It’s Spanish, not ehSpanish! Pronunciation drills for words that begin with the letter ‘S’

Welcome back everyone! Today we are going to work pronunciation. So I’ve noticed here in Colombia that words that begin with the letter ‘S’ are often difficult for Spanish-speakers to correctly pronounce. Because there is no vowel preceding the ‘S’, I find that Spanish-speakers often add an ‘E’ to the beginning of the word.

Examples:

I study Spanish is incorrectly pronounced as “I estudy eSpanish.”

Their school is nice is incorrectly pronounced as “Their eschool is nice.”

Friends, I’m sorry but this will not do! Adding that pesky ‘e’ to the beginning of “s-words” really interrupts the rhythm and flow of English. Do you have t
unciation guide on the right:his problem? Well don’t worry because today we are going to do an activity that will help you improve. Practice saying the sentences in the left hand column using the pron

Sentence

Correct Pronunciation

I study math Ice  tudy math
The television show is in Spanish The television show is ince  Panish
Their school is good Theirss  cool is good
He has excellent speech He has excellence   peech
My specialty is cooking Mice   pecialty is cooking
Her spelling is bad Herss   pelling is bad

*Did you notice how in English we remove the ‘S’ from the beginning of the “S-word” and add it to the end of the word that precedes it? Try to practice this when you are speaking and learn how to make the smooth transition between the two words. Keep in mind that in American English an “S-word” and the word that comes before it are pronounced as one word with many syllables; we do not pause between the two.

Create some of your own examples and add them as a comment for other readers to learn from! Want to practice your pronunciation with a native English speaker? Contact Bogota Business English today!

Follow Bogota Business English on Facebook for more great ways to practice and improve your English

Examples inspired by Barron’s American Accent Training.

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