Sounds in English like:

a in father

b in book, bag

v in vase, visitor

g in get, good

d in dot, duck

ye in yes, yesterday

yo in York, yonder

zh in pleasure

z in zone, zoo

i in bit, street

y in boy, toy

k in key, kiss

l in hill, lane

m in man, moon

n in nose, note

o in ball, born

p in peace, pin

r in rabbit

s in small, sit

t in table, tennis

u in moon, boot

f in fine, funny

h in hook, loch

ts in gets, cats

ch chair, chicken

sh in shop, ship

shch fresh cheese, Spanish sherry

no sound (hard sign tiny pause)

y in syllable, i ill

no sound (soft sign adds soft y to preceding consonant)

a in arrow, e leg

u in use, universe

ya in yard (but shorter)


The appearance of letters change significantly in cursive writing!




In comparison with English:

o       there are some letters in Russian that look and sound the same as in English, we call them true friends. They are: , , , , , ;

o       there are the letters that look the same as in English but in Russian they sound quite different, they are your false friends: , , , , y, , . They correspond to English v, n, r, s, ch in loch, u and the soft sign looks like the small b ;

o       there are also your new friends: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .



On the whole, the spelling of Russian words coincides with their pronunciation. This makes reading and writing much easier than in English. But you should keep in mind that:

There is a letter (soft sign) that doesnt denote any sound, but indicates the softening of a preceding consonant.


The hard sign (hard sign) occurs after the prefixes ending in any consonant when the root of the word starts with the vowels , Ħ, , . In these cases the consonant in the prefix is pronounced as a hard sound.






Very often there is no sense in tongue twisters. It is a play of words that helps to practice pronunciation.


. There are bells round the pole.


, There is grass in the yard,

. there is firewood on the grass.


-, Lena was eating slowly,

. Lena was eating so because of laziness.


Girls were giggling

-- --. he-he-he and ha-ha-ha.


, Mother was washing Mila with soap,

. Mila didnt like soap.


, Mice dried ring-shaped rolls.

. Mice invited cats.