/s/ vs /θ/ – S vs Voiceless TH – English Pronunciation Practice – Minimal Pairs – Listen & Repeat
S vs Voiceless TH – /s/ vs /θ/ – American English Pronunciation Practice Minimal Pairs – Listen & Repeat
Both the /s/ and /θ/ sounds are continuous, voiceless sounds – meaning they can be held as long as you have breath in your lungs — and the vocal cords are NOT active when making these sounds.
To produce the /s/ sound, the sides of the tongue touch the middle and back upper teeth while the tip of the tongue is lowered a bit. Air flows out the middle part of the tongue. The /s/ sound is voiceless and sounds hissy (in contrast to the /z/ sound which takes the same mouth position. The /z/ sound is voiced and sounds buzzy.)
To produce the voiceless TH sound (/θ/), the tip of the tongue touches the the edges of the front teeth while air flows around the tongue. The vocal cords do NOT vibrate. Note: the voiced TH (/ð/) sound takes the same mouth position with vocal cords vibrating.
Listen carefully to the minimal pairs and try to replicate what you hear by moving your tongue into positions described above.
Recommended ESL textbooks*
Pronunciation and Accent Reduction:
Mastering the American Accent by Lisa Mojsin:
Listening and Speaking:
The All Clear Series by Helen Kalkstein Fragiadakis
All Clear Listening and Speaking 1:
All Clear Listening and Speaking 2:
All Clear Liste