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17+ PDF Speech Therapy R Sound Activities {I Spy Articulation!}

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The r sound. What speech therapist doesn’t love the r sound? Okay, that would be me. But I do know there are some SLPs out there who do love working on the r sound. That’s why I wanted to help my fellow Speech-Language Pathologists by providing you with a list of speech therapy r sound activities to work on in therapy or to simply send home for extra practice.


Correct Position for the Target Sound

In the English language, the r sound is a difficult sound to make as well as one of the last sounds to develop. There are two different ways a Speech-Language Pathologist can teach tongue placement for r remediation. 

First, let’s review the two different variations for the correct tongue position for producing the r sound:

  • Retroflexed R
  • Bunched R

The two different tongue positions are very similar and vary in mid-tongue and tongue tip placements:

  • Teeth: The /r/ sound is made by having a slight gap between the teeth.
  • Lips: Lips should be in a neutral position and not rounded. (A rounded lip shape might lead to a /w/ in place of an /r/ sound, such as “wed” for the word “red”.
  • Sides of the Tongue: Be sure to place the sides of the tongue against the upper side of your teeth to allow for the passage of air to go down the center of the tongue.
  • Tongue Placement:
    • Retroflexed Tongue Position: Have the mid-tongue / back of the tongue somewhat tense but not bunched up. Then place the tip of the tongue pointing up just past the alveolar ridge.
    • Bunched Tongue Position: Have the mid-tongue bunched up near the roof of the mouth / back of the mouth. Then place the tip of the tongue pointing down or straight.
  • Air: Then blow a skinny stream of air over the center of your tongue (you do not want the air to come out the sides of the tongue).
  • Voice: The r sound is also a voiced sound so your voice box or vocal cords should vibrate. You can tell that their voice is turned on by touching your voice box on your neck and feeling it vibrate.

R Speech Sounds

  • Prevocalic R – is when the r sound comes before a vowel sound, such as initial r words like “red” or “row”. 
  • Vocalic R. – vocalic r words are when the r sound comes after a vowel sound, such as: or, ar, er, ear, ire, air. (more, far, later, hear, hire, pair)

Word List

Here’s an r word list for you to use in therapy or at home practice to work on your student or child’s speech.

  • For Example: run, rest, ride, rake, root, parade, tarp, harp, worm, farm, soccer, wire, weather, faster, baker

See full list of 1220+ R words at the word level, phrase level, and sentence level here.


Different Word Positions: R Words Speech Therapy 

Initial Position of Words

The initial position is the r sound at the beginning of words. For example, “rock” or “race”.

Middle of Word

Some words have the r sound in the medial position of a word, such as “scared”, “tired”, and “fork”.

End of Words

The final positions of words are when the target sound is at the end of a word. For example, “tiger” or “star”.


SEE ALSO: 21 Best Reinforcement Games for Speech Therapy

Speech Therapy R Sound Activities

Below I’ve outlined my I Spy Articulation Worksheets along with some other speech therapy activities that can be used to make your speech therapy sessions a breeze this year. 


I Spy Articulation – Sound Game

If you’re looking for an amazing freebie then you’re in the right spot. 

I’ve created a fun and engaging I Spy activity that any student is sure to love!


Conversation Level

Articulation Reading Passages and Conversations by Speech Therapy Store – Be sure to check out my TPT product if you’re in need of reading and conversational level articulation activities. 

These activity sheets would be perfect for you! You could even have your students work on identifying the main idea of the reading passages. 

Bonus Points – This product also comes with a digital version making it also perfect for teletherapy.


Articulation Games

Free Articulation Games for Speech Therapy by Speech Therapy Store – Help your child produce a good initial r sound, medial sound, or final sound with a sound game from the list above.


Flash Cards

Another fun activity is to use interactive flash cards right from your computer. 

Using real life photos is a fun way to work on r articulation therapy in connected speech with your older students or middle school aged students. 

  • Interactive Flash Cards – Have fun using our interactive r flash cards right from your computer! We’ve included 25 flash cards for the initial r, medial r, and final r for a total of 75 interactive flash cards to use with your students or clients right from your computer. 

SEE ALSO: Free Articulation Games for Speech Therapy

Picture Cards

If you’re in need of picture cards to work on the r sound then be sure to check out these free resources below.


Need Sound Practice for other Specific Sounds?

You won’t want to miss out on my complete growing list of all my articulation word lists for different sound disorders! 

This list includes s blends and coming soon l blends and r blends.


SEE ALSO: 279+ Free Speech Therapy Digital Materials

Correct Production – Effective R Therapy

Here are a handful of different types of speech therapy exercises to help your speech students in the process of articulation therapy produce the tricky r sound. You can even grab a tongue depressor to use as a tactile cue.


In Conclusion: Speech Therapy R Sound Activities

We hope you have found this article helpful for working on your child or student’s r sound. 

Be sure to grab your 17+ paged ready to go worksheets below. The pages come in initial, medial, and the final sound position perfect for sending home or using in private practice.

Good luck! If you need anything else be sure to check out my freebie library.


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