Did you know there are at least 20 different ways of pronouncing the sound ‘r’? In North American English, we pronounce it very clearly with the tongue tip raised, curled back, and never touching the roof of the mouth. Try it!
Different cultures and languages pronounce ‘r’ in many different ways. For example, ‘r’ can be rolled by vibrating the tongue on the roof of the mouth as in Spanish, eliminated as in British English by saying‘ca_’, instead of car.
If you’re North American, or you’re doing business with North Americans, it would be advantageous to learn how to pronounce ‘r’ the way we do so that people can understand you the first time you speak.
Here’s a tip to pronounce ‘r’. Try not to open your mouth too wide when producing the sound. You can even practice ‘r’ with your teeth a little bit closed. This will force the muscles that produce ‘r’ to behave in the right way for “r”. Be careful not to vibrate the tip of the tongue against the top of the mouth, to get a really good sound.
Be sure to check out the video of this blog so that you can see and hear the sound.