short u sound

The Short U Sound

The letter u has two short sounds, /Ʌ/ and /Ʊ/. There is no easy way of tell when the short u will say /Ʌ/ or /Ʊ/. Always consult your dictionary to be sure. In today’s lesson, we will be learning about of the two sounds of the short u, /Ʊ/.

The vowel /Ʊ/ sound is vowel number eight. It is a short sound which sounds a lot like the ‘o’ in our native languages. A lot of persons are not conversant with the sound so they end up substituting /u/ for /Ʊ/when they speak.

This means that when they see the words cook, pull or hood, they will say /kuk/, /pul/ and /hud/.

But as shown, /Ʊ/ is not a difficult sound to master. Watch Diction Avenue now to learn how the sound is produced


How to Teach the Short u sound.

Start by helping the learners master how the, /Ʊ/ sound in isolation. The learners should aim at saying the ‘o’ in oke.

Now pair this sound with other consonant sounds to create new words. Try saying these words: Put, look, foot.

As can be seen from the above examples, the  , /Ʊ/sound is predominantly spelt with the letter u and oo. But it can also be spelt with ou.


More word Examples for the Short u sound

Learn to say these words with the , /Ʊ/ sound

Pull         /pƱl/                     Should /∫Ʊd/

Push      /pƱ∫/                     Would /wƱd/

Put         /pƱt/                     Shook /∫Ʊk/

Could  /kƱd/                       Wood /wƱd/

Good  /gƱd/                         Hook /hƱk/


Now watch Abigail Anaba teach the short U sound on Diction Avenue.


Aslo on the Avenue this week: Ask Anything English. Should you say: My name is or my names are…?

Watch the response:

And on Stories that Teach, we learn about Dele the Helpful Deer. Watch and learn with the kids and teach them when to help and when not to help.



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