INTERESTING can be three OR four syllables! Learn the simplest way to pronounce this word like a native by making a CH sound for the second T.
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In this American English pronunciation video, we’re going to go over the interesting pronunciation of the word ‘interesting’.
This word can be pronounced a couple of different ways. Thanks for the request for this video.
This word can be four or three syllalbles. If it’s four syllables, it can be pronounced IN-te-res-ting. Interesting. Oh, that’s interesting. Or, as you know, Americans sometimes drop the T after an N. So you’ll definitely hear it pronounced this way: IN-er-es-ting. Interesting.
I pronounce it as just three syllables. And when we do that, we tend to change the T to a CH sound. We do this with the TR cluster a lot, you’ve probably noticed. ‘Train’ usually sounds more like ‘chrain’.
As a three-syllable word, stress is still on the first syllable. DA-da-da. Interesting. In. The IH as in SIT vowel. It can be difficult for non-native speakers. The tendency is to make the EE vowel instead. EE-nteresting. Een. But it should be ‘in’. It’s a little more relaxed. Though the tongue position is similar, it’s not as close to the roof of the mouth, ih, in-. Also, think of droping your jaw just a little bit more. Een-, in-. So the tongue tip is forward, lightly touching the back of the bottom front teeth, while the mid-front part arches up. But again, it doesn’t get too close to the roof of the mouth, ih. For the N, the tongue tip goes to the roof of the mouth. In-ch. Now it’s where it needs to be for the CH: at the roof of the mouth. We stop the air, and pull the tongue back for the R, in-chr. Notice how the lips flare for the CH and the R. In-chr. Now we have the schwa so the tongue relaxes forward again so the tip is down. I’m going to show how the tongue moves in this word with my finger. Interesss. For the S, the tongue tip is also down, and we push air through the teeth, ss. “Inchrusss.”
Now we have a True T, but it’s a little weak. It doesn’t start a stressed syllable, so, (with hand), TT, the escape of air isn’t quite that strong. But the tongue does go to the roof of the mouth and pull away. Interest-. Tt, tt, tt, a little burst of air. Interes-ting, -ting. Now we have the IH vowel, but it does get a little tighter when it’s followed by an NG. So, in this case, maybe you can think of it being like an EE vowel. –Ting, interesting, -ting. It’s unstressed, so it should be fast, -ting. Back of the tongue touches the roof of the mouth for the NG sound at the soft palate. Interesting.
Though I’ve taught you here with the CH sound, you can also just make a T sound: Interesting, tt, tt, tt, interesting. I think ‘interesting’ with the CH is a little easier, and little more common.
Now you’ve learned the mechanics of how to make the word. Work on that for a little while, and then forget it. Now, just do some listen and repeat with me.
Great, now let’s see this word up close and in slow motion.
Because of the position of the teeth, you can barely see the tongue move up for the N. You can clearly see the flared lips for the CH and R. The lips come into a tighter circle for the R. The corners relax out for the schwa and S. And you can’t even see the last syllable because the jaw doesn’t really need to drop. Let’s watch again.
Because of the position of the teeth, you can barely see the tongue move up for the N. You can clearly see the flared lips for the CH and R. The lips come into a tighter circle for the R. The corners relax out for the schwa and S. And you can’t even see the last syllable because the jaw doesn’t really need to drop.
If there’s a word or phrase you’d like help pronouncing, please put it in the comments below.
Also, I’m very excited to tell you that my book is now on sale. If you liked this video, there’s a lot more to learn about American English pronunciation, and my book will help step by step. You can get it by clicking here, or in the description below.
That’s it, and thanks so much for using Rachel’s English.
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