To know correct positions of tounge is the holy grail for all China expats to pronounce characters correctly. The best way is to work with a native who's patient enough to correct your tounge positions. In this regards, my children are my BEST teachers.
My tip for living in China is to drill how to pronounce these close to correctly otherwise no one can understand you.
Introduction to Chinese Phonetics
韵母 yùn mǔ
Since first grade in school, all chinese kids are asked to memorize these. NOTE: that they are not read the same as in english. For example: b is read bo, p is po. If you want to master chinese pronounciation in all four tones, be sure to ask your Chinese teacher to drill you on part 1 and 2 below using the combinations of all four tones. Ask for correct tounge position before and after making the sound. Repeat prononciating all these below until fluent.
1. Chinese initial sounds or consonants (声调shēng diào) are
b, p, m, f, d, t, n, l
g k h j q x
zh, ch, sh , r, z, c, s
2. Commonly used Chinese vowels or final sounds (韵母yùn mǔ) are
ai, ei, ui, ao, ou, iu, ie, üe, er
an, en , in, un, ün
ang, eng, ing, ong
3. Combinations. Put them (part 1 and 2) together they make words: for example
kan = k + an
zhao = zh + ao
4. Chinese tones: there are 4 Chinese tones. The tones are illustrated in the pinyin with a symbol over the letter. For example: ā á ǎ à First tone, second, third, and fourth tone.
Copyright 2009 KellyElin. All rights reserved.
Last updated 2016