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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: 9 English words that are hard to say in British and American English

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Were back with some more words that are difficult to pronounce in British English.

And in American English. Are you ready to try them?

Im Vicki and Im British. And Im Jay and Im American.

And all the people youll meet in this video come from lots of other countries.

English is their second, or third or even fourth language and were going to ask them

to pronounce some tricky words. So lets get started!

Jostle. Jostle.

Jostle. Jos - jostle - so difficult!

There are two things to remember here. The word starts with 'j' – jostle.

So its a /d/ and 'zh' sound together- 'j', 'j'.

And the letter t is silent. We write it but we dont pronounce it.

Jostle. Jostle.

So what does jostle mean? If you push roughly against someone in a crowd,

you jostle them. You push or knock them.

When I get on the train in rush hour I get jostled.

Say it with our learners Jostle.

Jostle. Jostle.

Jostle. OK, next word.

Temperature. Temperature

Temperature. Temperature.

Ah nearly. How many syllables does it have?

Temperature. Temperature

Temperature. Temperature.

Temperature So it has three syllables. Temp-p(e)ra-ture

Temperature Temperature.

And temperature is the measurement in degrees of how hot or cold something is. For example,

the temperature is about 80 degrees today. He means its about 27 Celcius. In the US

they still use Fahrenheit to measure temperature. Yeah, Im always really hot!

Say it with our learners. Temperature.

Temperature. Temperature.

Temperature. Er, temperature.

What's next? OK, the next word is complicated.

Mayor. Mayor.

Mayor. Thats nearly right but it has a different

vowel sound. Mayor.

Mayor. Mayor.

That's better. We pronounce this word in different ways in the US. Some people say may-or with

two syllables. And I say mayor, with one. What is a mayor?

Its a public officialthe head of a city or town.

Like the Mayor of London. May-or or mayor

Mayor. You dont pronounce the r sound at the end.

Yeah. Unless the next word starts with a vowel, theres no R sound for me. Mare. Say it

with our learners. Erm, Mayor.

Mayor. Mayor.

Mayor. Mayor.

Mayor. OK, next one.

Manoeurvre. That one is French! Manoeurvre. It's a French word so...

Manoeurvre. French. Whatever. They're right, of course. It's a French word

we use in English but we say it differently. We met one French learner who knew the pronunciation

would be different and he had a guess at how we might say it in English.

Manovee? Manovee? Great guess but he's completely wrong!

Maneuver. Manoeuvre.

You know, I think its easier to say this word if youre NOT French.

Manoeurvre. Manoeurvre.

They were good. What does maneuver mean?

Its a skillful or careful movement that we make.

For example, Im very good at maneuvering our car into tight parking spots.

Thats true! He is! Say it with us.

Maneuver. Manoeuvre.

What's next? Despicable.

Despicable. Theyre almost right.

They just need to change the vowel sound in the middle. Despicable.

Despicable. What does it mean?

Something thats really bad and not moral is despicable.

A despicable crime. A despicable person.

Say the word with us. Despicable.

Despicable. The next word's hard. The spelling is misleading

again. Have a guess.

Er, pneumonia. Pneumonia. Although I don't know what's that.

Pneum.. pneumonia. Pneumon.. pneumonia.

Pnu..Pnue... Uh! Pneumonia. Oh no, they're all wrong.

It's hard because the spelling is so different from the pronunciation.

The letter p should be silent. Ah! Pneumonia.

Pneumonia. Pneumonia.

They got it! What is pneumonia?

Its a serious illness that affects your lungs.

It makes it difficult to breathe. You know we say this word a little differently.

Really? Yeah.

Pneumonia. Pneumonia.

I say njutheres a little y sound. Pneumonia.

And I say nuu. Pneumonia. Say it with our learners.

Pneumonia. Pneumonia.

Pneumonia. Cool! Next word.

Pathetic. Pathetic. Pathetic.

Pathetic. Pathetic.

The tricky thing here is the 'th' sound. Yes, its not a /t/ sound. Its 'th'.

Pathetic. Pathetic.

How far should your tongue stick out to make a th sound?

Thats a good question. You dont want it going out too farthats silly - and

you dont want it back too far either or youll make a /t/ sound.

This is a good measure. Just touch your finger lightly with your tongue.

My tongue is down in the middle and I can feel its sides between the sides of my teeth.

And Im blowing air out. 'th', 'th'. That does it! Say the word with our learners.

Pathetic. Pathetic.

Pathetic. Pathetic.

Pathetic. Pathetic.

OK, next word. Our learners were pretty good at this one.

Tsunami. Tsunami.

Tsunami. So is it 'tsunaaami' or 'tsunahhhmi'?

Tsunami. Tsunami.

It's 'tsunahhhmi'. An 'ah' sound.

What's a tsunami? It's a huge wave in the sea caused by an earthquake.

It's a Japanese word and it starts with a Japanese sound - tsu.

So a t sound quickly followed by s. tsu. tsu. Then 'nah' then 'me'. Say it with us.

Tsunami. Tsunami.

Let's have a really hard one now. OK.

Wow! Ubiquitous. Ubiqui - ubiquitous.

Ubiquitous. Ubiquitous.

Ubiquitous. Ubiquitous.

No! Its very hard!

Ubiquitous. Ubiquitous.

Ubiquitous. They came very close!

Yeah. What does ubiquitous mean?

If something seems to be everywhere, we say its ubiquitous.

For example, in Philadelphia there are lots of stores where you can buy donuts.

Yeah, DunkinDonuts are ubiquitous. And places where you can buy cheesesteaks

are very common. Yeah, theyre ubiquitous too. Cheesesteaks

are a Philly dish. Ubiquitous.

Ubiquitous. So it starts with a /j/ sound.

And it has four syllables. U-bi-quit-ous. Whats that trick for saying long words?

Backchaining. With a long word it often helps to start at

the back and work forward. Try it with me. -tous.

-quittous. -BI-quit-ous.

u-BI-quit-ous. So thats it.

But weve made lots of other videos about words that are hard to pronounce.

Ill put a link to the playlist at the end of this video.

We want to say a big thank you to all the learners who helped us teach these words.

They were terrific and it was lovely to meet them all.

If youve enjoyed this video please give it a thumbs up and share it with a friend.

And dont forget to subscribe and click that notification bell!

Bye-bye. Bye!

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