have found that 80% come 90% the students do not understand that the English letter “O” has an ext than one sound! The letter “O” regularly supplies three various sounds, yet a the majority of students pronounce plenty of words wrong since they use simply one “O” sound all the time.

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The simple sounds are: Long-O, Short-o, and Short-o-2.


This is the “universal” or “normal” sound for “O” – the sound through rounded lips (most languages use this sound). Some typical words through this sound are: go / home / present / short / understand / open up / short / over / no / many / for / only.


This is the normal Short-o sound, and it is actually the same sound as Short-a-2 (as in “mama”). Some typical words that have Short-o are: not / unable to do / coffee / copy / hot / not correct / lot / lengthy / turn off / ~ above / prevent / song.

To pronounce Short-o clearly, the lips have to NOT be rounded and the mouth have to be open up with the tongue low and relaxed.

Short-o-2 (Alternate-Short-o)

Short-o-2 have the right to be assumed of together the Alternate-Short-o, and also it borrows the sound of Short-u. There are fairly a few words through this sound. A couple of examples are: kid / won / native / done / come / part / love / above / nothing / tongue / that / range / brothers / money / month.

To pronounce this sound clearly, the lips should NOT be rounded, the tongue must be an extremely relaxed in the middle of the mouth, and also the mouth is less open than for continual Short-o. (See boss or bus?)


Besides the simple sounds, any type of vowel letter deserve to use the schwa sound in unstressed syllables. However, Short-o-2 and also the schwa sound room actually the exact same (schwa and Short-u are made in the same ar in the mouth). So also though we could say the the letter “O” has 4 sounds, in fact there are just three distinct sounds the you have to make.

Some instances of words with an “O” in an unstressed syllable are: 2nd / finish / save on computer / watch / produce / melody.

Some tricky cases

You need to memorize the correct pronunciation of these inexplicable words, so the you have the right to say them v confidence.

So remember, the letter “O” has an ext than one sound, and also it is normally pronounced with one of the three straightforward sounds: Long-O, Short-o, and Short-o-2 (or schwa).

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1. Collection pair “OU” — Several various vowel sound are supplied for the vowel pair “OU”, and it is not easy to predict. See: OU – five no!

2. Test yourself! — countless students have an obstacle distinguishing in between Short-o and also Short-u. You deserve to test you yourself on the “Vowel Test” web page of the site.