Our pinyin practice lesson for today focuses on one of the more challenging sounds in the Chinese language. And the reason English speakers have difficulty with it is fairly simple: there is no good English equivalent. Not that we could think of, at least.
In an effort to help you hunt down this sound and overpower it though, in this podcast we review this sound in all of its strange tonal glory. We first go over the sound in all four tones, and then practice putting it into words and then sample sentences. If you made improving your pronunciation a part of your New Years resolutions way back in January, we think this will come in useful. Just speak along with Echo and disregard the crazy looks your coworkers give you: they're just jealous you're speaking Chinese.
On a closing note, we've enabled our recording hotline for this lesson, so if you're a premium subscriber you're invited to call us using the custom PIN number that you'll find on this lesson's text page. Practice recording our words and sample sentences back for us and we'll have one of our teachers listen to it and get back to you with one-on-one feedback about your pronunciation.