Most sounds are grouped in similar pairs.
The /l/ and /r/ sounds are considered “liquid
consonants” which are produced with some
air obstruction but not enough to stop the
flow or cause friction. These sounds are
often substituted with /w/ or /y/ sounds.
To make the /l/ sound, place the tip of your tongue just behind your top front teeth. Feel the bumpy part with your tongue. Hold your tongue up and turn on your voice is turned on. Your breath should pass along both sides of your tongue and through your open lips.
The /r/ sound is one of the most complex sounds in English. It is also one of the most frequently used sounds as well as typically the last sound to develop. To make an /r/ sound you pull your tongue back and it will widen and raise in the middle. Because it has pulled back and fattened, the front part of your tongue comes down but it doesn’t touch anything inside your mouth.
It’s recommended that students practice correcting their speech error at the isolation level for each sound. Move on to the syllable level when 80% mastery is achieved. After that, move to the word level once 80% mastery at the syllable level is reached. The word level is more complex with the sound being practiced at the initial position of words (at the beginning), in the final position of words (at the end) and finally, in the medial position of words (in the middle of words). After achieving mastery of the sound in words, move to the phrase level, then to short repetitive sentences, and finally to longer, more complex sentences as the student masters each level. Finally, reading stories aloud along with structured conversational activities will help the student move to the ultimate goal of correct production during conversational speech.