Monday, October 31, 2011

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Using Tongue Twisters for Your Pronunciation

Take a look at this tongue twister.

Betty Botter bought some butter,

But,” she said, “this butter’s bitter. 

If I bake this bitter butter

It will make my batter bitter.

But a bit of better butter – 

That would make my batter better.” 

So she bought a bit of butter, 

Better than her bitter butter, 

And she baked it in her batter, 

And the batter was not bitter.

So it was better Betty Botter

Bought a bit of better butter. 

I think tongue twisters are great to help learners of English with their pronunciation. Just like you need to build your muscles to life heavy objects, you need to build the muscles in your mouth to speak a foreign language. Tongue twisters are like taking your mouth to the gym – lots of fun repetition to improve your pronunciation of those difficult sounds.

Here is a video to help you.

I think the Betty Botter tongue twister is great because it practises the most difficult part of English pronunciation – vowel sounds. Here are the similar words and the different pronunciations. Use this interactive phonetic chart to help you. Let me know how it goes.

Big thanks to Inna, who brought this tongue twister to class!

‘Betty’ /’beti:/

‘Botter’ /’bɒtə/

‘bought’ /’bɔ:t/

‘butter’ /’bətə/

‘bitter’ /’bɪtə/

‘batter’ /’bætə/

‘But a’ /’bətə/ (the same pronunciation as ‘butter’ when it is said quickly)

‘bit of’ /’bɪtə/ (the same pronunciation as ‘bitter’ when it is said quickly)

‘better’ /’betə/


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