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Learning to pronounce. Lesson 3. Fita course

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Lesson 3 FITA course .docx in pdf (1)

You must watch this video in order to follow and understand this lesson.

This is a long lesson, so I have divided it into three parts:

Part one. What are the problems?

For Spanish speakers pronunciation is one of the hardest parts of learning English.

The problem begins in the early stages of the learning process. Too many young students start learning English the wrong way by only studying grammar and reading, without paying any attention to listening and speaking.

By the time they finish school, they have lost the ability to reproduce the sounds of the English language correctly.

So how can you correct this problem?


By doing the following:

1) Pay attention and practise pronouncing the difficult sounds

If you don’t know what you are doing wrong, how are you going to correct it?

You must pay attention to all the sounds that mess up your pronunciation.

Please, do not think you are not affected by it. I even make these mistakes if I don’t pay close enough attention.

Here is a list of some of the sounds that are difficult for Spanish speakers to pronounce. Try saying them aloud many times.


 Sound  Examples What to do
“s” at the beginning of a word





Do not pronounce an “e” before the “s”. It’s not “eskul”. It’s “sskul”.





If I didn’t mention this sound, you’d be totally unaware of its existence because it doesn’t exist in Spanish. It is the buzz sound made by bees. Something like this: zzzzz

Although it’s not as important as other sounds, if you start making this sound, your English will sound much better.





The sound is not “b”, but rather “v”. To make this sound you must bite your lower lip.





The sound is not “able” as in “table” but something more similar to “abó” where the “l” goes at the end.





The “e” that comes before the “d” is not pronounced. If you omit this sound at the end of word then you’ll get three kinds of sounds: “d” as in Loved→/lovd/; “id” as in Wanted→ /wantid/; and “t” as in

Worked →/wuórkt/





To learn this sound first say: “for us”.

/for as/

then- nervas, verias, sirias, malishas




This is sound is not “y” is like the Spanish “i”. You should say “ies”, “iang”, “iesterdei”, “ion”.




I would say this sound is in between a Spanish “I” and “e”.  Remember that it is NOT the Spanish “I”.




This sound is not the Spanish “J”.  It is instead a very soft sound that you make when you breathe on your glasses and wipe them clean.





Many Spanish speakers pronounce this sound as “ch” because this sound doesn’t exist in Spanish. The most similar sound is “ch”. However, this sound is much long and softer as when you are trying to make someone shut up and you say: “sssshhhh”.

Compare = “chop” Cortar en rebanadas and “shop” tienda.


This sound is not equivalent to the Spanish “gu”. It’s much softer and to do it right you should try to put the lips as if you were going to give someone a kiss.




I call this sound “la a del tonto”.  In English, it’s pronounced like “uh”. It doesn’t exist in Spanish and its phonemic symbol is this“^” . It’s the “a” pronounced with your mouth a bit more open but not as much as when you say the Spanish “a”.






This is the “schwa” sound. Its phonemic symbol is like an inverted ə

Actually, is very similar to the “a del tonto”represented by ^.  In English they say “uh”.


In fact, some dictionaries make no distinction between these two sounds. As it is the most common English sound, we’ll talk more about it later.





As this sound doesn’t exist in Spanish, the Spanish speaker pronounces it like a Spanish “a”. In reality it’s a sound between the “a” and the Spanish “e”.





As in Spanish there are no words that end in “m” except for the name “Miriam” (I think), the “m” at the end of the words is normally pronounced as an “n”.  To pronounce it, try to close your lips at the end of the word.


2) Pay attention and practise connected speech

When we speak, we tend to link one word to the other. This is particularly true with certain structures.

For example, when “it” goes after a verb, we always link the two words together.


  • Do it- sounds something like /dúit/. The sound “du” links to “it”.
  • Get it- sounds something like /gédit/. The sound “get” links to “it”.
  • Read it- sounds something like /rídit/. The sound “rid” links to “it”

Connected speech also occurs when a word ends in a consonant sound and the following word also starts with the same, or a similar, consonant sound. In this case, we pronounce only one consonant trying to lengthen the sound.

  • Good day- /Gudei/
  • Best time- /Bestaim/
  • I got tired- /Ai gataird/

 3) Learn to speak with the right sounds and intonation

 You are never going to improve your accent if you continue to speak English as if it were Spanish.

Apart from trying to correct the mistakes I’ve just mentioned, you should try to completely change your way of speaking.

Normally, when you succeed in doing this, your mouth will hurt.  This pain is an indication that you are using some muscles in your mouth that you never used before; so it’s good news.

Here are some examples of what you can do in order to speak with the right sounds and intonation:

a) Emphasize consonants

In Spanish, every consonant goes with a vowel. In English, this is not always true. There are many words where vowels simply disappear.

Examples.  Words ending en –ed (such as regular verbs)-

–  Loved is not “lovEd”, but “lovd”.

– Worked is not “workEd, but “workt”.

When I say emphasize “consonants”, I mean “try to stress their sound”.

Let’s hear some examples:

  • Dog- DDDogg- “D” and “g” are important. “O” isn’t
  • Because- Bíkoss-notice the final “e” is not pronounced
  • Before- Bífor – notice again that the final “e” is not pronounced.
  • Sit- SSiT- “s” and “t” are very important. The “i” instead is very short.

b) Pay attention to the “schwa” sounds

 I bet most of you have never heard of the “schwa” sound.

The paradox is that the “schwa” sound is the most common sound in the English language.

This sound appears when many vowels are together in an unstressed word or syllable in a phrase.

It is a very relaxed and short sound. The phonemic symbol for “schwa” is ə

It sounds like “ə”.

Link to download

But let’s first try to get some basic concepts clear.

What are stressed words?

When we want to emphasize certain words in a phrase, we stress them. This means that we pronounce these words more carefully saying their sound in a very distinctive way. These stressed words are normally nouns, main verbs, adjectives, or adverbs.

What are unstressed words?

These are words that don’t have too much importance in a phrase so we pronounce them faster and in a more relaxed way. Unstressed words are normally auxiliary verbs, pronouns, articles, linkers and prepositions.

Example of a sentence pronounced trying not to use “schwa”.

  • We–started–our–first—day –on–the–island–by— having–a—delicious–breakfast–in–front–of–the–pool.

As you heard, I tried to pronounce every single syllable stressing the vowels.  As a result the sentence sounded very slow and unnatural.

Let’s hear now the same sentence pronounced with “schwa”.

  • We started our first day on the island by having a delicious breakfast in front of the pool.
  • Phonetic transcription (“schwa” sound in red) wiː ˈstɑːtɪd ˈaʊə fɜːst deɪ ɒn ði ˈaɪlənd baɪ ˈhævɪŋ ə dɪˈlɪʃəs ˈbrɛkfəst ɪn frʌnt ɒv ðə puːl

Link to download.

This is the way people normally speak. As you can hear, the words are said so fast that some “vowels” almost disappear. 

That reduced sound of the vowels is the “schwa”. It’s very clear in the word “for”. We don’t normally say: “for”- We say: “fər”

What should you do with the schwa sound?

Schwa usage varies greatly between dialects. In fact, Australians pronounce schwas in places where British and American speakers won’t.

So my advice is that you just try to be aware of its existence when you listen to English. 

What does this mean in practice?

It means that you should know that when native speakers speak English they very often don’t pronounce the vowels very clearly.

As you become more used to the “schwa” sound, you can start trying to imitate it.

Remember every now and then to look for the phonemic symbol ə in syllables and phrases.

Here you have a link  to a site that will help you check the phonetics of phrases.

And if you want to know more about the “schwa”, I recommend reading this article.

c) Try to speak with a softer tone

Some Spanish accents, especially from Castillia and the north of Spain are very strong. They might occasionally sound like Arabic or Greek with a rolling “r” and strong stress. Especially in these cases, you will need to speak with a much softer tone in order to get the right sounds and intonation in English.

For example: What’s your name? 

Sounds something like: wuáts iór néim?

All the sounds are soft and the “y” of “your” is pronounced like a Spanish “I”.

If I pronounce this question with a strong Spanish accent instead, I’ll say:

-Guats yor neim?

As can you can hear, all the words sound much harder. 

d) Try to give to English the intonation a native English speaker gives to Spanish

This tip sounds like a joke, but I promise it will work if you start doing it.

Let’s see what I mean.

A native English speaker pronounces “Yo soy Pedro,” something like this: ío sóoi pé dro—

The sounds of some consonants are explosive.

If you think about it, you’ll see that to have the right intonation in English you need to do exactly the same; emphasize the consonants, which are in many cases explosive.

When I say “explosive” I mean that you have to release air through the mouth, which is something you never do in Spanish.






Part two. Accents

What accent should you try to imitate?

I always say that you should try to imitate the accent you feel the most comfortable with: British, Irish, American, Australian or any other dialect.

If you have been living in any English speaking country, you’ll have a tendency to imitate the accent of the country you have lived in. That’s perfectly okay.

Take into account that in this course the audiobook “The Picture of Dorian Gray” is read with a British English. But many of the links to recordings that we have included here are in American or Australian accents. There is a mixture of accents that I consider beneficial because if you live in Europe, you’ll have to get used to many different ways of speaking.

If you live in Latin America, you’ll hear American English most of the time. However, it’s not a bad idea to learn the differences between the different accents because you’ll improve your listening skills.

I personally speak with a particular accent, which tends to sound more like American English, but I call it European accent. It’s actually a combination of several accents.

Remember that the important thing is NOT that you speak like a native – which is normally only possible to do if you start learning English at a very young age.

The important thing here is that you reduce your Spanish accent when you speak English.

If your Spanish accent is less strong, you will feel better as native speakers will understand you better.

Another important result of improving your accent will be that people will immediately think that you speak better English than you actually do, and this, in turn, will motivate you to continue learning.

That’s why it is so important for you to improve your accent.

Part three. Improving your pronunciation

Exercises to improve your pronunciation

Remembering all the rules I have mentioned above can be quite challenging.

In fact, most people forget them immediately and continue to speak English with the Spanish sounds.

Is there an easier way to improve your pronunciation?

Yes, of course there is. 

This is the way all the native English speakers used when they started to learn their language: listening and speaking in English the whole day.

But how will we do it?

We will listen and repeat the sentences of our audiobook.

I will now show you how.

We will use chapter one as an example.

The idea is that you try to memorize these sentences by repeating them aloud as many times as necessary.  In this process, you should use the phonetic alphabet and the approximate pronunciation, which I have included in the course material as a tool to help you.

I encourage you to start practising right now.

Chapter one. Audio. The Picture of Dorian Gray (adapted)


Full audiobook


Chapter 1 “The Picture of Dorian Gray”



Approximate Pronunciation

Chapter 1


| ˈtʃæptə wʌn |

Chápter wuán

‘The soul in the picture’

ðə səʊl ɪn ðə ˈpɪktʃə |

Dé sóul ín dé píksher

There is only one thing in the world

ðə z ˈəʊnli wʌn ˈθɪŋ ɪn ðə wɜːld |

Dér íss óunli wuán zíng ín de wuórld

worse than being talked about

wɜːs ðən ˈbiːɪŋ ˈtɔːkt əˈbaʊt |

Wuórs dán bíng tókt ábaut

and that is not being talked about.”

ənd ðət ɪz nɒt ˈbiːɪŋ ˈtɔːkt əˈbaʊt |  

Ánd dát íss nót bíng tókt ábaut

The studio was filled with the intense smell of roses,

ðə ˈstjuːdɪəʊ wəz fɪld wɪð ði ɪnˈtens smel əv ˈrəʊzɪz |

Dé sstúdio wuás fíld wuíz dí íntens ssmél of róussess

and when the gentle summer wind

ənd wen ðə ˈdʒentl̩ ˈsʌmə wɪnd |

Án wuén dé yéntel sámer wínd

moved through the trees in the garden

muːvd θruː ðə triːz ɪn ðə ˈɡɑːdn̩ |

Múvd zrú dé trís ín dé gárden

the strong essence of lilac entered the room

ðə strɒŋ ˈesns əv ˈlaɪlək ˈentəd ðə ruːm |

Dé stróng ésens óf láilak énterd dé rúm

In the corner,

ɪn ðə ˈkɔːnə |

Ín dé kórner

spread out over a divan

 spred aʊt ˈəʊvər ə dɪˈvæn |

Spréd áut óver a divan

and smoking one cigarette after another,

ənd ˈsməʊkɪŋ wʌn ˌsɪɡəˈret ˈɑːftər əˈnʌðə |

Án ssmóuking wuán sigáret áfter ánader

Lord Henry Wotton contemplated the new honey-coloured flowers.

lɔːd ˈhenri woton ˈkɒntəmpleɪtɪd ðə njuː ˈhʌni ˈkʌləd ˈflaʊəz |

Lord hénri wuóton kóntempleitid dé níu háni kólord fláuwerss

In the middle of the room,

ɪn ðə ˈmɪdl̩ əv ðə ruːm |

Ín dé mídel óf dé rúm

on an easel,

ɒn ən ɒn ən ˈiːz(ə)l

Ón án íssel

was the life-size portrait of a young man of extraordinary beauty,

wəz ðə ˈlaɪf saɪz ˈpɔːtrɪt əv ə jʌŋ mæn əv ɪkˈstrɔːdn̩ri ˈbjuːti |

Wuás dé láif sáiss pórtreitt óf á íang mán óf eks’traordinri biúti

and standing in front of it,

ənd ˈstændɪŋ ɪn frʌnt əv ɪt |

Án sstánding ín frónt ófit

a little further away, 

ə ˈlɪtl̩ ˈfɜːðər əˈweɪ |

Á lítel férder owuéi

the painter Basil Hallward was sitting,

ðə ˈpeɪntə ˈbæzl̩ ˈhɒlwərd wəz ˈsɪtɪŋ |

Dé péinter béissl hálwuard wuáss síting

admiring the painting.

ədˈmaɪərɪŋ ðə ˈpeɪntɪŋ |

Ádmairing dé péinting

This is your best work, Basil

| ðɪs ɪz jə best ˈwɜːk | ˈbæzl̩ |

Dís íss iór bést wuórk bássl

It’s the best you’ve done’,

ɪts ðə best juv dʌn

Íts dé bes iúv dón

Lord Henry told the painter. 

lɔːd ˈhenri təʊld ðə ˈpeɪntə |

Lórd hénri tóld dé péinter

Next year you must send it to the Grosvenor Exhibition.


nekst ˈjiə ju məst send ɪt tə ðə ˈɡrovnər ˌeksɪˈbɪʃn̩

Néks íer iú múst séndit tú dé grósvenor éxhibishion

I don’t think so,

| ˈaɪ dəʊnt ˈθɪŋk ˈsəʊ |

Áid dóunt zínk sóu

replied the painter. 

rɪˈplaɪd ðə ˈpeɪntə |

Ríplaid dé péinter

I will never send this anywhere.


ˈaɪ wl̩ ˈnevə send ðɪs ˈeniweə |

Ái wuíl néver sénd dís éniwuer

Lord Henry raised his eyebrows

lɔːd ˈhenri reɪzd ˈaɪbraʊz

Lórd henri réissd hís ráissd áibrauss

and looked with astonishment

ənd lʊkt wɪð əˈstɒnɪʃmənt |

Ánd lúkt wuíz ástonishment

through the blue smoke of the opium cigarette.

θruː ðə bluː sməʊk əv ði ˈəʊpɪəm ˌsɪɡəˈret |

Zrú dé blú ssmóuk of dí ópiem sigáret

And why ever not, my dear friend? 

ənd waɪ ˈevə nɒt | maɪ dɪə ˈfrend |

Ánd wuái éver nót mái dír frénd?

Painters are such strange people.

ˈpeɪntəz ɑː sʌʧ streɪnʤ ˈpiːpl. peinters ar sach streinch pipol

They seek fame

ˈðeɪ siːk feɪm |

Déi sík féim

and then don’t want it.

ənd ðen dəʊnt wɒnt ɪt |

Ánd dén dóun wuántit

It’s absurd. 

ɪts əbˈsɜːd |

Íts ábserd

It’s crazy because there is only one thing in the world

ɪts ˈkreɪzi bɪˈkɒz ðə z ˈəʊnli wʌn ˈθɪŋ ɪn ðə wɜːld |

Íts kréissi bíkoss dér íss ónli wuán zíng ín dé wuórld

worse than being talked about,

wɜːs ðən ˈbiːɪŋ ˈtɔːkt əˈbaʊt |

Wuórs dán bíng tókt ábaut

and that is not being talked about.


| ənd ðət s nɒt ˈbiːɪŋ ˈtɔːkt əˈbaʊt |

Ánd dát íss nót bíng tókt ábaut

I know you’re going to laugh

ˈaɪ nəʊ jə ˈɡəʊɪŋ tə lɑːf  |

Ái nóu íur góing tú láf

replied the painter

rɪˈplaɪd ðə ˈpeɪntə |

Ríplaid dé péinter

but really

bət ˈrɪəli |

Bát ríli

I can’t exhibit the painting

ˈaɪ kɑːnt ɪɡˈzɪbɪt ðə ˈpeɪntɪŋ |

Ái kánt igssíbit dé péinting

there’s too much of myself in it


ðeəz tuː ˈmʌtʃ əv maɪˈself ɪn ɪt |

Dérss tú mách óf mai’self ínit

Lord Henry laughed


lɔːd ˈhenri lɑːft |

Lórd hénri láft

I don’t mind you laughing!

ˈaɪ dəʊnt maɪnd ju ˈlɑːfɪŋ |

Áid dóunt máind iu láfing

said Basil


ˈsed ˈbæzl̩ |

Séd bássl

But it is nothing like you

bət ɪt s ˈnʌθɪŋ ˈlaɪk ju |

Bát ír íss názing láik iu

You are an intelligent man

ju ər ən ɪnˈtelɪdʒənt mæn |

iu ár án intélichent mán

but intelligence has nothing to do with beauty

bət ɪnˈtelɪdʒəns həz ˈnʌθɪŋ tə də wɪð ˈbjuːti |

Bát íntelichens hás názing tú dú wuíz bíuti

I am sure that your mysterious young friend never thinks

ˈaɪ əm ʃʊə ðət jə mɪˈstɪərɪəs jʌŋ ˈfrend ˈnevə ˈθɪŋks |

Ái am shér dát íor místirias íang frénd néver zínks

He is a beautiful, brainless creature

hi z ə ˈbjuːtəfl̩ | ˈbreɪnləs ˈkriːtʃə |

Hí iss á bíutiful bréinles krísher

You are nothing like each other


ju ə ˈnʌθɪŋ ˈlaɪk iːtʃ ˈʌðə |

Iú ár názing láik ích áder

You don’t understand me

ju dəʊnt ˌʌndəˈstænd miː |

Iú doúnt ánderstandmí

replied the painter

rɪˈplaɪd ðə ˈpeɪntə |

Ríplaid dé péinter

I already know that Dorian Gray

ˈaɪ ɔːlˈredi nəʊ ðət ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Ái ólredi nóu dát dórian grey

and I are nothing alike


ənd ˈaɪ ə ˈnʌθɪŋ əˈlaɪk |

Ánd ái ár názing álaik

Dorian Gray?

ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Dórian gréy?

Is that his name?

| ɪz ðət ɪz ˈneɪm |

Íss dát híss néim?

Asked Lord Henry


ˈɑːskt lɔːd ˈhenri |

Áskt lórd hénri

Yes, that’s his name 

jes | ðæts ɪz ˈneɪm |

Íes, dáts híss néim

I didn’t want you to know


ˈaɪ ˈdɪdnt wɒnt ju tə nəʊ |

Ái didn’t wuánt tú nóu

Why not?


waɪ nɒt |

Wuáit nót?

Because when I like someone a lot

bɪˈkɒz wen ˈaɪ ˈlaɪk ˈsʌmwʌn ə lɒt |

Bíkoss wuén ái láin sámwuan álot

I don’t tell their name

ˈaɪ dəʊnt tel ðeə ˈneɪm |

Ái dóunt tél dér néim

For me it’s betrayal

fə miː ɪts bɪˈtreɪəl |

Fór mí íts bétreial

I love secrecy

ˈaɪ lʌv ˈsiːkrəsi |

Ái lóv síkresi

When I leave this city

wen ˈaɪ liːv ðɪs ˈsɪti |

Wuén ái liiv dís síti

I don’t tell anyone where I am going

ˈaɪ dəʊnt tel ˈeniwʌn weər ˈaɪ əm ˈɡəʊɪŋ |

Ái dóunt tél éniwuan wuér ái ám góing

It is a bad habit

ɪt s ə bæd ˈhæbɪt |

Ít íss á bád hábit

 I know

ˈaɪ nəʊ |

Ái nóu

but in that way

bət ɪn ðət ˈweɪ |

Bát ín dát wuéi

life is like a novel

laɪf s ˈlaɪk ə ˈnɒvl̩ |

Láif láik á nóvel

You must think I am mad

ju məst ˈθɪŋk ˈaɪ əm mæd |

Iu mást zínk ái ám mád

No, my dear Basil

nəʊ | maɪ dɪə ˈbæzl̩ |

Nóu, mái dír béissl

said Lord Henry

ˈsed lɔːd ˈhenri |

Séd lórd hénri

Remember that I am married

rɪˈmembə ðət ˈaɪ əm ˈmærɪd |

Rimember dát ái ám méried

and the only delight to be had in a marriage

ənd ði ˈəʊnli dɪˈlaɪt tə bi həd ɪn ə ˈmærɪdʒ |

Ánd dé óunli diláit tú bí had ín á mérich

is that the partners cheat regularly. 

ɪz ðət ðə ˈpɑːtnəz tʃiːt ˈreɡjʊləli |

Íss dát dé pártnerss chít régularli

I never know where my wife is

ˈaɪ ˈnevə nəʊ weə maɪ waɪf ɪz |

Ái néve nóu wuér mái wuáif íss

and my wife never knows what I am doing

ənd maɪ waɪf ˈnevə nəʊz ˈwɒt ˈaɪ əm ˈduːɪŋ |

Ánd mái wuáif néver nóuss wuát ái am dúing

I don’t like you speaking like that

ˈaɪ dəʊnt ˈlaɪk ju ˈspiːkɪŋ ˈlaɪk ðæt |

Ái dóunt láik iú spíking láik dát

replied Basil Hallward

rɪˈplaɪd ˈbæzl̩ ˈhɒlwərd |

Ríplaid bássl hálwuard

as he walked towards the door

əz hi ˈwɔːkt təˈwɔːdz ðə dɔː |

Áss hi wóukt tórdss dé dóor

that led to the garden.

ðət led tə ðə ˈɡɑːdn̩ |

Dát léd tú dé gárden

I believe that you are a good husband. 

ˈaɪ bɪˈliːv ðət ju ər ə ɡʊd ˈhʌzbənd

Ái bíliv dát iú ár a gúd hássband

You are a great person

| ju ər ə ˈɡreɪt ˈpɜːsn̩ |

Iu ár gréit pérson

Your shamelessness is just a front

jə ˈʃeɪmləsnəs ɪz dʒəst ə frʌnt |

Ior shéimlesness íss chás a frónt

The two men walked together towards the garden

ðə tuː men ˈwɔːkt təˈɡeðə təˈwɔːdz ðə ˈɡɑːdn̩ |

Dé tú mén wuokt túgeder tordss dé gárden

and sat on a bench

ənd sæt ɒn ə bentʃ |

Ánd sát ón a bénch

under the shade of the trees

ˈʌndə ðə ʃeɪd əv ðə triːz |

Ánder dé shéid óf dé tríss

Moments later

ˈməʊmənts ˈleɪtə |

Móments léiter

Lord Henry looked at his watch.


lɔːd ˈhenri lʊkt ət ɪz wɒtʃ |

Lórd hénri lukt át híss wuátch

I must go, Basil

ˈaɪ məst ɡəʊ | bæzl̩ |

Ái mást góu béissl

he said quietly

hi ˈsed ˈkwaɪətli |

Hí séd kuáietli

but before I go I would like to know

bət bɪˈfɔːr ˈaɪ ɡəʊ ˈaɪ wʊd ˈlaɪk tə nəʊ |

Bát bífor ái góu ái wúd láik tú nóu

why you don’t want to exhibit the picture of Dorian Gray

waɪ ju dəʊnt wɒnt tu ɪɡˈzɪbɪt ðə ˈpɪktʃər əv ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Wuáit iu dóunt wuánt tú eggssíbit dé píksher óf dórian gréi

I repeat

ˈaɪ rɪˈpiːt |

Ái ripít

it scares me to show

ɪt skeəz miː tə ʃəʊ |

Its sskérss mit tú shóu

the secret of my soul through a picture

ðə ˈsiːkrɪt əv maɪ səʊl θruː ə ˈpɪktʃə |

Dé síkret óf mái sóul zrú á píksher

And what is it?

ənd ˈwɒt s ɪt |

Ánd wuát íss it?

I’m going to tell you

aɪm ˈɡəʊɪŋ tə tel ju |

Áim góing tú tél iu

I’m listening to you, Basil

aɪm ˈlɪsn̩ɪŋ tə ju | bæzl̩ |

Aim lístening tú iu béissl

This is the story

ðɪs ɪz ðə ˈstɔːri |

Dís íss dé sstori

said the painter

ˈsed ðə ˈpeɪntə |

Séd dé péinter

Two months ago

 tuː mʌnθs əˈɡəʊ |

Tú mónzs ágou

I went to a meeting

ˈaɪ ˈwent tu ə ˈmiːtɪŋ |

Ái wuént tú á míting

at Lady Brandon’s house

ət ˈleɪdi ˈbrændənz ˈhaʊs |

Át léidi brándonss háus

I was in the  drawing room talking to various old ladies

ˈaɪ wəz ɪn ðə XXXXX ˈtɔːkɪŋ tə ˈveərɪəs əʊld ˈleɪdɪz |

Ái wuáss ín dé droing room tóking tú várias óuld léidiss

when I felt someone looking at me

wen ˈaɪ felt ˈsʌmwʌn ˈlʊkɪŋ ət miː |

Wuén ái félt sámwuan lúking át mí

I turned and saw

ˈaɪ tɜːnd ənd ˈsɔː |

Ía térnd ánd só

for the first time, Dorian Gray

fə ðə ˈfɜːst ˈtaɪm | ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Fór dé férst tám, dórian gréi

Our eyes met and I was scared

ˈaʊər aɪz met ənd ˈaɪ wəz skeəd |

Áuer áiss mét mét ánd ái wuáss skérd

I knew instantly that he was fascinating.

ˈaɪ njuː ˈɪnstəntli ðət hi wəz ˈfæsɪneɪtɪŋ |

Ái níu ínstlanli dát hí wuáss fásineiting

I felt that something terrible was going to happen to me. 

ˈaɪ felt ðət ˈsʌmθɪŋ ˈterəbl̩ wəz ˈɡəʊɪŋ tə ˈhæpən tə miː |

Ái félt dár sámzing térbol wuás góing tú hápen tú mí

I froze and wanted to leave the room. 

ˈaɪ frəʊz ənd ˈwɒntɪd tə liːv ðə ruːm |

Ái fróuss ánd wuántid tú líiv dé rúm

I ran towards the door,

ˈaɪ ræn təˈwɔːdz ðə dɔː |

Áir rán tórdss dé dóor

but Lady Brandon wouldn’t leave me.


bət ˈleɪdi ˈbrændən ˈwʊdnt liːv miː |

Bát léidi brándon wúdn’t líiv mí

Suddenly I found myself face to face with Dorian Gray

sʌdn̩li ˈaɪ faʊnd maɪˈself feɪs tə feɪs wɪð ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Sádenli ái fáund máiself féis tú féis wuíz dórian gréi

We were almost touching

wi wər ˈɔːlməʊst ˈtʌtʃɪŋ |

Wuí wuér ólmoust táching

We made eye contact. 

wi ˈmeɪd aɪ ˈkɒntækt |

Wuí méid ái kóntakt

Then I asked Lady Brandon to introduce us


ðen ˈaɪ ˈɑːskt ˈleɪdi ˈbrændən tu ˌɪntrəˈdjuːs əz |

Dén ái askt léidi bránndon tú intróduss ass

And what did Lady Brandon say

ənd ˈwɒt dɪd ˈleɪdi ˈbrændən ˈseɪ |

Ánd wuát díd léidi brándon séi

of this marvellous young man?


əv ðɪs ˈmɑːvləs jʌŋ mæn |

Óf dís márvelas íang mán

She said that he was charming

ʃi ˈsed ðət hi wəz ˈtʃɑːmɪŋ |

Shí séd dát hí wuás chárming

She said that she was a close friend of his mother

ʃi ˈsed ðət ʃi wəz ə kləʊz frend əv ɪz ˈmʌðə |

Shí sed dát shí wuás a klóuss frénd óf híss máder

and that she had forgotten what he did. 

ənd ðət ʃi həd fəˈɡɒtn̩ ˈwɒt hi dɪd |

Ánd dát shí hád forgáten wuát hí díd

Dorian Gray and I both laughed

ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ ənd ˈaɪ bəʊθ lɑːft |

Dórian gréi ánd ái bóuz láft

and suddenly we became friends

ənd sʌdn̩li wi bɪˈkeɪm frendz |

Ánd sádenli wuí bíkeim fréndss

It’s a good start

ɪts ə ɡʊd stɑːt |

Its á gúd stárt

said Lord Henry


ˈsed lɔːd ˈhenri |

Séd lórd hénri

Basil turned his head.


ˈbæzl̩ tɜːnd ɪz hed |

Bássel térnd híss héd

You don’t understand what friendship is, Harry

ju dəʊnt ˌʌndəˈstænd ˈwɒt ˈfrendʃɪp ɪz | ˈhæri |

Iú dóunt ánderstand wuát fréndship íss, hári

nor what is enmity

nɔː ˈwɒt s ˈenmɪti |

Nór wuát ís énmiti

You love everybody

ju lʌv ˈevrɪˌbɒdi |

Iu lóv evribodi

which is the same as not loving anybody

wɪtʃ ɪz ðə seɪm əz nɒt ˈlʌvɪŋ ˈenibɒdi |

Wuich íss dé séim áss nót lóving énibodi

That’s not fair!

ðæts nɒt feə |

Dáts nór fér

said Lord Henry

ˈsed lɔːd ˈhenri |

Séd lórd hénri

I know the difference between people. 

ˈaɪ nəʊ ðə ˈdɪfrəns bɪˈtwiːn ˈpiːpl̩ |

Ái nóu dé díferens bitúin pípol

I choose my best friends by their good looks

ˈaɪ tʃuːz maɪ best frendz baɪ ðeə ɡʊd lʊks |

Ái chús mái bést fréndss bái déir lúks

my colleagues by their personality

maɪ ˈkɒliːɡz baɪ ðeə ˌpɜːsəˈnælɪti |

Mái koligss báid dér persónaliti

and my enemies by their intelligence

ənd maɪ ˈenəmɪz baɪ ðeər ɪnˈtelɪdʒəns |

Ánd mái énemiss bái dér intélishens

I don’t have stupid enemies. 

| ˈaɪ dəʊnt həv ˈstjuːpɪd ˈenəmɪz |

Ái dóunt háv sstúpid énemis

Let’s speak about Dorian Gray

lets spiːk əˈbaʊt ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Léts sspík ábaut dórian grei

Do you see him often?


də ju ˈsiː ɪm ˈɒfn̩

Dú iú sí im ófen?

I see him every day

ˈaɪ ˈsiː ɪm ˈevri deɪ |

Ái sí im évri déi

I must see him every day. 

ˈaɪ məst ˈsiː ɪm ˈevri deɪ |

Ái mást sí im évri déi

I wouldn’t be happy if I didn’t see him.

ˈaɪ ˈwʊdnt bi ˈhæpi ɪf ˈaɪ ˈdɪdnt ˈsiː ɪm |

Ái wúdnt bí hápi íf ái dídnt sí im


əˈmeɪzɪŋ |


I must meet Dorian Gray!

ˈaɪ məst miːt ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Ái mást mít dórian gréi!

Then Basil Hallward got up

ðen ˈbæzl̩ ˈhɒlwərd ˈɡɒt ʌp |

Dén béissl hólwuard gát áp

and walked around the garden.

ənd ˈwɔːkt əˈraʊnd ðə ˈɡɑːdn̩ |

Ánd wuokt áraund dé gárden

A few moments later he returned.


ə fjuː ˈməʊmənt ˈleɪtə hi rɪˈtɜːnd |

Á fiú móments léiter hí ritérnd

He is my work

hi z maɪ xxxx|

Híss mái  wuórk

said the painter seriously. 

ˈsed ðə ˈpeɪntə ˈsɪərɪəsli |

Séd dé péinter síriasli

I know that my work

ˈaɪ nəʊ ðət maɪ ˈwɜːk |

Ái nóu dát mái wuórk

since I met Dorian Gray

sɪns ˈaɪ met ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Síns ái mét dórian gréi

is the best I have ever done

ɪz ðə best ˈaɪ həv ˈevə dʌn |

Íss dé bést ái háv éver dón

The simple presence of this young man

ðə ˈsɪmpl̩ ˈprezns əv ðɪs jʌŋ mæn |

Dé símpel présens óf dís íang mán

he is little over 20 years old

hi z ˈlɪtl̩ ˈəʊvə ˈtwenti ˈjiəz əʊld |

Híss lítel óver tuénti íers óuld

makes one see things in another light

ˈmeɪks wʌn ˈsiː ˈθɪŋz ɪn əˈnʌðə laɪt |

Méiks wuán si zíngs ín anáder láit

I think in a different way.

ˈaɪ ˈθɪŋk ɪn ə ˈdɪfrənt ˈweɪ |

Ái zínk ín á díferent wuéi

Tell me

tel miː |

Tél mí

does Dorian Gray affect you so much?’


dəz ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ əˈfekt ju ˈsəʊ ˈmʌtʃ |

Dáss dórian gréi áfekt iu só mách?

Yes, he replied after a silence

jes | hi rɪˈplaɪd ˈɑːftər ə ˈsaɪləns |

Íes, hí ríplaid áfter á sáilens

I know he likes me.

ˈaɪ nəʊ hi ˈlaɪks miː |

Ái nóu hí láiks mí

He is charming with me

hi z ˈtʃɑːmɪŋ wɪð miː |

Híss chárming wíz mí

and we talk for days, in the studio,

ənd wi ˈtɔːk fə deɪz | ɪn ðə ˈstjuːdɪəʊ |

Ánd wuí tók fór déis, ín dé sstúdio

although at times it seems that he enjoys hurting me.

ɔːlˈðəʊ ət ˈtaɪmz ɪt ˈsiːmz ðət hi ɪnˈdʒɔɪz ˈhɜːtɪŋ miː |

Áldou át táims ít síms dát hí enchóis hérting mí

I think I have given my soul

ˈaɪ ˈθɪŋk ˈaɪ həv ɡɪvn̩ maɪ səʊl |

Ái zínk ái háv gíven mái sóul

to a person who doesn’t appreciate it enough

tu ə ˈpɜːsn̩ huː ˈdʌznt əˈpriːʃieɪt ɪt ɪˈnʌf |

Tú a pérson hú dássent aprísheitit enáf

My dear friend.

maɪ dɪə ˈfrend |

Máid dír frénd

Now I remember…

naʊ ˈaɪ rɪˈmembə |

Náu ái rímember

Remember what, Harry?


rɪˈmembə ˈwɒt | ˈhæri |

Rímember wuát, hári

Where I heard the name Dorian Gray!’


weər ˈaɪ hɜːd ðə ˈneɪm ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ !

Wuér ái hérd dé néim dórian gréi

Where? asked the painter, a little angry.


weə?ˈɑːskt ðə ˈpeɪntə | ə ˈlɪtl̩ ˈæŋɡri |

Wuér? Áskt dé péinter, á lítl ángri

Don’t look at me like that, Basil. 

dəʊnt lʊk ət miː ˈlaɪk ðæt | ˈbæzl̩ |

Dóunt lúk át mí láik dát, béissl

It was at my aunt Agatha’s house

ɪt wəz ət maɪ ɑːnt ˈæɡəθəɪz ˈhaʊs |

Ít wuáss át mái óunt ágazass háus

She told me that she had met a marvellous young man called Dorian Gray

ʃi təʊld miː ðət ʃi həd met ə ˈmɑːvləs jʌŋ mæn kɔːld ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ |

Shí tóuld mí dát shí had mét a márvelas íang mán kóld dórian gréi

She didn’t tell me that he was beautiful. 

ʃi ˈdɪdnt tel miː ðət hi wəz ˈbjuːtəfl̩ |

Shí dídnt tél dát hí wuás bíutifol

She told me that he was very serious and was good-natured

| ʃi təʊld miː ðət hi wəz ˈveri ˈsɪərɪəs ənd wəz ɡʊd ˈneɪtʃəd |

Shí tóuld mí dát hí wuás véri sírias án wuás gúd neitsher

I imagined a person with glasses, spots and enormous feet.


ˈaɪ ɪˈmædʒɪnd ə ˈpɜːsn̩ wɪð ˈɡlɑːsɪz | spɒts ənd ɪˈnɔːməs fiːt |

Ái ímashind á pérson wuíss glásess, spóts ánd énormas fiit

I don’t want you to meet him said Basil


ˈaɪ dəʊnt wɒnt ju tə miːt ɪm ˈsed ˈbæzl̩ |

Áid dóunt wuánt iú tú mít hím séd béisl

You don’t want me to meet him?


ju dəʊnt wɒnt miː tə miːt ɪm |

Iu dóunt wuánt mí to mitim?


nəʊ |


Mister Dorian Gray is in the studio, sir

ˈmɪstə ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ z ɪn ðə ˈstjuːdɪəʊ | sɜː |

Míster dórian gréi íss ín dé sstudio, sér

said the butler, coming into the garden.


ˈsed ðə ˈbʌtlə | ˈkʌmɪŋ ˈɪntə ðə ˈɡɑːdn̩ |

Séd dé bátlet, káming intú dé gárden

Well, now you will have to introduce him to me

wel | naʊ ju wl̩ həv tu ˌɪntrəˈdjuːs ɪm tə miː |

Wuél, naú iú wuíl háv tú íntrodus him tú mí

Basil looked at Lord Henry.


ˈbæzl̩ ˈhɒlwərd lʊkt ət lɔːd ˈhenri |

Béissl hálwuard lúkt át lórd hénri

Dorian Gray is my dear friend, he said. 

ˈdɔːiən ɡreɪ z maɪ dɪə ˈfrend | hi ˈsed |

Dórian gréi íss mái dír frénd, hí séd

He has a pure and simple nature.

hi həz ə pjʊər ənd ˈsɪmpl̩ ˈneɪtʃə |

Hí hás á píur ánd símpel néisher

You would be a bad influence.

ju wʊd bi ə bæd ˈɪnflʊəns |

Íu wúd bí a bád ínfluens

The world is big and there are many interesting people.

ðə wɜːld z bɪɡ ənd ðər ɑː  ˈmeni ˈɪntrəstɪŋ ˈpiːpl̩ |

Dé wuórld íss bíg ánd dér ár méni íntresting pípol

Don’t take him away from me.

dəʊnt teɪk ɪm əˈweɪ frəm miː |

Dóun téikim ówuei fróm mí

My life as an artist depends on him.

maɪ laɪf əz ən ˈɑːtɪst dɪˈpendz ɒn ɪm |

Mái láif áss án ártist dípendss ónim

Please take it into account. I confide in you.


pliːz teɪk ɪt ˈɪntə əˈkaʊnt | ˈaɪ kənˈfaɪd ɪn ju

Plíss téikit íntu ákáunt ái kónfaid ín iú

Don’t talk rubbish’ replied Lord Henry

dəʊnt ˈtɔːk ˈrʌbɪʃ rɪˈplaɪd lɔːd ˈhenri |

Dóun tók rábish ríplaid lórd henri

who took Hallward by the arm

huː tʊk ˈhɒlwərd baɪ ði ɑːm |

Hú túk hálwuard bái dí árm

and led him into the house.

ənd xxx ɪm ˈɪntə ðə ˈhaʊs |

Ánd led íntu dé háus


Quiz Lesson 3

1) What are some of the sounds that are difficult for Spanish speakers?

a) The schwa sound.

b) v, f, t, c, s, d

c) y, i, v, w, sh, able

d) They are all difficult

2) What is connected speech?

a) The linking of words in a sentence

b)  When you connect one paragraph with another

c) When the meaning of a text has a special impact in the reader

d) There is no such a term in English

3) Try to speak with the right sounds

a) It’s not possible if you are not native

b) Means emphasizing consonants, using the schwa sound, speaking with a softer tone, trying to give English the intonation a native English speaker gives to Spanish

c) Memorising a list of sounds like the one an the beginning of this lesson

d) Imitating the accent the native speakers have

c) You repeat them so often that they won’t sound unfamiliar any longer

d) You make a sentence yours

4) What accent should you imitate?

a) British

b) American

c) The accent your more familiar with

d) You can’t imitate accents when you speak English as a second language

5) What is the schwa sound?

a) A German sound

b) The most common sound in the English language

c) It doesn’t exist

d) It appears in long sentences

Answers here

Go to lesson 4

2 comentarios

  1. Hello Monica, ¡thank you very much for the lesson 3!
    I started this course three weeks ago and it is very useful to improve my English.
    I really appreciate your time and all the effort to share your knowledge with us.
    Thanks and best regards!

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