4. Short and Long vowel sounds
|Unidad 1 – Tema 1 – Podcast número 6|
Easy and difficult vowel sounds in English. As you may recall from former years, English vowel sounds can be long /i:/ (heat, neat, reach) or short /I/ (hit, knit, rich). Look at the chart below, the sounds are divided into long and short. Can you distinguish them correctly? Listen to the speaker and then try it yourself.
| Long vowels
|| Short vowels
According to experts, the English vowel sounds that are hard for Spanish students are:
seek/sick (/iː/ – /ɪ/),
cart/cot (/ɑː /- /ɒ/),
pool/pull (/uː/ – /ʊ/),
part/pat/putt (/ɑː / – /æ/ – /ʌ/).
The reason is because Spanish has five pure vowels and five diphthongs, whereas, English has twelve pure vowels and eight diphthongs.
Now, listen to the speaker. In the following list, what word do you hear?
|Unidad 1 – Tema 1 – Podcast número 7||1. sleep – slip
2. short – shot
3. heart – hat – hut
4. stack – start
5. spool – spill
6. four – full
7. pour – pool
8. sheet – shirt
The answers are:
How did you do? Don’t worry, practise makes perfect! You’ll get better in not time!
Perhaps you would like an explanation as well as the prounciation. Visit the BBC Pronunciation website and follow along with their videos.