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Lesson Transcript

Zdrastvuite, Ya Svetlana! Welcome to Russianpod101.com’s Алфавит Made Easy!
The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn the Russian Cyrillic alphabet: the Алфавит!
In the last lesson we learned two letters: “А” and “К”. These letters are True Friends, meaning that they look and sound like their English counterparts. In this lesson we'll continue our study of the Russian alphabet by learning the three remaining True Friends. Ready to go? Well then, let’s get started!
In this lesson, we'll learn these three letters. Because these are True Friends, we know that they are going to look and sound like English letters!
Our first True Friend of the lesson is “М”! And yep, it makes an M sound! While some Russian letters do change their sound, “М” is always pronounced this way.
Notice how the upper and lowercase printed versions are identical except for size, unlike the English M. As we mentioned in the last lesson, you will see the print form on menus, packages, and maps so you better learn to read them!
Let’s write them now! Remember, we’re writing the printed forms just for practice. You won’t see the printed forms written like this in Russian. Here’s the uppercase M
And the lowercase m
Now that we've seen the printed forms of “М”, let's take a look at how to write it by hand.
The cursive uppercase М looks like this. It's much sharper than the English cursive but very easy to write.
Lowercase “m” is exactly the same as uppercase but just a little smaller. Also, when lowercase “М” comes after another letter, we add a small hook on the left. We'll cover this more when we practice writing some full words.
Now we’ll write them M
Uppercase “М” is a single stroke so you can connect easily to the next letter without lifting your pen or pencil.
That’s all there is to M! Let’s move on.
The second letter you’ll learn in this lesson is another True Friend, “О”. As you can guess, Russian “О” is the same as English “O” and in printed form it is almost identical. It is usually pronounced as “O” sometimes it sounds like “ah”. In later lessons I’ll tell you more about when and why the pronunciation changes.
Here’s how to write the printed versions О
And the lowercase o
It’s cursive time! If you know how to write a cursive O in English, this shouldn't be a problem for you.
“О” is a single stroke so you can connect easily to the next letter without lifting your pen or pencil.
As for the lowercase “O”, it’s exactly the same but slightly smaller.
Both the lower and uppercase versions connect to the next letter from the bottom.
Now let's finish up this lesson with our very last True Friend. Aw! :(
Our final True Friend is the letter “Т”. The Russian “T” acts just like the T in English. In the printed version, both the upper and lowercase letters look like uppercase English T’s, but with different sizes.
Here’s how to write the printed versions Т
And the lowercase t
As for the cursive versions... this one is a bit more difficult!
The uppercase version looks like this. As you can see, it’s not similar to the printed form or English cursive styles.
If you thought uppercase was difficult, well, sorry, lowercase “Т” is no easier. It looks a lot like a handwritten English M. If you get confused between the handwritten “Т” and “М” in Russian, just remember that “М” is pointy and sharp like mountains!
Once you practice writing these a few times they won’t seem so difficult.
“Т” consists of four separate strokes, and you pick up your pen before writing the next letter.
And the lowercase.
Well done! I think you’re ready to learn some new words. Can you read it?
It's pronounced “tam”.
This is the word for “there” in Russian. Now let's practice writing it.
We'll start with a “т”, move smoothly into the “а” and then finish it off with that mountainous ”м”. Remember how I said that “м” gets a little hook when it follows another letter? Well, here it is. Why do we have it? Many Russian cursive letters look similar so we have to use a hook before “м” to show that we are writing a new letter.
Getting tired yet? I think you can handle another new word! Can you read it?
[short pause] It's pronounced /kto/.
You just learned the word for “who” in Russian! Time to write it.
Let's start out with a “к”, transition to a nice rounded “т”, and finish it up with an “о”.
Let’s take it one step further. We're going to combine the last two words and write a very useful phrase “Кто там?” It means “Who's there?” You can use it when someone knocks on your door!
Кто там?
Start with кто, except with a capital K this time.
Now follow it up with “там”. Don't forget the hook! And of course we'll end the question with a question mark. It’s done!
Now it's time for Svetlana’s insights.
Be sure to add “Кто” and “там” to your notebook. We'll add new words in every lesson, and by the end of the series you will have a very useful collection of words that you wrote yourself!
Well, we met the last of our True Friends today, and that means we’ll be entering some slightly more sinister waters in the next lesson. But that also means you’ll be able to expand your vocabulary with more words, including the Russian word for “no.” We'll learn that and much more in the next lesson of Russianpod101.com’s Алфавит Made Easy!
Пока Пока