Pronouncing the Regular Past Ending “ed”

Forming the past tense of regular verbs is simple, right?  We just add the letters “ed” to the end of the base form of the verb.  However, how we say the “ed ” ending on the verb changes.  There are actually three different sounds that we use to say the same “ed” ending!  Here are three simple rules to help:

#1  When the base form (infinitive) of the verb ends in the letter “t” or “d”, we say the “ed” ending like “id” and this adds another syllable to the verb.

Want Wanted [want-id]
Start Started [start-id]
Need Needed [need-id]
Sound Sounded [sound-id]

#2 When the base form (infinitive) of the verb ends in a consonant that is not voiced (p, k, f, x, ss, sh, ch), we say the “ed” ending like “t”.

help helped [helpt]
ask asked [askt]
talk talked [talkt]
look looked [lookt]

#3 When the base form (infinitive) of the verb ends in a consonant that is voiced (all other ending sounds), we say the “ed” ending like “d”.

call called [calld]
play played [playd]
learn learned [learnd]
open opened [opend]

Use this link to hear a lesson on the pronunciation of the regular past tense “ed” endings:

http://www.englishclub.com/pronunciation/-ed.htm

Use this link to complete an online exercise using the three different way to pronounce “ed’:

http://www.englishexercises.org/makeagame/viewgame.asp?id=5835

 

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