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How To Lose Your Accent In Spanish

 ***CLICK HERE to listen to this lesson instead of reading it!***


        Before we begin, I would like to say that there is NOTHING wrong with having an accent while speaking a foreign language. Speaking any language other than your own native language is already very impressive. However, for some people, they have not fully mastered a language until they have lost their accent. Some people want not only to be as fluent as a native, but also, to sound like a native as well. If you are one of those people, and have not yet found out how to do it, I will tell you how I achieved it.

1. Know The Sounds That Letters Make

        I know it sounds silly, but this is something that many Spanish language learners from all levels still get wrong. That thing is the correct pronunciation of words. If you want to sound natural, then you need to know how to make all of the sounds of the letters of the alphabet from A to Z. You may be thinking, "I Already know the sounds that the letters make!"  That may be true, but are you applying it to your speech every time that you speak Spanish? Luckily many of the sounds in the Spanish alphabet are the same in the English alphabet, but there are some changes. I will list examples of this. (I recommend that you listen to my PODCAST for clarification.)

        The first example that I would like to give is the pronunciation of vowel sounds. The vowels make the word. If you are not pronouncing the vowels correctly, you could accidentally be saying another word or worse; you could be saying nothing at all! Although they look the same, A-E-I-O-U in English is different than A-E-I-O-U in Spanish. When you are speaking Spanish forget the English pronunciation of vowels and consonants so that they will not confuse you. In your brain, at that moment, the only pronunciation that is welcome is the Spanish pronunciation. You have to train yourself to leave your knowledge of English letters behind until it becomes second nature to speak the sounds of the Spanish letters correctly. For example, "R" in Spanish requires one to roll their tongue to pronounce it correctly. This means that the English unrolled "R" will not work. The English "R" is never used in Spanish. There are many other Spanish letters that aren't pronounced like English ones which I will write about in another podcast. It is important to get this part right as it is essential for native speaking. 

2. Imitate People

        I mentioned this briefly in my first article, 5 Tips To REALLY Master Spanish, but I would like to go further in depth with this concept. Imitating someone will not only let you hear how the grammar fits together, but it will also provide you with a reliable source to refer back to. I recommend listening to Spanish music, a show, or a podcast, and pausing it after every sentence, so that you can repeat what is said and your tongue can get used to the formation that is required to make the sounds. Repeat after the person you listen to until you sound just like them. After a while you will notice that when you formulate your own sentences, that you no longer have the accent of your mother tongue, but the one that you have been studying. At first it will feel weird, but eventually, you will get used to it and you will be proud of your new native sound.

Conclusion

        I am from the United States, and my first language was English. My parents do not speak any Spanish at all. When I speak it, native speakers always tell me that I sound Dominican, Cuban, or Puerto Rican. I say this, not to brag, but to encourage you and let you know that if I can succeed in losing my accent, you can too! Good Luck! If this article helped you, please comment and share.






        

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