When “can” is used with another verb, we do not stress it. We stress the verb that follows. Our pronunciation becomes “cn” (/kn/), as if the vowel didn’t exist. Examples: I can (/kn/) do it. Can(/kn/) you lend me $5.00? I can (/kn/) go later. Those Can-Can girls can (/kn/) sure dance.
However, when “can” finishes a sentence, there is heightened emotion, or you are contradicting someone, it is said completely (full vowel). Examples: I can! Speaker#1: You can’t swim. Speaker #2: I can swim. I do it every day
Intonation in Use
Can vs. Can’t (cont.)
2. Can’t :
We stress this word: The vowel is said fully, the pitch rises and it takes longer to say.
Examples: You can’t do it. You can’t go to the movies. If I can’t go, you can go. (Compare with: If I can go, you can go.) Examples of Both Can and Can’t: Can he come if you can’t? I can see that he can’t handle the job.
“ TH” / θ / /ð/
Oral structures: Tongue touches the back of the upper teeth.
Air Flow: Fricative. Air is pushed through a narrow passage and sounds like a hiss.
Voicing: Can be either voiced or voiceless.
Examples: Voiceless: think, theater Voiced: brother, that
“ TH”/ θ / /ð/
The, this, that, these, those, there, with
“ the”: Most used word in English language “ that”: Number 7 “ with”: Number 17 “ this”: Number 23 “ there”: Number 35
Emphasize the difference between “this and “these”.
- Difficulty with which is singular/which plural.
Difficulty with pronouncing them differently even when they know the differences in the meanings:
- Native English speaker will think they don’t know their grammar: “This are mine.”
“ TH”/ θ / /ð/
Pronouncing “this” vs. “these”:
Both begin with voiced “th”
Vowel: / I / in “this” and /i/ in “these”
Voiceless /s/ in “this” Voiced /z/ in “these” (they need to feel the “buzz” in their necks)
Pronunciation: Incorporating it Into the Language Learning Process from Day One FINAL QUESTIONS? Vivek Goyal, B.E. CS