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How to Speak Casual English: Reduction with T and Y

When a word ends in T and the next word begins with Y, we often combine these sounds into "ch." This happens with everyday words like "what," "thought," "about" and "that" when the word "you" or "your" follows. Americans do this naturally, without thinking about it. It is not considered slang unless a person makes a very strong, humorous "ch" sound. Most of the time, there is just a regular "ch."

In these sentences, the T sound reductions are also shown. Review T sounds. You will also notice that "your" or "you're" reduce to "yr." Review reductions with conjunctions and small words. A few sentences with D and Y are at the bottom.

Use the sentences below to practice reducing these words. Then try this practice conversation. Review rules of casual speech.


Written English     

Spoken English

What about you?

How about you?

I thought you were leaving early.
I tho'choo were leaving early.

We thought you were busy today.
We tho'choo were busy today.

It's not what you think.
It's not wha'choo think.

I don't understand what you want.
I don' understand wha'choo want.

I know that you're tired.
I know tha'chr tired.

This is just what you need.
This is just wha'choo need.

I didn't know that you were unhappy.
I didn'no tha'choo were unhappy.

I know it's not the job that you wanted, but it's good that you were hired!
I know it's not the job tha'choo wanned, bud'it's good tha'choo were hired!

I want you to know that I appreciate your work.
I wan'choo d' know thad'I apprecia'chr work.*

You need to get your work done.
You need t'ge'chr work done.

I need your advice.**
I nee'jr advice.

I told you to clean the kitchen.
I tol'joo t'clean the kitchen.

We told you that the deadline is today!
We tol'joo that the deadline is today!

* In this sentence, "to" is reduced and because the T is between vowels, it becomes a D sound.
** The last three sentences have a final D and then a Y. For this reduction, use a J sound. Just as D is softer than T, J is softer than CH.

Get more practice with this conversation using T and Y sounds.

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