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Learn the Czech Alphabet from A to Z!

Learning to speak a new language is exciting; learning to write a new language is even more exciting! It will open new worlds for you. So, dig into these tips and advice for learning how to master the Czech alphabet easily - at CzechClass101 we make it easy, fun and relevant for you!

Starting anything from scratch can be challenging, especially if you learn how to write in a language completely different from your own. It is really like navigating through a territory that is completely unknown to you.

However, this need not be a big hurdle or a problem! At CzechClass101, we introduce you to Czech writing in simple, easy-to-follow steps, and you can ask for advice or help anywhere along the way. It is important to master the Czech alphabet completely from the start.

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Introduction to Czech Writing

Introduction

Czech is mainly spoken by over ten million people in the Czech Republic (96% of the total population) and over 1.5 million abroad. A large number of these Czech speakers are based in the United States, Canada, Australia and in European countries, including Germany, Austria, Poland, Slovakia, and the Ukraine.

The current Czech language uses the Latin alphabet with specific diacritics as part of its writing system. Its basic principles are “one sound, one letter.” Czech consists of twenty-six Latin letters as in English plus letters with special diacritic accents. There are three types of those accents: the acute accent čárka (length mark) for indicating the length of vowels, háček (hook) for changing sound, and lastly kroužek (circle) indicating long pronunciation of the letter u only ů. Altogether, the alphabet includes forty-two characters. Once you learn the pronunciation of the whole alphabet, you can read any word in Czech. Every word is pronounced exactly how it is written. We will see the details below.

Czech Alphabet Chart

Alphabet

The Czech alphabet is easy to learn because it uses the same alphabet as English, plus some more letters with diacritics.

The Czech alphabet consists of 42 letters, inclusive of 26 letters as in English and 16 additional ones with diacritics. The letters Q and W are used in foreign words only, and are replaced with KV and V once the word becomes “naturalized.”

There are three special diacritic accents: for the vowels it is the acute accent (čárka) and a small circle (kroužek) both indicating the length of vowels, and then a small hook (háček) that changes the pronunciation of the consonant letters a bit.

Upper Case

Lower Case

Pronunciation

A

a

a is pronounced like [a] in "But."

Á

á

á is pronounced like [ a ] in "Father"

B

b

b is pronounced like [b] in "Big."

C

c

c is pronounced like in "Streets."

Č

č

č is pronounced like in "Czech."

D

d

d is pronounced like [d] in "Dog" but a harder sound

Ď

ď

ď is pronounced like in "Duke" but softer. The tip of the tongue needs to be placed against the back of the upper gum and above the front teeth.

E

e

e is pronounced like [e] in "Met."

É

é

é is pronounced like [ e ] in "Shed," but longer

Ě

ě

ě is pronounced like [y+e] in "Yes."

F

f

f is pronounced like [f] in "Farm."

G

g

g is pronounced like [g] in "Grow" (not like in general!)

H

h

h is pronounced like [h] in "Hard" (no aspiration)

Ch

ch

ch is pronounced like [j] in the Spanish name "José"

I

i

i is also pronounced like [i] in "Sit."

Í

í

í is pronounced like  [ i ] in "Cheep."

J

j

j is pronounced like in "Yard."

K

k

k is pronounced like [k] in "King" (no aspiration)

L

l

l is pronounced like [l] in "Lonely."

M

m

m is pronounced like [m] in "Morning."

N

n

n is pronounced like [n] in "Norway"

Ň

ň

ň is pronounced like in "New" but softer. The tip of the tongue needs to be placed against the back of the upper gum and above the front teeth.

O

o

o is pronounced like [o] in "Omit."

Ó

ó

ó is pronounced like [ o ] in "Fall."

P

p

P is pronounced like [p] in "Push" (no aspiration)

Q

q

Q like [q] in "Quick" (found in foreign loan words)

R

r

r is pronounced like [r] in "Truck" but more trilled (the tongue vibrates as the r rolls off the tongue)

Ř

ř

ř is pronounced by pressing the tip of the tongue on the palate, while the rest of the tongue is free to vibrate.

S

s

S is pronounced like [s] in "Similar."

Š

š

š is pronounced like in "Short."

T

t

t is pronounced like [t] in "Table" but a harder "t" sound

Ť

ť

ť is pronounced like in "Tutor" but softer. The tip of the tongue needs to be placed against the back of the upper gum and above the front teeth.

U

u

u is pronounced like [u] in "Look."

Ú

ú

ú is pronounced like [ u ] in "School" but longer. The vowels ú / ů are also pronounced the same way, although the spelling is different.

Ů

ů

ů is pronounced like [ u ] in "School" but longer. The vowels ú / ů are also pronounced the same way, although the spelling is different.

V

v

V is pronounced like [v] in "Victim."

W

w

W is pronounced like [v] in "Victim." (found in foreign loan words)

X

x

X like [x] in "Complex" (found in foreign loan words)

Y

y

y is also pronounced like [i] in "Sit."

Ý

ý

ý is pronounced like  [ i ] in "Cheep."

Z

z

Z is pronounced like [z] in "Zoo."

Ž

ž

ž is pronounced like in "Version."

á, é, í, ý, ó, ú, ů

These seven extra vowels are for sounds not found in the English alphabet by default. You can recognize them by the acute accent (čárka) indicating a slightly longer length of vowels. However, for historical reasons there is also another diacritical mark: the kroužek, or a little circle above the long ů. Basically there is no difference in pronunciation between ú and ů.

ž, š, č, ř, ď, ť, ň, ě

These 8 consonants are also not included in English alphabet although the sounds of them are sometimes similar to English. The small hook (háček) is a mark which usually makes the pronunciation of the letter a bit softer in a specific way.

Ch

The Czech alphabet has one special letter Ch which is made by C and H put together. However, the pronunciation is different from English.

Why is Learning the Czech Alphabet Important?

AlphabetA language’s alphabet is its building blocks. Trying to learn how to write in Czech without first learning its alphabet is a bit like trying to build a brick house without touching the individual bricks! It is impossible to do a good job that way. So don’t believe language schools and methods that try to teach you otherwise. You will regret it later.

Also, once you start recognizing symbols and words, you will be encouraged by your own progress and motivated to learn even faster. Even just learning the basics of the alphabet will allow you to start recognizing simple Czech words, and it will feel great!

Furthermore, knowing the alphabet even helps with pronunciation, as learning the individual letters of any language will start uncovering nuances and intricacies that are not always apparent when you’re simply listening to the words.

Completely mastering the Czech alphabet, no matter how long it takes, will give you an excellent head start in learning how to write and read the language. It will offer you a solid foundation on which to build the other language skills, so set a goal to learn the alphabet so well that you’re able to recite it in your sleep!

Read on for helpful tips and secrets to learning the Czech alphabet quickly and effectively.

How to Download Your Free Guide to Beginner Czech

Download Your FREE Guide to Beginner Czech!

If you want to master the Czech language and become fluent, get this Czech eBook!
You need physical worksheets to practice on.

This eBook is a MUST-HAVE for all Czech learning beginners!

FREE Czech eBook

Download your FREE Czech practice sheets PDF today and learn the Czech language in no time!
This is a must-have guide for absolute beginners

Log in with Your Free Lifetime Account and we’ll give you a bundle of PDF cheat sheet including Survival Phrases, Romantic Lines, Learning Tips… — absolutely FREE!

3 Reasons to Learn Czech Through PDF Lessons

Let’s now take a closer look at how studying Czech lessons in PDF format can help you reach your dream in up to half the time of normal video or audio lessons!

① Saves Minutes on Your Data Plan

Learning Czech through PDF lessons can dramatically reduce your data use. Once a lesson or tool is downloaded, you can then access it offline via your computer or smartphone any time or place regardless of Internet access. And once you’ve download the Czech lessons in PDF format, you can actually access them faster than logging in and trying to do so via a live site. So not only will learning Czech using PDF lessons save minutes on your data plan—it will save you some significant time as well as the lessons add up!

② Print and Take All Czech Lessons and PDF Tools With You Anywhere

Sometimes, a tiny smartphone screen just isn’t adequate, especially when you are trying to learn something new. The great thing about PDF lessons, tools or files is that they can be quickly printed and taken anywhere after you download them. In fact, printing out Czech lessons in PDF format can actually save you time when compared to going through the material on a smartphone with a small screen—even with the extra printing time!

③ Great Study Tool to Boost Retention and Mastery

Studying video or audio lessons online is a great way to learn a language because students can play and rewind sections as many times as needed until the lesson is mastered. But when you review the same Czech lessons again in PDF format, an incredible thing happens: your retention dramatically improves! Thanks to Time Spaced Repetition, seeing the information again in written format helps reinforce the information in your mind and improves both retention and recall. The benefits of learning Czech using PDF lessons quickly add up to significant time savings for you, your data plan, and your dream of learning a new language!

Why are we giving it away?

Learning to read and write is a must for all beginners. Although you get video lessons on how to write in Czech at CzechClass101, you’ll still need physical worksheets to practice on. That’s why you’re getting this printable tutorial PDFs as a gift.

Secrets to Learning the Czech Alphabet Fast

SecretWith a language, like with anything you have to learn from scratch, having a few mnemonic devices handy are key to learning it fast. A mnemonic device is basically any method or technique that helps you to retain or commit something to memory more easily.

Here are a few mnemonic devices to memorize the Czech alphabet so you can speed up learning how to write in Czech.

① Find and Learn an Alphabet Song or Poem in Czech

Can you still remember your childhood alphabet song in your own language? The best way to commit it to memory so you can recite it is still your mom or first teacher’s way - with music, a song and/or a poem! Find a recording and learn to sing the song, or recite the poem along as best as you can. Ask your CzechClass101 teacher to help you understand exactly what you are singing or saying, and soon you’ll have reciting the alphabet under your belt! Repeat it out loud as often as possible.

However, you still need to learn how to write it.

② Study a Few Letters At a Time

Remember when you were young and learning to write for the first time? You didn’t start with words or sentences; you started with letters, one at a time!

Decide on tackling only a few letters each week, and then don’t move on from these till you are completely familiar with them. Don’t take on too many at once, or you may become discouraged. Also, remember to ask your teacher at CzechClass101 if you have questions!

Learn to incidentally spot the letters in books, road signs (If you’re living in the country), magazines, on TV, anywhere you encounter written Czech. Remember to write them out!

③ Write Out the Letters of the Alphabet By Hand

Make it a goal to write out your week’s letters at least once a day, and commit to this goal. You can also do it every time you have a free moment. Get yourself a special notebook for this purpose that you can carry with you anywhere you go. Sitting on the train or bus? Waiting for someone somewhere? Whip out your notebook and write the Czech alphabet, or the letters you are learning. Aim for about 20 repetitions, while silently saying the letter in your head as you write it out. This way, you will soon be able to form and write words all by yourself! Exciting, isn’t it?

Writing something down with a pen also seems to engrave it in the brain in a way that nothing else does. As an added benefit, it gives you the satisfaction of seeing a new language in your own writing!

Once you’ve mastered the whole alphabet, commit to writing it out in its entirety at least once a day, for at least one month. More repetitions are obviously better.

④ Involve Your Whole Body

Research has shown that the more senses and actions we use to learn something, the quicker the new information sticks in the memory and becomes habitual. To apply this principle while learning the Czech alphabet, write out huge letters by tracing them in the soil, or with chalk on the floor. Now, while saying the letter out loud, walk on the lines you have just traced. In this way, you ‘write’ the letter by moving your whole body!

Having fun just makes it even easier to learn something, so why not ‘write’ the letters out with dance steps while moving to your favorite Czech music!

This is a simple trick that seems silly, but you’ll be surprised how quickly you will commit intricate letters to memory this way. It really works!

⑤ Use Associations To Memorize Letters

This technique would involve saying the Czech letter out loud, and then thinking of a word in your own language that sounds the same as the letter. That would then create a phonic association that should make it easier for you to remember the letter. Better even if the association is something you can draw or picture.

If the script of the new alphabet is very different from your own, look at it closely, and see if you can find an image that the letter reminds you of

⑥ Now Have Fun Trying To Write Words!

Try to write words from your own language in Czech, and ask your friendly CzechClass101 teachers for feedback! Or post them on the forum and see if anyone can read them. You will be so pleased with yourself when you start writing words that are readable and recognizable by native speakers.

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How to Introduce Yourself in Czech
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How good is your Czech? Care to put it to the test? Here’s the deal! We’ve come up with this must-know Czech Phrases List. Learn the top 25 Czech phrases, hear the native pronunciation and put your Czech to the test. Did you know them all? If not, review the list and master these easy phrases!
How to Say Thank You in Czech
Has anyone thanked you today? We will. Thank you for reading this article and learning with us! In fact, today, you’ll learn the many different ways to say “Thank You” in Czech. It’s one of the most important Czech phrases. Check it out and watch the video too to practice your pronunciation.

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