Reducing Words With i

Reducing Words With iReducing the right sounds and words make English more understandable to your listeners.  Reducing a vowel is a little bit like losing weight.  We want our size to be smaller and less noticeable.  When reducing a vowel in a word, we don’t fully pronounce that sound, but instead pronounce a more relaxed, quieter central vowel like “uh”.

What happens when you fully pronounce every vowel in “Silicon”  –  Silleee cone?  Silly Kon?  See  Lee Kon?  Do you understand that word?  I wouldn’t.  Students of English pronunciation need to reduce the weak vowels in words.  English is a stress-timed language.  We stress (louder, longer, higher pitch) the important words or parts of words.  Most everything else is reduced to the schwa sound (uh).

Words spelled with I are the worst!  Often we don’t pronounce I in weak syllables.  Be sure to reduce the i to an “uh”.

accident  =  accədent

amplify = ampləfy

animal = anəməl

Get the free printable handout here and start practicing to improve your English pronunciation today!

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