• Mother’s Day

    The word “mother” has a “th” sound. The “th” sound is made with the tongue tip between the teeth. The tongue does not stop the air like the “d” sound. Instead, there is a slight flow of air between the tongue and the teeth. Did you remember your mother on Mother’s Day?

  • Hello May!

    American English has “glided” vowel sounds. This means there is a slight “w” or “y” sound at the end. (The glides are the “w” and “y” sounds.) The “ay” sound in American English, as in “May”,  is longer than in some other languages and has a slight “y” sound at the end. To sound like […]

  • Cherry blossoms

    Cherry trees are in bloom during the spring in some parts of the U.S., displaying beautiful blossoms. “Cherry blossom” is a compound noun. Compound nouns are usually stressed on the first base word. A compound noun often means something different than just the individual words put together. For example, a GREENhouse isn’t a green-colored house […]

  • April showers bring May flowers

    The vowel sound in “showers” and “flowers” is “ow”, as in “Ow! I stubbed my toe!” This is the sound in several common words, such as “about” and “how”. Some non-native speakers say this sound a little like “o”. The “ow” sound is like a combination of “ae” as in “cat” and “o” as in […]

  • The Easter Bunny

    Coloring eggs, baskets, and the Easter bunny are all a part of the Easter tradition in the U.S., among other things. In the word “bunny” the last letter “y” in the spelling represents the “ee” sound. Some nonnative speakers, such as Russian speakers, pronounce the final “ee” sound more like a lax “i”. Make sure […]