Hello there! This is the “Sounds American” channel. In this video we’re going to talk about the American vowel sound /eɪ/, as in the word “make.” You can also hear this sound in words like “take,” “day,” “wait” or “eight.” We’ll be using a special phonetic symbol – /eɪ/ – for this sound. Let’s do a quick test. Read this phrase aloud: Every word in this phrase has the /eɪ/ sound. If you’re not quite sure you made this sound correctly, keep watching. OK To pronounce the /eɪ/ vowel, you should focus on the correct position of your lips and tongue. Partially open your mouth, spread your lips wide and make them tense. Raise the middle of your tongue to the roof of your mouth and push it to the front. The tip of your tongue should be down, just behind your bottom front teeth. Remember, the /eɪ/ is a tense sound, so your lips and your tongue should be very tense. Your jaw should be partially lowered. Now, let’s pronounce this sound: /eɪ/ /eɪ/ /eɪ/ Now, let’s practice this sound in some words. You’ll see a word on a screen and hear
its pronunciation. Like this: You’ll have a few seconds to pronounce the
word, if you want to. [sound prompt to start speaking] Let’s begin! You’re done! Congratulations! The /eɪ/ is one of the major vowel sounds of American English, and it’s also the pronunciation of the first letter of the English alphabet. So, when you hear the /eɪ/ sound, you can assume that it should be spelled with the letter “a.” And you will be right, but only 73% of the time. The remaining 27% is divided by the following combination of letters: such as “ai,” as in “wait,” “ay,” as in “day,” “ei,” as in “eight” or “ea,” as in “break.” We can’t see a pattern either. 🙂 Thanks for watching! Hope you find it useful. Stay tuned on our Sounds American channel!