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How to pronounce ENVIRONMENT (there’s more than one way!)

Did you know there are three different ways you can pronounce the word ENVIRONMENT?

Watch today’s episode to find out the different ways, and choose the option that’s easiest for YOU!


Podcast intro:

Hey, welcome to the InFluency Podcast. I’m Hadar, and this is episode number 323. Today we’re gonna talk about the different pronunciations of the word ‘environment’.

Hey, welcome back, and thank you so much for tuning in for another episode. So today is a quick pronunciation lesson for you on how to pronounce, like I said, the word ‘environment’. But I also wanna tell you something about words that have different pronunciations or different variations. Because many words do, and a lot of times they end up being somewhat controversial.

I remember, about a year ago, I posted a video on ‘how to pronounce February’. And I posted the American pronunciation, which is without the original R – ‘Feb(y)uary’. And within a week or two, the video hit 1 million views, and not for a good reason. It was because people got so angry at me teaching it without the R, so it was wildly shared across the UK. And I found it to be so funny.

And then I started becoming a bit more cautious when posting videos about words that have several different pronunciations, feeling like I should be addressing it because otherwise I find that people get confused. But anyway, whenever there are a few pronunciations, you can always bet that I will share with you the one pronunciation that I think is the easiest. And usually those pronunciations have the least amount of sounds or tricky transitions. So you can bet that I have your back when it comes to easy pronunciation. Okay?

So that is the case with the word ‘environment’, there are four different pronunciations. I’m gonna be teaching three in this episode. And remember that the most important thing is that you choose what’s right for you. And the second most important thing is that you practice it, so that you don’t get stuck or you don’t become self-conscious next time you have to use the word ‘environment’. Oh, and always use it in context, okay? Always use it in context: put it in a sentence, say it a few times. After this episode, I want you to create a few sentences of your own with this word so it’s easier to remember. Okay. So that’s it. Let’s listen to today’s episode.

Video transcript:

So the first pronunciation is [ɪn.ˈvaɪ-rən-mənt]. This pronunciation is more aligned with the spelling. So let’s break it down. The first syllable is ‘ɪn’ (lax ɪ), and then an N – ‘ɪn’. Then ‘vaɪ’ – a V sound and the long ‘aɪ’ as in ‘my’, that’s also the primary stress. So this syllable is going to be longer, louder, and higher in pitch. ɪn.ˈvaɪ, and then rən – an R, a schwa, and an N: rən. ɪn.ˈvaɪ-rən, and then ‘mənt’ – an M, a schwa – which is a reduced vowel, NT: mənt. You can also pronounce it with a held T – mən’. ɪn.ˈvaɪ-rən-mənt. Say it again with me – ɪn.ˈvaɪ-rən-mənt.

The second pronunciation, and this is where it gets tricky, is this – ɪn-ˈvaɪ-ərn-mənt. So actually, the vowel shifts from after the R, this is what it seems like in the spelling, right, RON, so you think that there is a vowel after the R. But in fact what happens is that the vowel is actually pronounced before the R. Listen again – ɪn-ˈvaɪ-ərn-mənt.

I like to imagine as if there is a Y sound that connects the ‘vaɪ’ and the ‘ərn’ – ɪn-ˈvaɪ-(y)ərn-mənt. Now you’re probably confused because the spelling is not aligned with pronunciation, which is something that often happens in English. Think about it, even in this word, it’s not pronounced as ‘aɪ-rən’, but aɪ-ərn. Exactly the same pattern. Listen: aɪ-(y)ərn, ɪn-ˈvaɪ-(y)ərn. And then you end it the same way – ‘mənt’:. ɪn-ˈvaɪ-(y)ərn-mənt.

However, there is another way that makes it even easier to pronounce, and that is without the N. Listen: ɪn-ˈvaɪ-(y)ər-mənt. ɪn-ˈvaɪ-(y)ər-mənt.

All right. Now, choose the pronunciation that is the easiest for you. ɪn.ˈvaɪ-rən-mənt: “Become part of the environment around you”. ɪn-ˈvaɪ-(y)ərn-mənt: “They’re creating a welcoming environment”. Or ɪn-ˈvaɪ-(y)ər-mənt: “in the mediated environment”. And let’s practice it in sentences. I’m gonna use the third pronunciation.

‘I support organizations that preserve and protect the environment’.

‘Recycling is a simple and effective way to help the environment and reduce waste’.

‘To improve your English, you need to create the right environment for you to succeed’.

What other sentences with the word ‘environment’ can you think of? Write them down in the comments.

All right, that’s it. If you like this video, then hit ‘like’ and subscribe if you haven’t yet. And also, come and check out my website at hadarshemesh.com where I have a ton of free resources for you and a lot of how-to-pronounce videos. Also, you can follow me on Instagram and on TikTok, where I share daily content.

Have a beautiful, beautiful rest of the day. And I will see you next week in the next video. Bye.

The InFluency Podcast
The InFluency Podcast
323. How to pronounce ENVIRONMENT (there’s more than one way!)

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