Accents American

Day 3/30 American

American accent development

Tongue in the middle

So far, I have paid attention to the three oral postures for developing an American accent. Not to get overwhelmed, I focused on one posture so far: the position of the tongue. It should be relaxed and in the middle of the mouth, behind the lower teeth. I should memorise the said phrase ad nauseum so I can own this accent.


Since I am developing awareness day by day I allow myself to implement another tip: the sigh. Because the default position of American is a relaxed jaw, lip and tongue, the physical act of sighing should help to maintain it. I practised a “duh” and “ə” sighing exercise with my student today, at regular intervals in the lesson.

It’s a fact that penguins can waddle as fast as humans can walk.

Student B

Accents American

How to Do an American Accent

In general American, pay attention to the three oral postures: the lips, the jaw and the tongue. They are all pretty relaxed. The tongue is in the middle of the mouth and dropped down behind the lower teeth.

You can check you are in the correct general American if you relax your lips, jaw, and tongue and sigh “uh”. Then you get the schwa sound, symbolised by ə. ə is in the middle of your mouth as in love, glov e, above.

If you forget the general American posture, do the də (duh) test.