The English Schwa sound -Why it's important

VIDEO- English Schwa Sound-Why Is It Important

English Schwa Sound- Why It’s Important

I have written about the English schwa sound before, the unstressed vowel, and mentioned that it’s actually the most common vowel in English! That’s one of the reasons it’s so important in English.

If you can’t say or use it in words, then you have trouble sounding natural in English. The English schwa sound needs to be used to convey the correct stress and rhythm of English. That’s another big reason it’s so important in English. The English schwa sound is the sound used to de- stress vowels in words and syllables (hence the frogs in the picture on the bench relaxing and being unstressed!). Without this, English speech sounds staccato and unnatural.

This time I thought I would make a video for you explaining about the schwa sound. Also have a look here, here and here for more training in the English schwa sound.

So have a look at the video and if you have any further questions about the English schwa sound, feel free to ask me in the comments section below.

Best wishes, Esther

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Comments 6

  1. Thank you I am trying to speak English as much as I can always I read story and newspaper and watch TV speak to my friends to need improve my English language.
    thank so much for your advise and keep in touch.

    1. You’re welcome! It sounds like you’re getting a lot of great practise in! Practising with people (or with videos etc.) is the best way to improve. Keep going and you’ll reach your goal in no time! 🙂

  2. Thank you I am trying to speak English as much as I can always I read story and newspaper and watch TV speak to my friends to need improve my English language.
    thank so much for your advise and keep in touch.

    1. You’re welcome! It sounds like you’re getting a lot of great practise in! Practising with people (or with videos etc.) is the best way to improve. Keep going and you’ll reach your goal in no time! 🙂

    1. Hi Rodrigues, Good question! Function words such as the, a, prepositions, conjunctions, to, of etc are not pronounced with a schwa (de-stressed vowel) when you need to use them to let the listener know you have a specific intention or meaning you want them to understand.
      Then, the vowel in the function word is said as a stressed -clear- vowel and not a schwa vowel. For example, ‘I asked you to take the mat TO the bathroom. ‘ meaning: I didn’t want you to just drop it on the chair.
      Another example is in this sentence where the conjunction ‘and’ is not said with a schwa which it usually is in this type of situation: ‘I had jam AND cream on my toast this morning.’ to signify that usually I only have jam, but today I also had cream. So, the ‘and’ (conjunction) is said clearly and the ‘a’ is stressed. Usually we just say ‘jam ‘n’ cream’.

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