When you first hear an unfamiliar language, you don’t really hear individual words but rather a flow of sound – connected speech.
As you learn and become more familiar with a language and connected speech, you begin to hear individual words, partly because your teacher may speak more slowly and listening exercises are often slower than natural speech.
As you get better at speaking, to sound more natural, you need to learn how to use connected speech – this means connecting the words the way native speakers do.
This is one of the easiest and most effective ways to ‘neutralise’ an accent as it can help you build the same speech patterns as native speakers.
Here are some tips to help you!
Connected speech Rule #1
If a word ends on a consonant and the next word begins on a vowel, the consonant moves on to the vowel of the 2nd word.
|word ends||sounds like||wor dends|
|green apples||gree nappples|
Connected speech Rule #2
If a word ends on an ‘ee’ sound and is followed by a word beginning with a vowel sound, we put both words together and add the letter ‘y’ in the middle.
|thr ee eggs||sounds like||threeyeggs|
|H e asked||Heeyasked|
Connected speech Rule #3
If a word ends on an ‘oo’ sound and is followed by a word beginning with a vowel sound, we put both words together and add the letter ‘w’ in the middle.
|bl ue eyes||sounds like||bloowise|