pronounced when the next word begins with a consonant.

Connected Speech – how to understand spoken English.

It’s Friday night….you have a message on your phone. Listen to my message and write down everything that you can hear. Remember – this is natural conversational speed English. It is fast. I am leaving you a quick message as I travel home from work. The sound quality is not great, everyday life is not usually silent in the background. You will not hear all the words, as I don’t say them all fully. What is important is to work out what the gist of the message is.

Helenslanguagehome - english-language-teacher

Helen Cunningham

Enjoying Language Learning and Teaching on an English Hillside.

Living on a hill and not yet over it 🙂

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