Pronunciation exercises: /d/ vs /t/

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/d/ is a voiced consonant. /t/ is an unvoiced consonant.


  • with initial /d/: day - did - do;
  • with final /d/: and - bad - bed;
  • initial and final: dad - dead - did;
  • past tense: answered - loved - played - waited


  • with inital /t/: ten - two/too;
  • with final /t/: bat - but - put;
  • past tense: asked - jumped - laughed - missed - passed - pushed

/d/ vs /t/[edit]

See more minimal pairs ending in /t/ or /d/ in next section.

  • aid - eight; bad - bat; bed - bet; bid - bit; bride - bright; code - coat; dead - debt; do - two/too; down - town; dry - try; fade - fate; had - hat; hard - heart; hide - height; inside - insight; mad - mat; ride - right/write; slide - slight;
  • Past tense of verbs: bend - bent; bowled - bolt; broad - brought; complained - complaint; learnedAmE - learntBrE; lend - lent; sad - sat; send - sent/cent; spelledAmE - spelt;BrE spend - spent;

This is not a minimal pair: dreamedAmE /driːmd/ - dreamtBrE /dremt/


An interesting exercise to get students to pronounce these endings correctly, or at least be aware of the problems, is to spell out a series of "base" words and get 'em to come up with the variations finishing in /t/ or /d/:

"base" word with /t/ with /d/
an ant and
be - bee beat bead
bill built build - billed
car cart card
fee feet feed
greyBrE - grayAmE great greyedBrE - grayedAmE - grade
he heat he'd - heed
her hurt heard
may mate made
men meant mend
play plate played
ray rate raid
see - sea - C seat seed
sigh sight - site - cite side - sighed
star start starred
stay state stayed
ten tent tend
tie tight tied - tide
way - weigh wait - weight weighed - wade
we wheat weed - we'd
why white wide

Spanish L1[edit]


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