FAST ENGLISH—Everything You Need To Speak Fast English Like a Native Speaker

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Rachel: In today's video, we're going to go over how

to speak English fast. And we're also going to go over one mistake you want to make sure

you avoid when you're trying to pick up your pace speaking English.

First, let's listen to a native speaker speaking quickly. This is my friend Tom who you might

recognize because he's been on this channel before. Hi is an outstanding accent coach

in my online school "Rachel's English Academy."

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: That sounds pretty natural doesn't it? Pretty

American. To me it sounds completely conversational and completely natural. But it is really fast.

What is he doing?

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: He's speaking with reductions. He's takes

I-am-going-to and pronounces it 'I'm goin' to.'

We actually have 3 reductions there and they each show a very good example of how to speak

fast in American English. So let's break it down and study. Actually first, let's compare

this sentence. What if he said the sentence with no reductions at all then what would

it sound like?

Tom: Hi Rachel, I am going to Starbucks.

Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: Wow, there's a big difference there. One's

natural, sounds fast, very American. The other one sounds completely unnatural. All of the

sounds are American and the melody is American but somehow it just doesn't work out to sound

like a natural conversational Englsih.

Tom: Hi Rachel, I am going to Starbucks.

Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: Let's look at the very beginning. He takes

'I am' and says 'I'm' a contraction. Tip #1: Use contractions. Americans use contractions

when speaking English all the time. If you never use a contraction, it would start to

sound a little unnatural. A contraction is a kind of reduction. And

I guess I should define reductions here. A reduction is when we change or drop a sound.

So in the combination 'I am', we have the I dipthong, the A vowel, the M consonant,

I am. But when we make a contraction, we drop the A vowel and it becomes 'I'm','I'm.' So

that drop sound means this is a reduction.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: Notice he's not saying I'm. He's saying: I'm,

I'm, I'm. He's saying it really quickly. You can too. Practice that with me. I'm, I'm,

I'm.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: There are so many contractions in American

English. Take for example, you are that becomes 'you're'. But actually even that reduces.

It's very common to pronounce that you're, you're, you're. We change the vowel to the

schwa and we make it super fast. You're going to love this. You're, you're. You're

doing so well. You're, you're. I think you're right. You're, you're. So fast.

Because there are so many contractions and tricks to their pronunciation, I'm going to

put together a playlist on how to speak English fast. I'm going to put lots of videos in there

that supplement what we're learning here today. So I'm going put in videos on contractions

including a really fun one that includes some real-life English.

Woman: That's because she's a good teacher.

Rachel: That's because. Did you hear that? Another

contraction. That is, that's. Okay, let's go back to Tom's sentence.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: I'm goin' to. Going. An 'ing' verb. He changed

the 'ng' ending sound at the end and made it an in' instead. Goin' instead of going.

So when we make this change it changes the vowel too. The I vowel, when it's followed

by 'ng' tends to sound more like EE. But when it's followed just by 'n', then it does sound

like a pure E. So, going ing, ing, ing sounds like E plus ng. And 'goin', in, in, in sounds

like the E vowel and the N consonant. And I do feel like I'm able to make that ending

faster. Going. goin'.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: We've changed a sound. An example of a reduction.

So tip 1 was use contractions. Tip 2 expands that, Use Reductions. We have so many of em'

in American English and Americans use them all the time when they speak.

It is common to change the ing ending to an in' ending. You'll hear other people do it.

Did you hear that? Doin' instead of doing. So we do it especially with really common

words in casual conversations. If you do this all the time, always change the ing ending

to an in' consonant. It will probably start to sound like a southern dialect. Nothing

wrong with that if you live in the southern part of the US and you want that dialect.

But if you want a more standard American accent, use this reduction a little sparingly.

Let's go back to Tom's sentence. Wow! It is a tiny sentence and he is showing us so many

things that makes us speak faster when we speak American English. We're going to learn one

more tip on how to speak English fast before we get into our mistake that I wanna make

sure that you avoid.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: The word 'to'. How did he pronounce it?

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: I didn't hear 'tu'. And I didn't hear 'u',

to. What did you hear?

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: Hmmm. Let's listen to the sentence when he's

fully pronouncing everything.

Tom: Hi Rachel, I am going to Starbucks.

Rachel: Now I did hear the true T and the U vowel.

But both of those sounds changed when he was speaking more casually.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: What's happening? 2 things. First, the true

T, tu. He's changing that to a flap T. The true T is a stop consonant. It has 2 parts.

A stop and a release. The flap T is a quick single flap of the tongue against the roof

of the mouth. So I can make that more quickly duh duh duh duh duh rather than tu, tu, tu, tu,

tu which sorts of stops the momentum. In American English it is very common to change the T

to a flap T in certain situations. Those situations are: when the T sound comes between two vowels

or when the T sound comes after an R and before a vowel. And I should say, when I say vowel

in these rules, I do mean vowel or dipthong. Let's listen to how Tom says it again.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: Okay now there it came after an N before a

vowel. Okay sometimes with the word to, the word today, the word tomorrow. In those 3

words probably together too. The beginning T can become a flap T even if the sound before

wasn't a vowel dipthong or an R. They can do that when the sound before was voiced like

in this case, the N. That sound is voiced 'n'.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: So he makes the T a flap T. He changes the

vowel to the schwa. Very common reduction. This word will almost never be pronounced

to. It will usually be pronounced 'tu' with a true T or 'tu' with a flap T. Now he did the

flap T as we've already discussed and we talked about we make a flap T when it comes between

certain sounds. What does it mean comes between? It's the beginning of the word. The letter

T is the beginning of the word 'to'. But wait, this brings us to tip 3 and that is linking.

Linking will help you speak more quickly and it is how Americans speak all the time. Let's

listen to his sentence again.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: The N sound goes right into the flap T with

no brake. In American English, the unit of the word doesn't matter in spoken Englsih.

We don't do anything to signal the end of a word, the beginning of the next word. Within

a single thought group all of the words, all of the sounds link together smoothly transitioning from

one sound to the next. Because of this, it means the phrase like f'or getting my' sounds

just like 'forgetting my.' It's my fault for getting my hopes up. For

getting my, for getting my. I keep forgetting my homework. Forgetting my, forgetting my.

For getting my sounds just like forgetting my because the sounds are the same, the stress

is the same and there's no differentiation between word units in spoken English. The

unit we use in spoken English is a thought group. That is the words that make up a single

thought that we articulate. Now that might include brakes as we think of what to say

and those brakes each make a new thought group. But the important thing to know is linking.

Within a thought group, everything links together smoothly with no brakes. That means a T can

become a flap T when it links 2 words together and follows the rules. Another example linking

the word at with the article A: at a, at a, at a, at a. That becomes a flap T. That sound

links the 2 words together. I do have a playlist on linking. I go over

the different kinds of links and how to practice them to really smooth out your speech, click

here or on the video description and actually I'll add that to the playlist 'How to Speak

Fast in American English.' So we have the flap T. We talked about a true

T. T, T. The stop and the release. We actually have another way that we pronounce the T and

that is as a stop T. That means that we make the stop but we don't release. For example

in the word 'thoughtful.' Thought-ful. You didn't hear t t t buy you heard thought-ful.

A quick brake. I'm exaggerating it there. thoughtful, thoughtful. There it is at a regular

spoken pace. Do you hear that little lift between syllables. Thoughtful, thoughtful.

It's not thoughful, thoughful. That little lift between syllables is the stop, is the

stop T. And just so you know, there are 2 other ways

you might hear the T sound pronounced. First, totally dropped. We do this sometimes after

N like in the word 'interview' or 'internet' or 'center'. And the other thing that we do

with the T is we can make it actually we often make it a ch sound when it's followed by R

like in the word 'train'. T is maybe the most complicated sound as far as how much it changes.

I will make sure that I link to a whole playlist on all of these T pronunciations here and

also on the video description. But this video is not about T pronunciations. It's about

how to speak English fast. Let's go back to Tom's sentence.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: Okay so we've talked about tips for speaking

English fast. Use contractions, use reductions, use linking. I said there is one thing I wanted

to tell you to make sure not to do. And that one thing is cheat your stress syllables.

Let's listen to his sentence again. What is the stressed syllable?

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: Starbucks. It's very clear. It's longer. It

has an up down shape in pitch. That is the shape of stress. Starbucks. Now what would

that sentence sound like if he had cheated that. If he had also made that syllable really

fast. Then it would sound something like: I'm going to Starbucks. I'm going to Starbucks. I'm

going to Starbucks. Listen to how he says it again.

Tom: Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: And I need that. I need that longer syllable.

That stressed syllable. It gives me my anchor. And that's why we still understand each other.

If everything was reduced and linked and said extremely quickly. I wouldn't be able to understand

anything. But it's these longer stressed syllables that give me my anchor in these sentences,

that help my mind organize when I'm hearing that help me understand. And when you don't

use reductions at all and everything is fully pronounced then I lose my anchors. They're

less clear. That's why it's really important for people to understand you for you to use

reductions. It seems like well that's not a very clear pronunciation I shouldn't use

it. But actually you should. Because it's that contrast of really fast with the longer

stressed syllable that helps us understand you. It gives us the context, the structure

of American English. Let's listen to the two sentences in contrast one more time.

Tom: Hi Rachel, I am going to Starbucks.

Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: Did you notice how we were wearing different

outfits? This is from a fun video series I did with Tom a while back while we wore casual

clothes when we were speaking natural American English and then we wore very formal clothes

when we we were speaking with no reductions and only true T pronunciations. And I wanna

want to say that's not a formal way of talking. It's just an unnatural way of talking but we did

this outfit change to add to the contrast.

Tom: Hi Rachel, I am going to Starbucks.

Hey Rach, I'm goin' to Starbucks.

Rachel: I don't want to tease you with just that one

sentence. Let's go ahead and watch the full lesson. You'll be able to study how we speak

English fast. How we speak English really quickly by using reductions, linking, contractions

and things like the flap T.

Tom: Do you want to come along?

You wanna come along?

Rachel: Do you. Do is reduced so much that we almost

don't hear it. Just a light D sound. The vowel in you isn't quite a pure u either. It's a

little more relaxed heading towards the schwa. do you, do you, do you. Do you wanna. Want to reduces

to wanna. Do you wanna. Do you wanna.

Tom: Do you want to come along?

You wanna come along? Do you want to come along?

You wanna come along?

Rachel: No thank you Tom.

No thanks. Thank you becomes thanks. One last syllable

No thank you Tom. No thanks.

No thank you Tom. No thanks.

I have got too much I want to get done here. I've got too much I wanna get done here.

I have becomes I've. Got too. Just one T between those two words. Got too. Got too. Want to

becomes wanna. Wanna. Get. We use a stop T sound here because the next sound is a consonant.

Get done. Get done. I have got too much I want to get done here.

I've got too much I wanna get done here. I have got too much I want to get done here.

I've got too much I wanna get done here.

Tom: Okay. I will be back soon.

OK. I'll be back soon.

Rachel: I will becomes I'll reduced to I'll

Tom: Okay. I will be back soon.

OK. I'll be back soon. Okay. I will be back soon.

OK. I'll be back soon.

Rachel: Oh, I would love a coffee though.

Oh, I'd like a coffee though.

I would becomes I'd

Oh, I would love a coffee though. Oh, I'd like a coffee though.

Oh, I would love a coffee though. Oh, I'd like a coffee though.

Tom: Medium?

Rachel: That will be fine.

Tom: Medium?

Rachel: That'll be fine.

That will becomes that'll. A two syllable word with stress on the first syllable. The

T at the end of that is a flap T because it comes with two vowels. That'll. That'll.

Tom: Medium?

Rachel: That will be fine.

Tom: Medium?

Rachel: That'll be fine.

Tom: Medium?

Rachel: That will be fine.

Tom: Medium?

Rachel: That'll be fine.

Tom: Great! See you in a bit.

Great. Seeya in a bit.

Rachel: Great with a stop T. This is because it's

the end of a sentence. You is more relaxed here. Not an u vowel but more of a schwa.

See ya, see ya. And finally, bit. With a stop T, bit, bit. Again, because it's coming at

the end of a sentence.

Tom: Great! See you in a bit.

Great. Seeya in a bit. Great! See you in a bit.

Great. Seeya in a bit.

Rachel: So many options for reductions and contractions

in such a short conversation. I also have a playlist of all four videos that Tom and

I made in that video series I called it a 'Contractversation' you can check it out here

or on the video description below. You've got a lot to do to study how to speak English

really fast. There are so many habits to make your own. One thing that helps a lot is studying

real English conversation and I'm excited to tell you that this summer, we're going

to do just that. We're going to learn English with movies. We're going to take some of the

summer's hottest blockbusters: Captain Marvel, Avengers Endgame and we're going to take small

scenes and study them. We're going to study T pronunciations, reductions, stress. All of

this great stuff. I'm also going to make a free audio lesson that's downloadable to go with

each video. If you want to get in with those free audio

lessons, sign up by clicking here or in the video description below. I'm doing this because

I don't want to bombard people with emails if they don't want them. You'll only get the

audio lessons that are free download with the videos if you sign up.

What! Are you serious!? Come on!

Rachel: That's one of the scenes we'll be studying.

This all starts June 18, get ready to join me, we're going to study English together all

summer long. That's it and thanks so much for using Rachel's

English!

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