The 5 words you’re (probably) pronouncing wrong

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My customer services team (i.e. me and myself) has received many complaints lately claiming one word per video is not enough.

Now, I love constructive criticism, this is why I immediately rushed straight to my new studio and made a video tutorial about FIVE of the most abused words in English. Pronunciation-wise, that is. And yes, ‘squirrel’ is one of them.

After this one, I’m pretty sure no one will ever complain again about one word videos.

Watch the 5 words you’re (probably) pronouncing wrong:

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Hey guys, it’s Hadar and this is the
Accent’s Way speaking to you from my very
new work studio – AccentSpace! And if you
want to find out more

follow me on Instagram @accentswaybyhadar.

Now, let’s quit all the chitter
chatter and talk about the thing that
you all came here for which is the five
words you’re probably pronouncing wrong.
Five words. Let’s get started.

Choir.

Choir. If I were to read it
phonetically I would probably say
something like “shaw-yer” but English is not
a phonetic language, thank God, which
means that the CH stands for a ‘k’ sound.
Untraditional spelling pattern, but it
happens, ‘k’. And then the “O-I” actually
represents ‘Y’. Why? I don’t know that’s
just how it is: ‘kwai’ ‘kwai’. As in “quiet” – ‘kwai’.
The ending is a ‘ye’ sound as in “yes”, a
schwa “uh”, and an ‘R’ – ‘yur’ ‘yur’. Choir.
The next word is ‘croissant’. Oh, no. Wait. Sorry, that was French. Hadar, I told you not
French! English! Okay.

The next word is “croissant”.

“Croissant”. So yes,
I know that for you French speaker is
this word may sound like we just
butchered it! And yes, that’s what happens
when you take a word from French and you
turn it into English. You have to turn
the French sounds into American sounds.
So the French ‘R’ turns into ‘er’ and then
the ‘T’ that is not existent in French
will be pronounced in American English.
So, you start with a ‘k’ sound, and ‘r’ – ‘kr’. Round
your lips a little bit. And then a
schwa: ‘kruh’ ‘kruh’ ‘kruh’.

The second
syllable is an ‘S’ sound, the ‘ah’ as in
“father” – ‘saw’ ‘saw’. As in “I saw you last
night.” ‘Saw’. And then you end it with an ‘N’ and a ‘T’ – ‘sahnt’ ‘sahnt’. “Croissant” Croissant – the
first syllable is really short and the
second syllable is long. Croissant.
Some people may pronounce the first
syllable with a ‘W’ instead of an ‘R’ and
another ‘ah’ sound ‘qua’. Croissant. Croissant. I think it sounds more like French.
Croissant. So you have ‘kruh-sahnt’ or ‘kwa-sant’. Both
are okay. You can use both. Now go get
yourself a piece of croissant.

Squirrel.

Squirrel. One of the most
difficult words in English and that’s
because you have three consonants
together – an ‘R’ and an ‘L’. It’s like almost
impossible. And everything within the
same syllable. Squirrel. But if you break
it down it might get easier. So let’s
begin with the middle of the word – ‘wer’
‘wer’. Now practice just that. It’s just like
the word “were” as in “we were”, or the
beginning of the word “work”. “W” – ‘wuh’.
The tongue is down. The lips are
rounded.

And then you bring the tongue up
immediately with no break in the middle,
‘wer’, for the ‘R’ – ‘wer’ ‘wer’. Now practice
that for a little bit: ‘wer’ ‘wer’ ‘wer’ ‘wer’
‘wer’ ‘wer’ ‘wer’. Okay. So let’s put this on the
shelf and then start with the beginning
which is three consonants in a row. An ‘S’ which is produced in the front part
of the mouth and then a ‘k’ sound in the
back, ‘sk’, and then a ‘W’ sound. ‘Skwuh’. Which is
the beginning of ‘wer’.

‘Skwuh’. ‘Skwuh’. Now
practice just that, ‘skwuh’. So now I’m
adding the word that we just practiced a
second ago, ‘skwer’. That’s the beginning
of the word – ‘skwer’ ‘skwer’. The second
part is an ‘R’ sound and a dark ‘L’ – ‘rul’
‘rul’. So you round your lips for the ‘R’ and we
can connect it to the previous ‘R’ – ‘skwer-rul’. For the ‘L’ you bring the tongue up,
but you’re also engaging the muscles of
the back of the tongue here,
to create that dark deep sound of the
dark L – ‘rul’. Imagine like you have
an ‘aw’ sound between the ‘R’ and the ‘L’ – ‘rul’ ‘rul’.
And then put it all together: squirrel.
Squirrel.

Iron.

Iron. Although the ‘R’ here is before the vowel
that is not “eye-ron” but “eye-urn” as if “I earned
it”. ‘I’ as in “my”. And then you have a little
‘ye’ sound and then ‘er’ ‘er’, as an “urn”,
“earth” and “early”. ‘Eye-yurn’ – Iron. Iron.
Now, it’s the same pronunciation for “iron”,
“Iron man”, “Iron Maiden” and “iron throne”,
but also for “I ironed my clothes yesterday.” Now that’s a lie because I never ironed
my clothes. Iron.

Lincoln

The final word for today
is “Lincoln” as in “Abraham Lincoln” or
“Lincoln Center”.

It is not ‘lin-koln’ or ‘lin-koh-len’.
Alright there is no ‘L’ and not because
it’s the dark ‘L’ you barely hear it.
Just because there is no ‘L’. No ‘L’
whatsoever at the end
“Lincoln”.

You start with an ‘L’ – ‘lin’ – with
a relaxed ‘ih’ sound and then it’s a ‘k’
sound, a schwa and an ‘N’ – ‘ken’. Lincoln.
That’s it this was the five words you’re
probably pronouncing wrong.

Was I right?
Let me know in the comments below.
Were you pronouncing them wrong? Now if
you like this one, you may like the “50
most commonly mispronounced words”
practice sheet I have on my website. So
you can just click on the link below and
get it. It’s really cute. It’s interactive.
You click on the word and then you hear
my voice. Technology.

Amazing technology.
So go to my website and get it and
please share it with your friends if you
liked it and you feel that you want them
to pronounce these words correctly. Thank
you for watching. Have a great great week
and I will see you next week in the next video

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4 Comments on “The 5 words you’re (probably) pronouncing wrong”

  1. Hadar is a fantastic talented person in the entire world! There are beautiful everything! Hadar! Her children! Her Lessons! Design! Great soul! God bless you and your family Hadar!

  2. Hello Hadar,

    I really thank you so much, cause it helped a lot; I’ve been speaking English for a long time, teaching in Brazil, and always trying to get in touch with pronounciation tips; yours arethe best ones.

    Se you.

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