Tag: pronunciation

Pronunciation Practice: Within vs Without

Pronunciation Practice: Within vs Without

I’m doing something a little different here with the Pronunciation Practice videos: I’m actually giving you exercises to practice.

Just like any physical fitness program, you need to drill in the movement. You need to build the muscle memory. You need to have practiced the motion enough, so you can do it without thinking.

Most people don’t take their pronunciation this seriously, and guess what? They rarely improve.

Remember to put in the time and effort!


  • Be sure to touch the back of your teeth with your tongue when saying “within”
  • Don’t over-emphasize the “t” sound at the end of “without; focus on the vowel sound “ou”

If you’re interested in learning more conversational English like this, connect with Jon to sign up for online private English coaching or face-to-face sessions in Boston. We’ll work on making you sound like a native speaker.


English Lesson: How to say “Thank You”

English Lesson: How to say “Thank You”

“You don’t have to do anything, it’s the thought that counts.”

While that sentiment has a lot of heart, I think the truth is “the appearance of thought” is what really counts– especially in communication. You want more sway in your business relations? You want to have better personal relationships? Well, you better learn how to really show that you feel thankful.

And no, you don’t have to rattle off a thank you speech. Just the notion of being indebted can carry a lot of power.

Even if you don’t care to expand your communication skills to that level, you should still be able to express thanks in a meaningful way. Unfortunately, most English learners only know “Thank you very much”. But what they don’t realize is, if you stick with a textbook cookie-cutter phrase, you sound pretty heartless.

Add a little heart with these expressions:

  • Thanks a bunch.
  • Thank you, [name].
  • I really appreciate it.


How to Pronounce “People”

How to Pronounce “People”

Pronunciation Practice: “People”

Upon recommendation, I’m going to start archiving all the videos I’ve done on Instagram here. For the latest words, be sure to follow me on Instagram (@DoctorBlackJack)

If you found this helpful, don’t forget to check out the Pronunciation Practice Master List

Jon Dao – The Conversation Coach
Improving Your English Fluency