You’ve been studying English for a long time. You already know that no matter how much you learn, it can be difficult to understand native speakers. They speak quickly, drop entire syllables, and stick words together. They don’t speak exactly like the textbooks teach us, and in fact they make a lot of mistakes! In this video, I will explain clearly the “relaxed pronunciation” that native speakers use, and teach you how to listen so that you understand what they are saying. Once you have practiced this and can understand more of what you hear, you can start to speak like this yourself and be more fluent and natural while speaking English.
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Hi. James from engVid. Do you ever notice how you don’t always understand what English people are saying? It’s like the words are kind of together? Well, I’m going to tell you a secret: You’re right. It’s called relaxed sple… Spleech? Speech, or blended speech. See, I put spleech together? And it just makes sense. And I’m going to get to that in a second, and I’m going to give you a visual so you can understand where we’re going.
Notice E is relaxed, he’s not really trying hard. When you’re speaking your natural language you don’t want to try hard all the time. Right? So I actually use another one: “wanna”, which I’m not going to talk about today. But we’re going to get there. Right? We’re going to get to the board and take a look at what I want to teach you. It’s how to sound like a native speaker, but also how to understand a native speaker. Okay? Because we do this blending or relaxed speech quite regularly. All right? So it’s actually almost more normal… A more normal part of our language.
So what is relaxed speech? Well, relaxed speech happens when a native speaker… Speakers-sorry-change sounds or drop letters or syllables when they are speaking fast for things they say a lot. I’ll give you an example. Nobody wants to say: “Do you want to go to the movie tonight?” So we say: “Do you wanna go to the movie?” For you, you’re like: “What happened?” Well, we dropped the “t”-okay?-and we combined “want” and “to”. We even change the “o” to an “a” to make it easier, so: “You wanna go?” For you, you’re thinking: “Youwannago”, that’s a new English word: “youwannago”. And it’s like: No, it’s not. It’s “wanna” as in “want to go”.
Another one is: “See ya”. In “see ya” we change and we drop the ending here, we put: “See”, and “you” becomes “ya”: “See ya later”. No one says: “See you later.” It sounds weird when I even say it to myself. “See you later. Bye.” But: “See ya later” rolls off the mouth. It’s because both of these things we say at least 10, 20, 30 times a day, so we change it, we make it relaxed to make it comfortable like E. Okay? Problem for you is you go to school or you’re reading a book and it says: “Do you want to”, “Did you ever”, no one speaks like that but you, so today we’re going to change that. Okay? So I’m going to teach you, as I said, how to understand it when it’s said to you, but also how to get it out.
Warning: Please use the books first or, you know, listen to… We have other videos on pronunciation, use those first. You have to master the base sounds first. You have to be able to say: “Do you want to”, because what you don’t understand is when I say: “Do you want”, when I change it to: “Do you wanna”, I almost say that “t”, so I have to have practice saying the proper sound before I can drop it. Got it? It’s like you got to practice a lot before you can play well. Okay.
So, once you’ve got that down and you start using this, people will go: “Hey, man, where are you from? Because I hear some accent but I really can’t tell. Do you want to tell me?” And I say… I did it again. “Do you want to tell me?” You’re like: “Woo, no. It’s my secret, engVid.”
Okay, anyway, so today what I want to work on specifically is “do” and “did”. Okay? Because there are a few things we say, and there are what I call sound patterns for the relaxed speech that you can learn to identify what people are saying to you. Okay? So I’m going to come over here and I want you to take a look. “Do” or “Did”, and here’s the relaxed version of it. When we’re done this we’re going to have a little practice session because with pronunciation it’s important you actually practice it, not you take the lesson, you go: “Thanks, James, you taught me and now I know.” You actually have to go through it. So the first one we want to do is this one: “Do you want to”, easy enough. Right? “Do you want to go to dinner? Do you want to have a friend over? Do you want to have pizza?” When we actually say it, what happens is there are two cases here. In the first case: “do” or “d” changes to a “ja”, “ja” sound. And it comes: “Jawanna”, so this is gone, the “d” is gone, we changed it to a “j”. And remember what we talked about with “wanna”? The t’s gone so it becomes: “Jawanna”.