Pronouncing vowel sounds can be challenging in a foreign language. This is because we interpret the vowels we hear through the filter of our native language. We hear a sound close to a vowel sound in our language, and our brain lumps it together with that known sound. Fortunately, we can learn to override this filter and adapt it to include a different set of vowels. But we have to know which words have the new vowel sound, and with the lack of consistent spelling in English, this is a learning process.
We have been looking at the vowel sounds one sound at a time. The best way to re-train your brain to hear these sounds is to use listening skills. But being familiar with the variations in spelling will also help you succeed.
The sound /e/; or "vowel ay," has at least nine different ways that it is spelled in English. It is most frequently spelled with the letter a and is sometimes called "long a". You can see examples of the sound's various spellings in the chart below.
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