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The Ayin is similar to the Aleph. By itself, it has not sound. It (like the Aleph) depends on an accompanying vowel.
Written Hebrew in Israel leaves out the Nikkud (vowel symbols). The word in context indicates how a letter should be pronounced. Also, modern Hebrew has many words which are not in the Torah/Tanakh, such as telephone. Hebrew script (cursive) is used widely throughout Israel, though it is not covered in these lessons.