Pronunciation – the consonant /t/

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It is a sound from the ‘Consonants Pairs’ group and it is called the ‘Voiceless alveolar stop’. This means that you stop the airflow with your tongue at the ridge behind your teeth.

The t sound is made through the mouth and it is Unvoiced which means that you don’t use your vocal chords to make the sound.

It is defined by the motion of your tongue and it is a stop sound, which is a sound made by building up air pressure by stopping air flow and then releasing it. In this case you stop the airflow with the tongue against the area behind the top teeth.

To produce the sound block the airflow by placing the tip of your tongue behind the top teeth, then release the pressure by pulling the tongue back into your mouth.

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How the t sound is Spelled

The /t/ phoneme is normally spelled with the letter ‘t’ as in the words:

  • last /lɑːst/
  • into /’ɪntʊ/
  • between /bɪ’twiːn/
  • let /let/

Examples of the t Sound

Here are some words that begin with the t sound:

  • tell /tel/
  • try /traɪ/
  • time /taɪm/
  • talk /tɔːk/

Here are some words with the t sound in the middle:

  • twitter /twɪtə/
  • start /stɑːt
  • study /ˈstʌdi/
  • control /kənˈtrəʊl/

Here are some words with the t sound at the end:

  • against /ə’genst/
  • tight /taɪt/
  • night /naɪt/
  • thought /θɔːt/