A Guide to English Phonetics

Have you ever wondered when looking in a dictionary what the funny little symbols that appear next to the words mean? They are phonetic symbols, a guide to pronunciation, however you need to know the sound associated with the symbols in order to build up the sound of the word.

To help you I have developed this simple guide to the most common symbols. Click on the button to hear the individual sound associated with that particular symbol, then click on the word to hear the sound as it is used in a common word.

To listen to all the sounds click on the small arrow and a nifty little player will appear.

As in father Father
As in act Act
As in dive Dive
As in fire Fire
As in out Out
As in flour Flour
As in bet Bet
As in paid Paid
As in bear Bear
As in get Get
As in pretty Pretty
As in see See
As in fear Fear
As in yes Yes
As in pot Pot
As in note Note
As in thaw Thaw
As in void Void
As in pull Pull
As in zoo Zoo
As in poor Poor
As in potter Potter
As in fern Fern
As in cut Cut
As in ship Ship
As in treasure Treasure
As in chew Chew
As in jaw Jaw
As in thin Thin
As in these These
As in sing Sing