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Copy of Week 1 Day 3: Spanish Pronunciation Copy

What’s in store for you today: Pronunciation and counting

Today’s goals are:

To learn about and understand Spanish pronunciation

To learn to count to 20

Listen to Track 1.3.1

María: Buenas tardes. Yo soy María Estévez.

Good afternoon. I am María Estévez.

Juan: ¿Estéves? ¿Cómo se escribe?

Estéves? How is that written?

María: E-S-T-E-V-E-Z. 


Juan: Ah, muy bien. Hola, María. Yo soy Juan García.

Oh, very good. Hello, María. I am Juan García.

Maria: Hola, Juan. ¿De dónde es?

Hello, Juan. Where are you from?

Juan: Yo soy de Argentina. ¿Y usted?

I am from Argentina. And you?

María: Yo soy de España.

I am from Spain.

Juan: ¿Cuál es su número de teléfono, María?

What is your phone number, María?

María: Mi número de teléfono es Seis-Seis-Cuatro Nueve-Ocho-Cero-Siete 

My phone number is six-six-four nine-eight-zero-seven.

How the Letters Sound

Now that we know the alphabet, let’s take those letters and actually put them into words and see what they sound like! First, let’s look at the vowels. Below you’ll find all the vowel sounds and vowel combinations you’ll ever need to know in Spanish!

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These vowel combinations are called diphthongs. Diphthongs are sounds made by two vowels that act as one syllable.

Some of the consonants in Spanish make the same sounds as our consonants in English. They are:


Speaking Practice Exercise 1

The rest, though, will sound just a little bit different. Let’s take a look at those now!

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Note: In Spain, these two consonants would be pronounced differently. They would both be said like a “th.”

Speaking Practice Exercise 2



This time, look at the list of words before you listen to the track. See if you can figure out how to pronounce them. Listen to the track, and compare how you say them to how a native Spanish speaker does.

Listen to Track 1.3.5

Béisbol Baseball
Biblioteca Library
Perro Dog
Pero But

Now, listen to the track again, and repeat the words after the speaker says them. Try to imitate their pronunciation.

Accent Marks – are they really that important?

Yes. One hundred and ten percent yes – they are important. The accent marks let you know where the stress in the word falls (i.e. where you put the emphasis). Knowing where to put the stress is very important because sometimes it can change the meaning of a word.

Before we look at accent marks, though, let’s talk about the words in Spanish that don’t have them. Even though the accents (or tildes) aren’t written in, the words still have a place where the stress will fall.

Rules to Remember

Listen to Track 1.3.6

 Words that end in a vowel, n, or s → the stress is on the penultimate (next to last) syllable.

  • Todo – All
  • Examen – Exam/Test
  • Lunes – Monday

Words ending in a consonant (notn or s) → the stress falls on the last syllable.

  • Animal – Animal
  • Profesor – Professor/Teacher
  • Feliz – Happy

Accent Marks – when we use them

If a word breaks one of these rules (i.e. the stress doesn’t fall on the “correct” syllable according to what category it fits into), then an accent mark will be written over the vowel that will take the stress.

Note: ONLY vowels will take accents in Spanish.

Listen to Track 1.3.8

Here are some examples of words with accent marks. Don’t forget to pay close attention to how they’re being pronounced, and try to repeat them after the speaker says them.

  • Árbol – Tree
  • Música – Music
  • Teléfono – Telephone
  • Café – Coffee OR Café

¡Uno, Dos, y Tres!

We’ve talked a lot about letters lately. Let’s mix it up a little and throw in some numbers! Here’s how you count to 20 in Spanish. As you listen to the video, pay very close attention to how they’re being pronounced and try to imitate the pronunciation.

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Pop quiz! How many of the numbers above have a diphthong?

Answer: Eleven.


Look at the words below. How are they pronounced? Where does the stress fall? See if you can say them correctly, then listen to the track and compare.

Listen to Track 1.3.12

  • Correo – Mail
  • Huevo – Egg
  • Junio – June
  • Todo – All
  • Girasol – Sunflower
  • Ganar – To win


  • Correo (e+o is not a diphthong. This means that the “o” here is a syllable of its own.)
  • Huevo
  • Junio
  • Todo
  • Girasol
  • Ganar

A Quick Recap of this Lesson

Today we talked about:

  • Pronunciation in Spanish.
  • Diphthongs like “ie,” “ai,” and “ue.” And we mentioned that a diphthong will make up one syllable.
  • Accents and where stress falls in words:
  • Words that end in a vowel, n, or → the stress is on the penultimate (next to last) syllable.
  • Todo – All
  • Examen – Exam/Test
  • Lunes – Monday
  • Words ending in a consonant (not n or s) → the stress falls on the last syllable
  • Animal – Animal
  • Profesor – Professor/Teacher
  •  Feliz – Happy
  • And accent marks are used when the stress doesn’t fall where it “should.”
  • How to count to 20.