- "a" - cat, fan
- "au" - laugh, aunt
- "ai" - plaid
These are both front vowels. However, /æ/ is a low, tense vowel and /ɛ/ is a mid, lax vowel. When you pronounce /æ/, your tongue should be lower than when you pronounce /ɛ/.
2. A. fad, B. fed
3. A. past, B. pest
4. A. jam, B. gem
5. A. batter, B. better
6. A. expand, B. expend
Now, compare /æ/ with /ɑ/:
These are both low, tense vowels. However, /æ/ is a front vowel, and /ɑ/ is a central vowel. When you pronounce /æ/, your tongue should be near the front of your mouth and your lips should be spread wide.
You can hear the difference between /æ/ and /ɑ/ in these words.
2. A. cap, B. cop
3. A. math, B. moth
4. A. band, B. bond
5. A. jab, B. job
6. A. lagged, B. logged
Now, practice /æ/ in sentences. Say the words first, then the sentences.
She had a bad accident on Saturday
2. saxophone - jazz - band
He plays saxophone for a jazz band
3. family - travel - California
My family is travelling to California.
4. absent - class - last
You were absent from class last week.
5. example - bad - habit
Can you give me an example of a bad habit?
6. haven't - had - chance - answer
I haven't had a chance to answer your e-mail.
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