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English Pronunciation: Sounds with N

An "-ing" ending is used regularly in central, northern and western areas. "Ing" is considered professional speech. Americans use "in" regularly (instead of -ing) if they live in the south--this ending is part of the southern dialect. People outside of the south may use "in" for informal speech, especially young people. In this case, a person may say "ing" sometimes and "in" at other times depending on the situation.

"Ing" is pronounced lightly. The "g" is silent, but indicates a nasal ending. This ending is created by pressing the back of the tongue against the top of the mouth which causes air to go into the nose. If you struggle with the nasal ending, think of "ing" as "eeng." Forming a long E helps some students pronounce "ing." With nasal sounds, you can actually feel the sound in your nose if you think about it.

For the "NK" sound, the back of the tongue presses and releases. For "NG," the back of the tongue presses and remains there.
 


Watch a video.

in'
-ing
Notes on "in" and "ing"
N
NK
NG
happenin'
happening
See note 1
thin
think
thing
plannin'
planning

fin
fink
fling
farmin'
farming

win
wink
wing
startin'
starting
See note 4
ban
bank
bang
standin'
standing

bin
blink
bing
laughin'
laughing

sin
sink
sing
callin'
calling
See note 2
rinse
rinks
rings
drawin'
drawing
See note 3
ran
rank
rang
fallin'
falling
See note 2
hand
hang
hank
partin'
parting
See note 4
hun
hunk
hung
talkin'
talking

min
mink
ming
walkin'
walking

din
dink
ding
wantin'
wanting
See note 4:
 also notice that "wanting"
will reduce to "wanning."
dan
dank
dang
watchin'
watching

sand
sank
sang
developin'
developing

lin
link
-ling
endin'
ending
can be either noun or verb
land
lanky
langely
gettin'
getting
See note 4
stint
stink
sting
helpin'
helping

sprint
sprinkle
spring
interestin'
interesting
note that this can be
pronounced "inner" for all
3 words
clan
clank
clang
buildin'
building
can be either noun or verb tan
tank
tang

Note 1: in this case, "happenin'" and "happening are idioms

which mean that something interesting or popular is going on

Note 2: L near N may require some practice--make sure to pronounce both sounds

Note 3: remember that "aw" sounds like "ah"--W is completely silent

Note 4: with T before N, some people will use more reduction, as in "Par-N." Also, the T between vowels will reduce to the light D, as in "PAR-ding." Use all the T sound rules as needed.




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