1. Pronounce the [a] as in father and, at the same time, curl your tongue up and back a little. You should hear the basic English [r] sound.
2. Now with your tongue in position for the [ə] sound, curl the tip of your tongue up and back a little, and pronounce [ə] and the [r] you made in Step 1. Do not let the tip of your tongue touch any part of your mouth.
3. Now pronounce the word bur [bər]
1. Pronounce the vowel and the [ər] sound. For example, beer is pronounced [bɪər], and bear is pronounced [bɛər]
2. Try to pronounce the combination smoothly without stopping between sounds.
The English [l] has two different qualities: before vowels it is "bright," and after vowels it is "dark." In both types the tip of the tongue touches the alveolar ridge (the ridge above the teeth). The dark [l] is pronounced with the tip of the tongue more spread out than the bright [l]. Additionally, the back of the tongue is high for the bright [l] and low for the dark [l].Like the [r] above, we add an [ə] sound when an [l] sound comes after a front vowel ([a], [ɔ], and [ʊ]). For example, ball is pronounced [bɔl], but bell is pronounced [bɛəl].
You can use the links in the practice pages below to listen to examples of these sounds and practice repeating them.
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