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What Sounds Can “U” Make?

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Would you prefer to have fun in the sun and give a hug to a duck, or play the flute while riding on a cute unicorn? The letter U doesn’t have to choose. This Storybots phonics music video shares what sounds “U” can make:

“Long ‘U’ sounds are present in words like ‘Unique’ and ‘cUte’, while short ‘U’ sounds can be found in words like ‘fUn’ and ‘Umbrella’. Sing along and dance along to the music as you learn phonics and how to read with StoryBots!”

hug a duck
A bit more background on the sounds u, u_e, ue, eu, ew, oo, and ou from

“A long vowel is a vowel sound that is pronounced the same way as the name of the letter itself. For example, the long U sound is pronounced like ‘yoo,’ as would be the case in words like ‘lure’ and ‘tube.’ By contrast, the short U sound is pronounced more like ‘uh,’ as in words like ‘cub’ and ‘tub.’

“Long vowel words, then, are words that contain a long vowel sound. It’s important to note that the spelling of a word and the way it sounds don’t always match up so perfectly. Words like ‘few’ and ‘beauty’ also contain the long U sound. Similarly, the long A sound in ‘bake’ and ‘gate’ can also be spelled like ‘ay’ (as in ‘pay’) or ‘ai’ (as in ‘paid’), among other variations.”

storybots u
Watch these related word videos next:
What sound does “PH” make?
• O-U (The Hound Song) by Tom Lehrer
Silent E, an Electric Company song by Tom Lehrer

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