I searched a lot but I couldn't find anything.

Does 'a' sounds /æ/?    Or   Does 'b' sounds /bə/?

If you want to teach kids the letter 'a' would you say:

The picture of this sound is this => 'a'

It's name is /eɪ/ and it sounds /æ/ like apple

It could also sound it's name like Bake

-- My questions:

Is the way above correct for teaching? I mean does 'a' sound /æ/ by default?

Is there a complete list on internet? for example 'w' sound /wə/

  • Often, English letters make sounds in groups rather than as single letters. These may be called "phonograms." – herisson Oct 12 '16 at 11:04
  • As a very, very, very general guideline, <a> /ə/ when unstressed, /æ/ when stressed and followed by two or more consonants in spelling (or one consonant at the word's end), and /eɪ/ when stressed and followed by one consonant then a vowel. – J. Siebeneichler Oct 12 '16 at 14:38
  • For teaching children the alphabet, there are many books, flash cards, videos and such that have exactly the kind of information you describe; A is for apple is indeed probably the most universal example across all of these (it's not totally universal, since it doesn't necessarily fit the theme/rhyme etc.). You could look at some of these to get ideas for teaching. Just remember that, as suggested in the answer below, these simplified versions for kids and babies won't fully represent the ways the 26 letters of the alphabet are actually used in (adult) English. – 1006a Oct 12 '16 at 19:16

It’s really the other way around. Depending on dialect, and how you count, English has up to 27 different vowel sounds (phonemes), but only 5–6 letters to represent them (sometimes alone, sometimes in combination). Similarly, there are 24 consonant sounds, but only 21 letters to represent them.

What this means is that any given letter may be pronounced in multiple ways, depending on the word or context. For example, the letter A represents different sounds in the words TRAP, BATH, PALM, FACE, START, and SQUARE (though some will be the same, depending on dialect).

The closest thing to what you are looking for is probably the “spelling-to-sound correspondences” section of the Wikipedia article on English orthography. The article on English phonology may also be helpful.

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