I went to a workshop several years ago, and one major strategy that I got out of it and made a difference in my therapy room was the strategy of using minimal pairs to help illustrate and teach new sounds or groups of sounds. Yes, I always knew about minimal pairs but I was surprised to realize how many of my articulation students could benefit from it! I had some severely cognitively impaired students that was able to use minimal pairs for discrimination activities, auditory bombardment, and practice!
I have even been doing workshops in my building to help show the teachers and reading specialists how minimal pairs can also be used to teach phonics/reading for those students demonstrating difficulties!
With that in mind, I created a fun, winter-themed file with a variety of minimal pairs. For each set, I used initial position since it is the easiest to illustrate and is where most are beginning with. Each set has 12 cards, 6 pairs.
/k/ vs. /t/
/g/ vs. /d/
/s/ vs. /sh/
/r/ vs. /w/
/l/ vs. /w/
/th/ vs. /f/
/v/ vs. /b/
/sh/ vs. /ch/
/n/ vs. /ng/
/s/ vs. /z/
/s/ vs. /t/
/f/ vs. /v/
Use these cards with any motivating game/activity! They include a picture from Microsoft Office's clip art which has been requested with my other articulation activities. The image helps with understanding the differences. You can access this activity HERE!
Looking for other minimal pair activities??? Have you seen my review of the Minimal Pairs Pack App? Click here to check it out!
Another product I purchased years ago and use often when working on minimal pairs is Super Duper's Read Aloud Minimal Contrast Stories with Activities.
This book has great short stories that are coloring pages that addresses the following phonological processes:
I hope these 3 activities/ideas can assist you when working with students with phonological processes/articulation targets. What other products have you used and found helpful?!