Master Chinese “j q x” and “zh ch sh” | Pronunciation Training


Hi, Welcome back to my channel. I’m Grace. Last time I talked about how to pronounce “zh ch sh r” these Chinese consonants. And today I’m going to teach you how to pronounce “j q x” correctly. I’ll tell you about their tongue positions and the differences between them. Plus, I will compare “j q x” with “zh ch sh”, which will help you distinguish these sounds. Let’s go. let’s start with the easiest one: “X ㄒ” Btw I’ll add Zhuyin, which is the phonetic symbol we use in Taiwan, next to the pinyin. OK, same as last time, let’s look at the IPA first. If this is your first time watching my videos, you might not know what IPA is. So if you’re wondering about this, you can take a look at my previous video. I put it here. Ok the IPA of “X ㄒ” is this one this symbol represents a tongue position like this. the first thing you need to do is put the tip of your tongue down behind the bottom of your teeth. and then move the front part of your tongue towards the position pointed out here. More specifically, this position is before the palate and after the alveolar. So move the front part of your tongue towards here, but remember do not touch it. just like the picture shows. and also you have to pay attention to your lips, your lips should spread wide like you’re smiling. and then let the air out. X Ok practice with me: X X X OK, next one, “j ㄐ” The IPA of “j” is this / tɕ /. Now, you can recognize / ɕ / this symbol. it means that “j” and “x” both have the same tongue position. so when you want to make the “j” sound, you can put your tongue in the same position as “X”, like this picture shows, also your lips should spread wide. The difference between “j” and “x” is that, as you can see, there is an extra symbol “t” here, it means that to pronounce this “j” sound, You need to block the air in your mouth first. So here is the way to block the air: You let the front part of your tongue stick to the position I pointed out, and then let the air go through your mouth. At this moment because your tongue is blocking the way, the air can not go out. like this. Then the next thing you need to do is let the front part of your tongue go down a bit and let the air out to say. “j” ok, let’s practice: j j j The final one is “q ㄑ” This one is pretty similar with the previous sound “j”. So, in order to tell the difference between them, let’s take a look at their IPA first. They both have this and this, meaning their tongue positions are exactly the same and to pronounce them, you have to block the air first. And you might notice that the only difference is that “q” has an extra symbol “h”. This small “h” means that when you pronounce this sound, you need to exhale more strongly. Everything else is just the same as “j” OK, let’s practice: q q q After learning how to make these sounds, let’s figure out the differences between “j q x” and “zh ch sh”. if you haven’t watch my previous video about “zh ch sh r” yet, I suggest you go through it first. Because after watching that, it’ll be more easy to understand what I’m about to say. OK, let’s get into it. Generally speaking, the tongue positions of these two sound groups are different. When pronouncing “zh ch sh” you should curl the tip of your tongue to the position pointed out in the picture. on the other hand when you pronounce “j q x” the tip of your tongue is behind the bottom of your teeth. Like this. let’s practice to distinguish “zh” and “j”, “ch” and “q”, “sh” and “x” together. First, let’s start with “zh” and “j”. It can take you a little time to think about their tongue positions and the differences between them. ok? Now, practice with me. 執行 to implement 機型 models 日誌 journal 日記 diary remember that although these two sounds have different tongue positions, you have to block the air in your mouth first for both of them. Next, let’s practice “ch” and “q”. 遲到 to be late 騎到 ride to 雞翅 chicken wings 機器 machine when pronouncing these two sounds, remember to exhale more strongly than with “zh” and “j”. the last one is “sh” and “x”. ok, think about their positions first. when pronouncing these two sounds, you don’t have to block the air, you just put your tongue at the right position, and then let the air out. Let’s practice: 潮濕 humid 朝西 towards west 演示 to demonstrate 演戲 acting OK, this is today’s lesson. if you just started learning Chinese, it will definitely take you some time to get used to these tongue positions. just keep on practicing, you will pronounce them well eventually. And if you want to get the information of this lesson, you can go to my Instagram and find the handout. I’ll see you next time, bye!

10 Replies to “Master Chinese “j q x” and “zh ch sh” | Pronunciation Training”

  1. Hope you enjoy today’s video!
    If you have any suggestion or any idea that you want me to talk about, please leave a comment below 🙂

  2. What a usaeful video!!! I´m from Spain and it´s great to find material for learning pronunciation that dont depend on analogies with english pronunciation
    You won one subscriptor and one upvote, thank you very much

  3. This is really helpful for my pronunciation. It’s also made me realise how bad my ear is. I find it really hard to hear this difference between some of those sounds.

    If you ever need ideas for content, it would be helpful if you could do a video where you say different words with the sounds from this and the last video, then show the viewer what the sound was. It’d be a bit like aural flash cards.

    Thanks for your work!

  4. Thank you so much! This was the most helpful video I saw on YouTube about this subject. A big thank you from Spain 🙂

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