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Teaching Spanish pronunciation
Teaching Spanish pronunciation

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1.4 Spanish stops

Table 1 Spanish stops
Phoneme Allophone Orthography Articulation Context
/p/ [p] voiceless bilabial stop all 
/t/ [t] voiceless dental stop all
/k/ [k] ca/o/u, qu, k voiceless velar stop all
/b/ [b] b, v, (w) voiced bilabial stop initial position (after pause), after nasal
  [β] b, v, w  voiced bilabial approximant elsewhere
/d/ [d] d voiced dental stop initial position, after nasal and liquid
  [ð] d voiced interdental approximant elsewhere
/g/ [g] ga/o/u, gue, gui voiced velar stop initial position, after nasal
  [ɣ] ga/o/u, gue, gui voiced velar approximant elsewhere

Ideas for exercises

Depending on the level of your students, take a few sentences (or phrases) and ask your students to underline those occurrences of /b d g/ that are realised as approximants. For example, find all the [ɣ]’s in 

Gabriela le ha comprado unos guantes ingleses a Miguel.

Or, which allophones of /d/ occur in this sentence? 

Dora y Tadeo han tenido un día tremendo.