The ʃ Sound (/ʃ/ Phoneme) (sh sound)

Hi there this is the ʃ sound. As in the words:

  • she /ʆiː/
  • should /ʆəd/
  • short /ʆəʊ/

The ʃ sound is from the ‘Consonants Pairs’ group and it is called the ‘Voiceless palato-alveolar sibilant’. This means that you create friction through clenched teeth by directing air flow through a narrow channel formed along the middle of the tongue.

How to pronounce the ʃ sound

The ʃ 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 shape of your tongue and the position of your teeth and it is a Sibilant, which is a sound made by directing a stream of air with the tongue towards the sharp edge of the teeth, In this case .
To produce the sound Clench your teeth together lightly and pull your tongue away from them. Then push air though them.

How the ʃ sound is Spelled

The /ʃ/ phoneme is normally spelled with the letter ‘sh’ as in the words but can also be spelled with the letters ‘ti’ or ‘ci’ as in the words:

  • Show /ʆəʊ/
  • push /pʊʆ/
  • national /ˈnæʆənəl/
  • official /əˈfɪʆəl/

Examples of the ʃ sound

Here are some words that begin with the/ʃ/ phoneme:

  • sure /ʆɔː/
  • shoulder /ˈʆəʊldə/
  • shot /ʆɒt/
  • shake /ʆeɪk/

Here are some words with the/ʃ/ phoneme in the middle:

  • information /ɪnfəˈmeɪʆən/
  • social /ˈsəʊʆəl/
  • education /edjʊˈkeɪʆən/
  • nation /ˈneɪʆən/

Here are some words with the/ʃ/ phoneme at the end:

  • finish /ˈfɪnɪʆ/
  • wish /wɪʆ/
  • push /pʊʆ/

So, that’s it for the /ʃ/ phoneme.

One Response to “The ʃ Sound (/ʃ/ Phoneme) (sh sound)”

  1. Diego August 31, 2015 at 5:59 pm #

    Hi there. I’m just writing to let you know that the videos have been very useful and helpful for my English test, I really appreciate you effort making them. However, I have spotted a mistake on the /ʃ/ sound video. The editor seemed to have spelled the word “Short” with the IPA as
    /ʃɔit/, I think the IPA spelling for this word will be /ʃɔːt/. Could you please clarify if I’m mistaken? Thank you for your attention.

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