PEARTREE LIFE: Experiencing Languages

What did the English do with the R?

Last Thursday, in English for Lunch, we carried on working on English pronunciation. So far we have seen how English pronunciation can be quite different from the spelling, and the need for us to always use a phonemic chart when in doubt.
We have practised the sounds we use when faced with 'oughs and aughs', the common dyphthongs we find in the English language and, finally, what happens to /r/ in standard English pronunciation.

While Americans and Canadians normally pronounce their 'r' (as students normally see in Hollywood films), in Standard English pronunciation (and many other countries that have English as a first language) it's very common not to pronounce it when it isn't followed by a vowel sound!

Let's take a look at some examples: 

R /ɑ:/
Player /ˈpleɪə/
Door /dɔː/
Car /kɑ:/
Bird /bɜ:d/
World / wɜ:ld/

However, in a sentence, we may pronounce the 'r' sound in these words if they're followed by vowels.

How would you read the following sentence then (which 'r' sounds are pronounced?):

The player is on the red team. 
/ðə pleɪərɪzən/ 

There are many reasons for us to study English. 
/ðeərɑ: mæni/ 
Romeo and Juliet is a famous theatre play. 

This Thursday, we will start taking a look at some common multi-word verbs in English (but won't forget to keep on working our students' pronunciation). So, don't give up on your English and join us!

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About Peartree Languages

Peartree Languages is a language school located in Cardiff.


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