El alfabeto

El alfabeto
Coffee is an important export for many
Central and South American countries. For
extra credit, learn more about the industry
and/or investigate the movement for Fair
Trade coffee from Latin America.
Las vocales
I *
- ah
- ey
- ee
- oo
*These ones are often
confusing to English speakers
because Spanish E sounds like
English A, and Spanish I sounds
like English E. Devote some
time to distinguishing these for
B - be
 B and V make an almost identical sound in
Spanish, so to distinguish them, you might
hear “B grande” or “B como burro”
C - ce
 C may make a hard or a soft sound.
– When followed by a consonant or the vowels: a, o
& u, C will make a hard “kuh” sound.
– When followed by the vowels: e & i, C will make a
soft “suh” sound
 Cebra
 Cuaderno
 Campo
Ch - che
 Che has been removed from alphabetized
lists (like in dictionaries) but still is recognized
as a letter by many people. It is kind of like
Pluto… no longer a planet, but it’s still there.
 Mochila
 Chiapas
 Champiñones
D - de
 D makes a strong “duh” sound unless it is
in between two vowels. If that is the case,
it makes a “th” sound.
F - efe
 There is no “ph” spelling combination in
Spanish, we just use F instead.
G - ge
 G may make a hard or a soft sound.
– When followed by consonants or the vowels: a, o
& u, G will make a hard “guh” sound.
– When followed by the vowels: e & i, G will make a
soft “huh” sound.
 Geografía
 Lago
 Imaginación
H - hache
 The H is silent! ¡La hache es muda!
J - jota
 The J makes what we think of as an H
K - ka
 K is a borrowed letter, so you will only see
it in words that originate from another
 Karate
 Kiosko
 Karaoke
L - ele
 Lápiz
 Laboratorio
 Libro
LL - elle
 LL makes a Y sound, or depending on
one’s accent is can even sound like a
“Juh” or a “Shuh”
 Llamar
 Silla
 Pollo
M - eme
 Mercado
 Matrimonio
 Mano
N - ene
 Nuevo
 Natalia
 Nadar
Ñ - eñe
 Ñ makes the sound you will recognize
from piñata. Words in English that sound
this way are “onion” and “canyon”
 Ojo
 Pulpo
 Ocatvio
P - pe
 Página
 Policía
 Pato
Q - qu
 ¿Qué?
 Queso
 Don Quixote
R - ere
 You will roll your R if the word begins with this
letter. Otherwise, you make the sound by just
a quick press of your tongue against the
gums slightly above the back of your front
 Raúl
 Pero
 Para
RR - erre
 Also known as doble ere; however, it is not
technically a letter. You roll the double R.
S - ese
 Sí
 Espectacular
 Especial
T - te
 Tigre
 Tío
 Toronja
 Uruguay
 Mundo
 Estados Unidos
V - ve
 As you know, B and V make extremely
similar sounds. V is known as “v chica” or
“v como vaca”
 Vivir
 Veinte
 Volumen
W – doble u/v
 Like K, this is another borrowed letter. It
works just like the English W.
 Washington
 Windsurfista
 Waterpolista
X - equis
 Equis makes a “k-s” sound
 Examen
 Excelente
 Experiencia
Y – i griega
 Y makes our usual Y sound, just the the
LL. Also, like the double L, is may sound
like a “juh” or a “shuh” depending on one’s
 Playa
 Yo
 Yema
Z - zeta
 Z makes an S sound. Not a ZZZZZ!
 Feroz
 Zapatos
 Zorro
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wu54D1
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MhYKu

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