s and sh minimal pairs cards 1

S and SH minimal pairs

S and Sh minimal Pairs

Minimal pairs are words that differ by 1 sound, these word pairs and picture cards are all different in that they use s or sh. For example, sip and ship are the same except for the initial consonant sounds of s and sh.

On this page, there are free printable picture cards, a minimal pair word list, and some useful sentences.

Pronunciation of the S and SH sounds

To make the S sound, the sides of your tongue should be touching your top teeth. The tip of your tongue should be forward, nearly touching the roof of your mouth. You shouldn’t use your voice or throat, let air pass over the tip of your tongue.

To make the SH sound use the S sound method above but bring your tongue back a little. Your tongue should also be flatter than when making the S sound.

Minimal pairs S and SH picture cards

These minimal pair s and sh picture printables can be used as flashcards or in other activities such as matching or card games. The words are provided under each picture but can be easily cut off if needed.

Each worksheet has 3 pairs or 6 words each. They are –

Sheet 1 – sack and shack, sell and shell, sip and ship.

Sheet 2 – sea and she, saw and shore, save and shave.

Sheet 3 – sour and shower, suit and shoot, sock and shock.

Sheet 4 – fist and fished, sign and shine, mess and mesh.

S and Sh minimal pairs list

Here a list of minimal pairs you may find useful for your pronunciation activities.

suit - shoot sign - shine sip - ship saw - shore
so - show sell - shell seal - she'll sock shock
Sue - shoe sigh - shy seat - sheet sour - shower
save - shave sack - shack mess - mesh fist - fished
same - shame self - shelf rust - rushed said - shed
parcel - partial soft - shift sake - shake sort - short
mass - mash gas - gash sail - shale gust - gushed
sop - shop sin - shin seep - sheep sank - shank
crust - crushed single - shingle son - shun gust - gushed
s and sh minimal pairs cards 2
s and sh minimal pairs cards 3
s and sh minimal pairs cards
S and SH minimal pairs practice sentences

Here are some simple sentences for your students to practice using the target sounds –

They found a sack in the shack.

Where are Sue’s shoes?

She’ll want to see the seal.

He said it is in the shed.

She crushed the crust.

Put a sheet on the seat.

We saw a boar on the shore.

For a more difficult yet fun related activity check out the S and SH tongue twisters.

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