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What the Pronunciation Difficulties for Foreigners to Learn Chinese Are

For many foreigners who have just come into contact with Chinese, some of the sounds are hard to pronounce well or cannot be pronounced. Here are some summaries.

No.1 Initials "b d g" and "p t k"
Obviously it is the difference between aspirated and non-aspirated sounds. Most foreigners can make these sounds, but some students are not used to making them, because there is no such expiratory sound in their mother tongue, and it seems impolite to make them especially obvious. In such case, the teacher must train the students to get used to the special expiratory sounds in Chinese.

No.2 Initials "f" and "h"
When pronouncing "f", one needs to bite one's lower lip lightly with one's upper teeth, while "h" is the back tone of the tongue root. The two pronunciation positions and methods are different. As long as one pays attention to the right position, it is easier to pronounce correctly. Korean people often can't distinguish these two sounds, which is related to the pronunciation habits of Korean. If you let them read "hei hua fei fa hui", probably, some people will read " hua hua hui hua hui".

No.3 Initials "l" and "n"
It seems that these two sounds are not so difficult for foreigners. After teaching for so many years, I have found few foreigners who can’t distinguish these two. However, for people in some dialect-dominated areas, this is the most difficult pair. To distinguish "lan qiu" and "nan qiu", especially the latter one with "n" added after it and the like, is extremely difficult for them and they cannot recognize the differences. In fact, "n" is a nasal sound and "le" is a side sound. If you hold your nose, "n" will definitely not come out. When you send "l", your mouth should be opened relatively large. When your pronunciation is not good, in most cases, your mouth haven’t been opened correctly.

No.4 Initials "z c s", "zhch sh" and "j q x"
It is very difficult to distinguish these sounds for both foreigners and people in the dialect-dominated areas in China. They are easily to be misread as "wo ji ji". Therefore, you must strengthen the practice of comparison after learning them. When read "zh ch sh" , you need to roll up your tongue, but don't roll it too much, otherwise it will sound like Erhua. As "j q x" are tongue-in-cheek sounds, the mouth should be opened sidewards when reading them, while as"z c s" are tongue-in-tongue sounds, the mouth does not need to be opened sidewards .

No.5 Vowel "e"
"e" can be said to be the least favorite vowel for foreigners. Even if you stretch your neck hard, you can’t pronounce it well. As a result, the pronunciation of "ü e", "en" and "eng" ,which are related to “e”, will be affected. Most people don't open their mouths when they send e. If teachers hear something wrong, asking the students to open their mouths up and down a little will bring a big change.

No.6 Finals "u" and "ü"
If the student cannot read "ü", the teacher can teach the student to read "i" first and then to slowly round his lips. The biggest difference between "ü" and "i" is whether lip is round or not. However, when the students get the "ü" right, they are often confused with the "u". At this time, the teacher needs to emphasize that the tip of the tongue is back when sending the "u" and the tip of the tongue is forward when sending the "ü", thus separating them. If the pronunciation is still not full, or “uo” and “ou” are not clearly separated, it is necessary to stress lip puckering, then the right "u" and "ü" come out.

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What the Pronunciation Difficulties for Foreigners to Learn Chinese Are