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Pronouncing Fractions

There comes a time when we all need to pronounce a fraction or two in our lives! We speak of fractions when we are measuring for new kitchen blinds, cooking, ordering a picture frame and even when we are telling time.

Fractions requires multiple higher level pronunciation skills. Who knew, right? For some people, pronouncing consonant sounds at the ends of words is much different than what they are used to.

1. With fractions, we pronounce multiple consonant sounds at the ends of the fraction.  We add the plural /s/ for plural numbers (those are numbers when the top number is greater than one) For example 2/17 is “two seventeenths” /n/ + “th” + /s/.   WHEW!

2. Then, there is the article “a” that is used in place of the number one- for singular fractions beginning with a consonant sound. (hint: almost all of them) For example:  1/2, 1/3, 1/4.  “a half, a third, a fourth”

3. And pronouncing the singular article “an” for the number one that is used for singular fractions beginning with a vowel sound.  (hint: the number EIGHT).  For example:  1/8, 1/18, 1/80   “an eighth”, “an eighteenth” and “an eightieth”

Listen to Pam’s informational podcast and if you would like the complete transcript and a handy guide for pronouncing and spelling fractions  Email Pam  HERE –  and please write “FRACTIONS” in the subject line.

Comments or Questions? You can find the comment section right under the title of this blog. I’d love to hear from you!

Pronouncing WO – Two Ways!

Wow! This week was International Women’s Day.  Let’s celebrate all of the women in our lives and their achievements. Now is the time to raise awareness against bias and make an effort to take action for equality.
In honor of all women in the world, please enjoy this lesson about pronouncing the words ‘woman’ and ‘women’.

Pronouncing the W in English requires the lips to be fully rounded and pushed forward a bit. Many of my students are able to form their lips correctly, but attaching the next vowel sound is the difficult part. In this lesson you will practice W +  (two different) vowels:

  • W + /ʊ​​​​/ the sound in the word “put”​​​ (listen to me on the recording) as in the word WOMAN
  • W + /ɪ/ the sound in the word “it” (listen to me on the recording) as in the word WOMEN.

And finally pay attention to the last syllable in both of the words:

  • woMAN and woMEN are pronounced the same even though they are spelled differently! Pronounce this reduced syllable as if you are saying “MIN”