3 ways to Pronounce the Final S

To learn how to pronounce the final s, we have to understand what voiced and voiceless consonants are.

Voiced consonants are consonant sounds that are made by vibrating the vocal chords. These are the voiced consonants: B, D, G, J, L, M, N, Ng, R, Sz, V, W, Y, Z, and Th ( as in “then”)

Voiceless consonants do not use the vocal cords to produce their hard, percussive sounds. These are the voiceless consonants: Ch, F, K, P, S, Sh, T, and Th (as in “thing”).

How to Pronounce Words Endings in S

This is a good video that explains how to pronounce words ending in S

Rules: The Pronunciation of the Final S

The final S is pronounced in three different ways. The Final S Pronunciation is based on the final sound of a word, before adding -s.

When word ends with a Voiceless sound, the final “s” is pronounced as /s/

PCups
THats
KCooks
FCliffs
THMyths

When word ends with a Voiceless sound, the final “s” is pronounced as /Z/

CRaces
SPauses
XFixes
ZAmazes
SSKisses
CHChurches
SHDishes
GEChanges

When word ends with one of these sounds /dʒ/ /s/,  /z/,/ʃ/ and /tʃ/ the final “s” is pronounced as /IZ/

BCrabs
DCards
GRugs
LCalls
MPlums
NFans
NGKings
RWears
VGloves
YPlays

Pronunciation of Final “S” Examples

In these chart, you can see words that fall into the different pronunciation categories

IZZS
RacesSleepCrabs
DishesBooksWords
ChangesHatsBags
BusesCliffsDeals
BoxesGraphsDreams
PrizesMythsFans
KissesSings
WatchesWears
Gloves 
Plays

Pronunciation of the Final “S” Exercises

These are some exercises that can help you learn more about how to pronounce the final “S”

  1. English Hilfen – Pronunciation of the Final “S”
  2. Grammar Quizzes – Final “S” Pronunciation
  3. English Language Centers – Final “S” Pronunciation

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More Information

Check these pages and sites before you go:

  1. 30 Great English Tongue Twisters
  2. 8 Best English Pronunciation Apps
  3. Full Guide to English Pronunciation
  4. 6 Best Pronunciation Websites
  5. Pronunciation: List of Minimal Pairs
  6. List of Homophones [Infographic]
  7. Word Stress Rules
  8. The British Council Interactive Phonemic Chart
Jose Manuel Campos N - English Professor

About Jose manuel

I am Jose Manuel, English professor and creator of EnglishPost.org, a blog whose mission is to share content and lessons for those who want to learn and improve their English