P and B minimal pairs
Here are some useful resources for the P and B minimal pairs. There are 32 free flashcards with pictures to print, a minimal pairs P and B word list, and some practice sentences.
The words here are minimal pairs because they differ by only 1 sound(P or B). In the pairs here, the difference is either at the start of the word (initial sound) or at the end (final sound).
How to pronounce the P sound
The P sound is unvoiced meaning that it does not come from your throat. There should be no buzzing or vibration at all in your throat when you make this sound.
To make the P sound, close your lips tightly. Next, push air to the front of your mouth and suddenly release it by opening your mouth.
How to pronounce the B sound
To make the B sound you use a similar technique to the P sound above. The difference is that it is voiced. The sound should come from your throat. You should feel a slight buzzing in your vocal cords as you make the B.
Don’t release the air in your mouth as suddenly as the P sound. You will notice that the B is also a bit quieter than the B.
P and B minimal pairs pictures
There are 4 sheets of flashcards to be cut out. The first one is above and the other three are below. Each sheet has 2 sets of minimal pairs and can be used individually. You don’t have to print them all.
You can use the cards for rote pronunciation practice and language learning activities such as matching and memory games.
The minimal pairs picture cards have the following words –
Sheet 1 – peach – beach, pig – big, pear – bear, pole – bowl.
Sheet 2 – peak – beak, park – bark, pin – bin, push bush.
Sheet 3 – pea – bee, pull – bull, pug, bug, pike – bike.
Sheet 4 – cup – cub, cap – cab, tap – tab, rope – robe.
P and B minimal pairs list (initial sound)
|pa - bar||pace – base||pack - back||panned – band|
|park - bark||pat - bat||path – bath||pawed - board|
|pay - bay||pea – bee||peach - beach||peak - beak|
|pear – bear||peat - beat||peep - beep||peg - beg|
|pelt – belt||pent – bent||pest - best||pet – bet|
|pier - beer||pig - big||pike - bike||pill – bill|
|pillion - billion||pin – bin||pit – bit||plank - blank|
|planned – bland||plaster - blaster||played – blade||plays – blaze|
|plead – bleed||plight - blight||plot – blot||plume - bloom|
|pole – bowl||pond - bond||poor – boar||pop - bop|
|port – bought||post - boast||pouring - boring||pounce – bounce|
|pout - bout||praise – braise||prawn - brawn||pressed – breast|
|prick - brick||pride – bride||puff - buff||pug - bug|
|pull – bull||pup – pub||purr – burr||push - bush|
|putt – but||putter butter|
P and B minimal pairs list (final sound)
|cap – cab||cop - cob||cup – cub||fop - fob|
|gap – gab||lap – lab||loop - lube||lope - lobe|
|mop - mob||rip - rib||rope – robe||slap - slab|
|slop – slob||sop – sob||swap - swab||tap – tab|
|tripe - tribe|
Here are some simple sentences for practising the P and B sounds together.
Put the pin in the bin.
The tribe eats tripe.
A robe on a rope.
She drank beer on the pier.
The bears eat pears.
They bought a port.
There is a bath on the path.
He rakes bark in the park.
That’s a big pig.
They bop to pop.
For more minimal pairs with different sounds, check out the pronunciation section of ESL Vault.