How to teach the J sound as in Jump


~the J sound as in Jump~

Emerges around 3 1/2 years of age

Mastered between 6 and 7 years of age

Post written for DH and her daughter

The J sound in jump is written as seen above in the international phonetic alphabet.  It has two components (despite being produced with a single impulse of breath): the D sound and the ʒ sound as in the word measure and treasure.  The ʒ sound is one of the hardest sounds to produce in English and it is the least produced sound.

The dʒ sound is very similar to its contrasting sound: the CH sound as in chop, choose, cherry & cheese.  With regard to placement both of these sounds are the same…the only difference is when you make the J sound as in jump…your vocal folds vibrate…so it is a motor on sound….the CH sound is a motor off sound…so your vocal folds do not move.

When targeting the J sound…I like to see if the child is able to make the CH sound…giving me some information about placement.  You can read more about how to produce the CH sound on my articulation page…but quickly I will tell you that the CH sound is made up of the T sound and the SH sound…(interesting to note: the contrasting sound for T is D and the contrasting sound for SH is the ʒ sound)….so very interesting to note also that the dʒ sound is made up of the D sound and the ʒ sound).  I had a mama on FB write that her child substitutes the SH sound for the J sound..which does make sense to me….she is deleting one component of the sound…the D sound…and then making a substitution for the ʒ sound with ʒ’s contrasting sound: the SH sound!  Hope that makes sense to you guys…it of course is very interesting to me.

Okay…enough about placement…and contrasting sounds.  How do we teach the J sound?

If she is capable of producing the SH sound…encourages her to make this sound…and turn her “motor on“….to shape the sh sound into the ʒ sound.  But remember we still need the other component of the J sound…which will of course be the D sound.

Have her make the D sound…and then follow it with the ʒ sound…you would want her to produce the d then the ʒ sound repeatedly and fast….remember this sound is going to be a bit more challenging..because of the fact that the ʒ sound is one of the hardest sounds to produce.

Tactile Cues:

Place your thumb in one corner of your mouth and your index finger in the other corner.  As you make the J sound…gently pinch your lips together. Your child should do the same.

Have your little one feel the vibration of the feeling your throat…remember the J sound is a motor on sound….so your vocal folds are moving.

*****Practicing words such as: Lunge, bungee & grunge….can help with placement…when you say these words…right before you make the J sound at the end of these words…you will make the N sound…and the N sound has the same placement as the first component in the J sound…remember it starts off with the D sound….and the N sound and D sound are made in the same place!

Hope this was helpful.

Be sure to follow the order of articulation…syllables, words, phrases, sentences and then conversation.

Two great links for free worksheets:  and

About Kim

My name is Kim Marino and I have been practicing as a licensed speech and language pathologist since 1993. I work on Long Island providing diagnostic evaluations and services to children from birth to age 21. My experience is vast and am proud to say that I work with children that may present with articulation and phonological concerns, oral motor feeding concerns, Down Syndrome feeding, cognitive rehabilitation, auditory processing delays, receptive language delays, cleft palate feeding and sound development and expressive language delays. Most importantly, I am the mother of four amazing children and am happily married to my childhood sweetheart. I feel blessed to have my four children and so lucky to share this journey in life with my husband. I always had it somewhere in my head that I wanted to develop a blog or a website of some sort so that I could provide families with an additional that parents could help their little ones become a better communicator. And as I was developing this blog....I realized that I also needed to share the stories about my life and my children....and the funny things along the way that help to keep me smiling. Whether you are a working mother or not...finding balance between home, children and life can be a challenge....I hope that my blog helps to bring a smile to your face..and also some tools to help you help your little or big one. I hope you enjoy! Kim
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