Talk

Advanced search

'F' for 'th'

(24 Posts)
wtffgs Sun 26-Oct-14 05:55:04

When should DD stop saying 'fings' and 'fumbs' etc She doesn't seem to be able to make the 'th' sound even though she's otherwise quite articulate and clear? She's just turned 7.

sunflower49 Sun 26-Oct-14 06:00:49

Have you tried telling her to put her tongue out?

This worked for me!

catkind Sun 26-Oct-14 09:09:17

Yeah, isn't the jolly phonics song about a rude clown? Perhaps you could dig that out on youtube for her?

Picklewickle Sun 26-Oct-14 09:11:33

I'm working on it atm with my 5 and 7 year old, telling them to stick their tongues out. They can physically do it, they just need reminding. Their dad says 'f', so I have to tread carefully.

OTOH my 5 year old uses 'w' for 'r' still. He can hear the difference and gets frustrated that he can't articulate it, but while I still haven't heard him say a 'r' ever, I'm assuming it's developmental and I can leave it for now.

ChunkyPickle Sun 26-Oct-14 09:18:06

Now that my 4 year-old is at school and learning to read I'm working on it (starting with 'the' and moving up)

He's getting the hang of sticking his tongue out while he says it if he's reading, and I'm going to try and use the reading a lever to get it through the rest of his speech.

Picklewickle - mine the same - I'm going to take the same tack with 'r's - making him emphasise it as he sounds out words (which he can, and when he's copying american accents on you tube toy reviews) and hope that it eventually sticks.

in2theblues Sun 26-Oct-14 09:30:17

Had to teach my own son (along with his big brother and all of his friends) to 'put your tongue between your teeth' to be able to say his name.

Lovely mums with DCs on the train today were playing I Spy. Something beginning with T? 'Chair' said bright lil gal about 4.

I often ask my students to 'keep a stiff upper lip'. Try it! Likewise, 'slack jaw' has a different physical effect.

Picklewickle Sun 26-Oct-14 09:40:50

OP there are lots of different speech sound acquisition charts via google. Some sounds do go right up to 7-8 as a normal age to master them. I'm sure 'r' is one, but not sure about 'th'.

DD was late to get 'v' too. We had 'telebision' for years. I miss that now smile

ElephantsNeverForgive Sun 26-Oct-14 09:47:20

I still can't really hear the difference. School friends occasionally teased me for it. I told them to thuck off!

RosesandRugby Sun 26-Oct-14 09:52:25

My DS really struggles with this. His teacher has a very strong local accent (Black Country) and a lisp and he copies everything she says. I take 2 minutes out of the day (usually while doing homework/reading) and give him random words to say 'correctly' and I give stars for correct pronunciation.

We have to work very hard at pronouncing 'th' instead of 'f' and that 'house' 'mouse' and 'you' are pronounced differently despite having the same spelling in the middle (the 'ou' ) along with saying 'doesn't' instead of 'dough'.

At 7 years of age I wouldn't worry too much just introduce corrections as you go along and eventually they will just say it correctly without you having to say anything.

Does your DD know that pronouncing 'f' instead of 'th' is incorrect ? Is she just copying other children at school with regards to her speech and then continues to speak this way when at home or is it she just doesn't understand that she is pronouncing it incorrectly ? If she reads the words containing 'th' and 'f' does she pronounce them differently when reading from general conversation ?

If she pronounces correctly when reading then it may just be she slips into a less formal slang during conversation but if she reads them incorrectly then she may not link the sounds to the spelling so that may need to be revisited again. Her class teacher should be able to help you with this.

Coolas Sun 26-Oct-14 09:57:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JennyBlueWren Sun 26-Oct-14 11:17:43

I remember being on Guide camp at age 12 and my patrol setting the aim of getting my f and th sorted. They made me repeat "fish fingers and thumbs". Can't remember if it did any good but I'm certainly sorted now (30) and it never affected my spelling.

catkind Sun 26-Oct-14 13:15:21

Lovely mums with DCs on the train today were playing I Spy. Something beginning with T? 'Chair' said bright lil gal about 4.
smile I remember DS point blank refusing to believe that tree began with t not ch when playing I Spy at a similar age, we had to show him in a book when we got home.

nonicknameseemsavailable Sun 26-Oct-14 13:28:02

if I remember right they should have th by the age of 6. of course losing top front teeth can then cause a problem again.

one of the best things to do is to stand side by side looking in a mirror, show how YOU position your mouth when you say th and then ask them to do the same. They can see then how theirs looks different.

Laura0806 Mon 27-Oct-14 23:54:07

sorry, no help but my almost 7 year old dd does the same. She writes thun for fun and fings for things aswell. The sticking your tongue out hasn't helped yet

Ferguson Tue 28-Oct-14 18:30:30

Try and be as clear and accurate in your own pronunciation when you talk to her, even exaggerating certain sounds if necessary.

So that she knows what letters form what sounds, this inexpensive and easy to use book, can encourage children with reading, spelling and writing is mentioned in the MN Book Reviews section. In “Children’s educational books and courses”, the Oxford Phonics Spelling Dictionary presents words by their initial SOUND, unlike a ‘normal’ dictionary, which is always in alphabetical order. Thus, in the ‘S’ section are words like ‘cinema’ and ‘cycle’, which have a ‘S’ sound, even though they are spelt with ‘C’.

The Dictionary is colourful and amusingly illustrated, and can be used by children on their own, or with adult support, from Reception age right up to the start of secondary school.

The review has a link to view sample pages, and purchase if you so wish.

bigTillyMint Tue 28-Oct-14 18:38:26

coolas I didnt know that! Surely that is something all teachers/parents would benefit from knowing? Quite crucial that all children develop the ability to form and use all sounds correctly <I am a teacher and parent myself!)

JimmySilentHill Tue 28-Oct-14 18:43:03

My DS really struggles with this. His teacher has a very strong local accent (Black Country) and a lisp and he copies everything she says.

Both reception teachers at Dd1's school say 'haitch'. DD1 will not believe me when I say it is 'aitch'. Her teacher has a very strong west country accent and says things like 'we dooz (do) singing' confused Luckily we live in the west country so it could be worse!

It is only now that she has started school and is sounding out words that I am truly realising what DD1 says. She does the f/th thing, plus she says duh for the, at for that, lay for they and a-scuse me!

MrsCakesPrecognition Tue 28-Oct-14 18:45:02

Are you in Essex? Most people (children and adults) say F instead of TH, it isn't something that they grow out of.

nonicknameseemsavailable Tue 28-Oct-14 19:11:58

I would get hearing checked too, it is possible that they aren't hearing the sound correctly, especially if they are writing it wrongly too. This would imply they genuinely think the sound is f instead of th in which case it isn't just a case of them not being able to say it right. My eldest went through a patch of not being able to say th but she knew it was spelt th not f it was just she couldn't actually make the sound.

Ferguson Tue 28-Oct-14 23:07:11

If you need additional reinforcement in the form of Phonics information, this could help:

An inexpensive and easy to use book, that can encourage children with reading, spelling and writing is mentioned in the MN Book Reviews section. In “Children’s educational books and courses”, the Oxford Phonics Spelling Dictionary presents words by their initial SOUND, unlike a ‘normal’ dictionary, which is always in alphabetical order. Thus, in the ‘S’ section are words like ‘cinema’ and ‘cycle’, which have a ‘S’ sound, even though they are spelt with ‘C’.

The Dictionary is colourful and amusingly illustrated, and can be used by children on their own, or with adult support, from Reception age right up to the start of secondary school.

The review has a link to view sample pages, and purchase if you so wish.

Seryph Wed 29-Oct-14 15:08:41

My Dad grew up in "Sauf Landen" (South London) and while both of us can say it properly it more often than not comes out as "Saouf Lundon" some sort of hybrid pronunciation.
There is no such thing a proper pronunciation really, so long as the child is understandable, if it is a local dialect or accent. You can correct them as much as you like now, but their own diction will change as they grow. In all honesty, no one wants to be mocked for sounding "too posh" or "too common".
If your child can pronounce "th", feel free to correct them but don't expect them to be happy about it, or to constantly use your way if other kids at school don't. If you are really that worried that your child can't pronounce the sound at all, then maybe talk it over with your doctor.

edpen Mon 03-Nov-14 13:49:11

Lots of good advice here. The best advice I ever got from a S & L expert was to refuse to understand mispronunciations. Eg if child says 'free' instead of 'three' you say pardon? what did you say? Ie, don't just correct and model the correct pronunciation, start expecting that they use it.

Language is about communication and if you understand them when they use the wrong sounds why should they make the extra effort (which might be considerable at first) to make the correct sound.

maizieD Mon 03-Nov-14 16:01:11

I grew up in Essex many, many years ago, and I don't actually recall locals saying 'f' for 'th'. I think it's spread out from London over the years sad

It is worth trying to correct it because it causes so much of a problem with spelling. Not only do children get confused between, say, the absence of life and the absence of hearing, but I have actually had children spell words that begin with a /f/ sound (spelled 'f') with a 'th' because they think that 'th' spells /f/.

Alyosha Mon 03-Nov-14 18:20:23

I don't think "f" is incorrect if it's part of a regional accent - it's not as though there is one "correct" accent that the entirety of the UK should speak with.

Two friends of mine cannot pronounce "th", one went to Cambridge and is now a Civil Servant, whilst the other is completing a PHD. I don't think it's something to be too worried about! Incidentally, both can spell absolutely fine! It's hardly as though English spelling is completely logical anyway - children learn that enough is pronounced enuff but thorough is pronounced thurru without too many difficulties.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now