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  1. Newbie
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      • Native Language:
      • Italian
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      • Italy
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      • Italy

    • Join Date: Sep 2014
    • Posts: 4

    Is my pronunciation correct

    Once upon a time there lived in a certain village a little country girl, the prettiest creature who was ever seen. Her mother was excessively fond of her; and her grandmother doted on her still more. This good woman had a little red riding hood made for her. It suited the girl so extremely well that everybody called her Little Red Riding Hood. One day her mother, having made some cakes, said to her, "Go, my dear, and see how your grandmother is doing, for I hear she has been very ill. Take her a cake, and this little pot of butter."
    Little Red Riding Hood set out immediately to go to her grandmother, who lived in another village.
    As she was going through the wood, she met with a wolf, who had a very great mind to eat her up, but he dared not, because of some woodcutters working nearby in the forest. He asked her where she was going. The poor child, who did not know that it was dangerous to stay and talk to a wolf, said to him, "I am going to see my grandmother and carry her a cake and a little pot of butter from my mother."
    "Does she live far off?" said the wolf
    "Oh I say," answered Little Red Riding Hood; "it is beyond that mill you see there, at the first house in the village."
    "Well," said the wolf, "and I'll go and see her too. I'll go this way and go you that, and we shall see who will be there first."
    The wolf ran as fast as he could, taking the shortest path, and the little girl took a roundabout way, entertaining herself by gathering nuts, running after butterflies, and gathering bouquets of little flowers. It was not long before the wolf arrived at the old woman's house. He knocked at the door: tap, tap.
    "Who's there?"
    "Your grandchild, Little Red Riding Hood," replied the wolf, counterfeiting her voice; "who has brought you a cake and a little pot of butter sent you by mother."
    The good grandmother, who was in bed, because she was somewhat ill, cried out, "Pull the bobbin, and the latch will go up."
    The wolf pulled the bobbin, and the door opened, and then he immediately fell upon the good woman and ate her up in a moment, for it been more than three days since he had eaten. He then shut the door and got into the grandmother's bed, expecting Little Red Riding Hood, who came some time afterwards and knocked at the door: tap, tap.
    "Who is there?"

  2. Skrej's Avatar
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    English Teacher
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    Re: Is my pronunciation correct

    Hello, PG.

    I noticed you consistently have problems pronouncing the 'th' sound, in words like mother, grandmother, that. You seem to alternate between /t/ and /d/ when you attempt this 'th' sound.

    Other than than, your pronunciation is good - a few isolated words which I noticed you mispronounced are listed below. However, those were isolated, and not indicative of a consistent error as with the 'th' sound.

    One other error I heard a few times, is that you tend to trill your /r/ sounds, especially the first time you say 'girl'. It happens a couple of other times, although not quite as strongly trilled.

    You have some minor difficulties aspirating the /h/ sound, especially when it begins the word, as in 'her'. You pronounce it more as 'air'. Later with 'see how' you pronounce it as 'see ouw'.

    One other issue I noticed, which became more evident in the latter half of the passage was your sentence-level intonation and stress. Your native Italian method of determining the timing of stresses by syllables became more prevalent.

    Rather than making a long post about stress timed vs. syllable timed, which you may already be aware of, I'll just offer this video, which does a decent job of briefly explaining the differences. I suspect you're already aware of the concept anyway, because during the first half of your recording, you do a better job of stress-timing. It's the latter half where you start to slip back into some syllable-timing, and even then it's not 100% pure syllable timing. If you have further questions about this, it's probably better to create a whole new post about it.

    Specific word pronunciation issues:

    village - you pronounce it with a long 'a', when it's more of a short 'i' sound.
    creature - you pronounce this with 3 syllables, stressing it on the added middle syllable - cre-A-ture. It should just be two syllables stressed on the first CRE-ture
    excessively - you stress this word incorrectly. Stress should be on the 2nd syllable, you stress the third syllable.
    grandmother - in addition to the 'th' problem mentioned above, you consistently stress the 3rd (middle) syllable - grand-MO-ther, when it's correctly stressed on the first GRAND-mo-ther.
    wolf - you tend to pronounce the final /f/ as more of a /v/.
    bouquets - you mispronounce this as something more like 'buckets'.

    Overall, your pronunciation is pretty good. I do hear some of your first language stress patterns, which for me was actually the more prevalent issue than individual word pronunciation. My suggestion would be to concentrate on sentence-level intonation and stress, with some practice of the 'th' sound.

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