These two consonants are paired together because they take the same mouth position. Learn the correct mouth position for these sounds to pronounce them clearly and accurately.
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In this American English pronunciation video, we’re going to learn how to pronounce the G and K consonant sounds.
These two sounds are paired together because take the same mouth position.
Kk– is unvoiced, meaning only air passes through the mouth and Gg– is voiced, meaning you make a sound with the vocal cords. Gg–
These consonants are Stop Consonants which means there are two parts to each sound.
First, a stop in the airflow and second, a release.
We stop the flow of air here, closing out vocal cords while the back part of the tongue reaches up to touch the soft palate.
I’m going to slow down the K sound in the word ‘back’.
See if you can hear the stop of air before the release.
Here, you can see the tongue position.
The back of the tongue reaches up to touch the soft palate which is closed.
The tip of the tongue can remain forward, lightly touching the back of the bottom front teeth.
The jaw drops a little bit and the lips are open.
Kk– Gg– The lip position doesn’t matter for these sounds.
So the lips might start forming the next sound like in the word ‘great’.
Here, the lips can start taking the position for the R, as we make the G. Gg– gg– great.
Let’s look at these sounds up close and in slow motion.
The jaw drops and the back of the tongue lifts to touch the soft palate,
then the tongue releases.
Sometimes, to make a sentence smoother, the
words more linked together, native speakers will skip the release of a
Stop Consonant when the next word begins with a consonant.
For example, the phrase ‘back to work’.
Back to– back to– I’m not saying back to– kk–with the full release of the K.
I’m holding the air for a fraction of a second
with my throat making that stop, then I go right into the release of the T consonant.
Back to– back to– back to work.
Without the release of the K in ‘back’, the
two words flow together more easily, making it smoother.
Notice I do make a light release of the K in the word ‘work’.
Can you hear it?
Back to work.
Let’s look at some words up close and in slow motion.
The word ‘keep’.
Because the tongue lifts at the back, and does not require much jaw drop,
it’s hard to see this sound in this word.
The word ‘green’.
The lips round for the G because they need to round for the next sound, R.
The lip position doesn’t change the G sound.
It’s a little easier to see the back of the
tongue move when it’s at the end of the word like this word ‘egg’.
The tongue lifts in the back then releases.
The G and K consonants.
Repeat with me.