In this Pronunciation Activation Pack we will be looking at the fourth of the pure vowels / uː /.
We will look at the letter combinations that give the / uː / sound.
We will look at lots of words which have the / uː / sound in them.
Finally, we will activate your ability to hear and produce the / uː / sound correctly.
Letter Combinations for / uː /
The long pure vowel sound / uː / can be formed by these letter combinations:
U, OO, O, OU, EW, UE, UI, and OW
A minimal pair is a pair of words which are almost the same except for one different sound, in this case, the vowel sound.
There are very few minimal pairs in English using the / uː / sound which can confuse learners.
The most notable ones are
- fool / fuːl / and full / fʊl /
- lucre / ˈluːkə / and looker / ˈlʊkər /
- pool / puːl / and pull / pʊl /
- suit / suːt / and soot / sʊt /
Words Starting / uː /
There are very few words in English which start with the / uː / sound. The most commonly used ones are:
Oodles /uːdl̩z/ which means a lot of.
We have oodles of noodles.
/ wi həv ˈuːd.l̩z əv ˈnuːd.l̩z /
Ooze /uːz/ which means to be released slowly and in small amounts.
The blood was oozing out from around the wound.
/ ðə blʌd wəz ˈuːz.ɪŋ ˈaʊt frəm ə.ˈraʊnd ðə wu:nd /
Any other words beginning with the / uː / sound are names or rarely used words borrowed from other languages.
There are very few minimal pairs in English which cause confusion with the / uː / sound.
You should not have too much trouble matching the 292 minimal pairs I’ve included in the Pronunciation Activator.
You will be able to practice listening to and repeating over 420 English words.
Each time you do the Pronunciation Activator you will be given 5 random exercises from a large database of minimal pair matching exercises.
The exercises will fully activate your use of the / uː / sound for both speaking and listening.
Interactive British English IPA Chart
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