Episode #8 [ɛ] vs [æ]

30 September 2016

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Hello, and welcome to this week’s Real English video.

I’m Darcy and this week we’ll be talking about the difference between the [ɛ] and [æ] vowels.

These vowels can be difficult to distinguish, especially if one or both of them don’t exist in your native language. Both of these vowels are produced with the mouth open and the tip of the tongue just behind the lower teeth. However, for the [æ] vowel your mouth is open wider than for the [ɛ] vowel.

[æ], [ɛ], [æ], [ɛ], [æ], [ɛ].

Here are a few words that differ only in this vowel. Tan, ten. Gas, guess. Dan, den. Man, men.

And here’s a tongue twister. In this tongue twister the word ‘flash’ has the [æ] vowel and the word ‘message’ has the [ɛ] vowel.

Flash message.

Make sure you practice this for at least one minute everyday and see how good you can get by next week.

Good luck and see you next Friday.