What is a Phonetic chart?
Every language has two forms – the written form and the spoken form.
The written form of a language uses the alphabet.
The spoken form of a language uses Phonemes. In other words what you write is not always what you say in English.
Example: Put and cut are spelled the same. They are spoken differently.
But if you wrote put and cut in phonetic letters you would know exactly how to enunciate them.
Here is how you write them in Phonemes.
picture of Phonetic chart
Why should you learn Phonetic alphabet?
If you are a student of English and wish to achieve a native level ability to speak, it would be very helpful in enunciating the right sounds.
If you were looking up a word in a dictionary the pronunciation of that word is written in phonetic letters. If you are a teacher in English you will be clearer about the sounds of the language you teach and how to correctly write them or read them. It is much like reading musical notes. If English were a language it would be sung differently in different places and you could read the music.
Importance of sounds of a language – English
Most languages of the western world are very different in they way they are structured to the eastern languages. The big difference is that eastern languages write what they say. Whereas English, French, German and other western languages don’t say what they write! If you weren’t French would you know how to say “champaign”.
Why was there a need for using Phonemes?
a system representing 44 sounds or more has 26 letters that’s where the need arises. so the English language as it evolved was more and more organized. Early speakers of English had several ways to spell a word and that could greatly vary from region to region or sometimes person to person. Many words are spelled (spelt)differently but said in less varied sounds.
The International Phonetic Alphabet has standardized symbols representing fundamental sounds of the English Language.
How to write your name in IPA?
Here is what you do to write your name in the phonetic alphabet. Look at the chart below and use the symbol to write your name.