Podcast 23: Recognizing and Using the Vowel / ɔ /:
Saturday, February 14th, 2008
Recognizing and Using the Vowel / ɔ /: This podcast teaches you how to recognize the vowel /ɔ/ by its spelling and offers practice exercises for using this vowel in your everyday speech.
In this week’s podcast, we’re going to continue to learn and practice the important vowel /ɔ /.
*I strongly recommend that you listen to podcast #22 before this one if you haven’t already!
The focus of today’s lesson is:
- learning how to recognize /ɔ/ by its spelling
- learning and practicing the most common spelling patterns and the exceptions
Why Learn the Spelling Patterns of the Vowels?
In your native language, the way the word is written is almost always the way it’s pronounced. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case in Engilsh.
There are five vowel letters-a,e,i,o and u, but there are fifteen vowels sounds.
One of the most challenging aspects of English pronunciation is that one vowel can have a few different spellings, so it’s important to learn the most common spelling patterns of a vowel, as well as the exceptions.
Learning these will make your pronunciation much more accurate and will make it easier to determine the pronunciation of a word.
The Vowel /ɔ/is one of the trickiest vowels to recognize because this vowel doesn’t exist in most languages and in addition, it is spelled in a few different ways.
Therefore, anybody who wants to learn to speak English with an accurate accent must:
1) Learn how to pronounce to the vowel and recognize its sound (podcast #22)
2) Memorize the spelling patterns and learn as many words with the pattern as possible.
This is how American children learn this vowel. You can do it too!
Let’s begin by looking at the most common spelings of this sound:
The most common spelling pattern of /ɔ/:
<o>+< consonant or two consonants> :
Exercise: Listen and repeat the following words containing /ɔ / spelled with <0>+<consonant>:
dog … cost … song … long … off … boss
Spelling pattern #2 / ɔ / spelled <al>:
Exercise : Listen and repeat the following words containing /ɔ/ spelled <al>
all … always … call … ball … salt … tall … talk … walk …
Spelling pattern #3 / ɔ / spelled <au>:
Exercise : Listen and repeat the following words containing /ɔ/ spelled <au>
pause …caution … author ….laundry …
Spelling pattern #4 / ɔ / spelled <aw>:
Exercise : Listen and repeat the following words containing /ɔ/ spelled <aw>
law … saw … raw … awkward … dawn … draw … awesome …
Spelling pattern #5 / ɔ / spelled <ought>: (less common)
Exercise : Listen and repeat the following words containing /ɔ/ spelled <ought>
bought … brought … fought … cough …
Important Exceptions: strange spellings of /ɔ/ .
Looking at these words, you would never guess that they were pronounced /ɔ/, so it’s important to memorize them. :
Exercise: Listen and repeat the following words which contain /ɔ/:
water … want … daughter … caught … broad … gone …
One of the best ways to memorize these strange spellings is to use these words in sentences -practice them.
Exercise: Listen and repeat the following phrases which contain words with exceptional spellings of /ɔ/
She’s caught up in politics. (invoved in, following closely)
The economy has gone to the dogs! (in poor condition, deteriorated)
They threw him in the deep water on his first day . (gave him difficult and advanced work)
He’s trying to broaden his horizons. (learn more and experience new things)
Now that you’ve become aware of the various spelling patterns of /ɔ/, I encourage to practice this sound as often as possible.
Look at the spelling patterns discussed in today’s podcast and try to think of more of examples in which the vowel sound /ɔ /is spelled that way.
Looking for more practice and training materials? Try Best Accent Training mp3s!
Any questions, comments or suggestions ?
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Thank you and see you next time!