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225+ Free Z Words for Speech Therapy Articulation + PDF

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As a speech-language pathologist working in the elementary setting, there was always some part of my day that was spent on articulation therapy. It was rare to not have an articulation student on a particular day. That’s why today I will be sharing with you a list of z words for speech therapy. My goal is to make your therapy planning that much easier!

Z Words Speech Therapy

If you have a student or client working on the z sounds then be sure to check out my word lists along with my interactive articulation flash cards below.


Use the links below to help navigate this post:

Correct Production

The mouth position for the z sound is actually made the exact same as the s sound by lightly placing the tip of your tongue on the roof of your mouth (the ridge right behind your upper front teeth).

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.

Then while smiling and vibrating your vocal cords 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 otherwise you will produce a lateral lisp of the z sound).

You can tell that you’re vibrating your vocal folds by placing your hand on your larynx (where an adam apple is located) and feel for a vibration. This is the only difference between the s and z sounds. 

You can even play around by turning your voice (vibrating vocal folds on and off) and go back and forth between the s and z speech sounds. Kinda cool, huh?

Visual Cue

If you’d love to have a handy visual cue to provide parents or to use in your therapy room you’ll want to grab these Speech Sound Visual Posters created by A Perfect Blend.



  • Lateral Lisp: A lateral lisp or lateral distortions happens when air escapes out the sides of your teeth. To help reduce a lateral lisp encourage your client or student to place the sides of their tongue against the upper side of their teeth to allow the passage of air to go down the center of the tongue instead of out the sides of the teeth. The lateral lisp sounds like a “slushy” s sound.
  • Interdental Lisp or Frontal Lisp: An interdental lisp or frontal lisp happens when the tongue protrudes between the front teeth. This causes the s and z sound to be produced as the /th/ sound. The word ‘zebra’ is then produced as ‘theebra’.

Years of Age

The z sound is a later developing sound. Children will begin to develop the sound around the age of 3.5 years old and should have the z sound master by the age of 8 years old. 

If you believe your child might have an articulation disorder then you’ll want to seek out a speech language pathologist to see if your child would qualify for a speech therapy session and for the speech therapist to provide you with a therapy road map for your child.

Target Word Examples

Here is a list of single words with the target sound z for you to use in therapy or for at-home practice.

  • For Example: zebra, zoo, zit, zap, zig-zag, zip, zombie 

See full list of words, phrases, and sentences below.

Be sure to grab my one page digital download freebie of initial z sounds below. Simply scroll to the bottom of this post and grab your free copy!


Word Positions: Z Words Speech Therapy 

Initial Position of Words

The initial position of the z sound is at the beginning of a word. For example, “zoo” or “zebra”.

Medial Position of Words

Some words have the z sound in the medial position of a word, such as “wizard”, “dozen”, and “lizard”.

Final Position

The final positions of words are when the target sound is at the end of the word. For example, “sneeze” or “please” are both made at the ends of words.

Z Word Lists at Word Level

Some ways to practice include having your child or student say each z word one by one as they go through a list. 

Using a dot marker can also be a great way to practice having your child put a dot under each z sound. 

In addition, I’ve compiled an easy-to-download one-page overview of the z sounds below. Simply scroll down to the bottom of this post and download your free copy.

  • 1 Syllable: zoo, zit, zap, zip, zinc, zoom, zest, zone, zen, Zack, Zeus, Zoe, zero, Z, Zed
  • 2 Syllable: zebra, zig-zag, zero, zany, ziti, zippy, zoning, zealous, zipper, zooming, zesty, Zealand, Zelda, zillion, zombie, zipcode, zester
  • 3 Syllable: Zamboni, zucchini, Zambia, zoology, zaniness, zookeeper, xylophone, zebra fish, zeppelin, zeroing, zigzagging, zinnia, zodiac
  • 4 Syllable: zoography, zoology

Practice in Flash Card Mode Right Here from Your Computer!

initial z zebra
initial z zero
initial z zealand
initial z zig zag
initial z zillion
initial z zap
initial z zest
initial z zamboni
initial z zebrafish
Initial z zit
initial z zone
initial z zip code
initial z xylophone
initial z zucchini
initial z zoology
initial z zookeeper
initial z zinc
initial z zoo
initial z ziti
initial z zen
initial z Zoe
initial z zoom
initial z zippy
initial z Zelda
initial z zipper
initial z zebra initial z zero initial z zealand initial z zig zag initial z zillion initial z zap initial z zest initial z zamboni initial z zebrafish Initial z zit initial z zone initial z zip code initial z xylophone initial z zucchini initial z zoology initial z zookeeper initial z zinc initial z zoo initial z ziti initial z zen initial z Zoe initial z zoom initial z zippy initial z Zelda initial z zipper

Initial Z Words Speech Therapy

1 Syllable2 Syllable3 Syllable
zonezealouszebra fish
4 Syllable

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Practice in Flash Card Mode Right Here from Your Computer!

medial z pizza
medial z dizzy
medial z - dozen
medial z -seizure
medial z fizzy
medial z breezy
medial z grazing
medial z drizzle
medial z freezer
medial z frazzled
medial z scissors
medial z dazzling
medial z -blazing
medial z razor
medial z grizzly
medial z- fuzzy
medial z music
medial z dozer
medial z laser
medial z poison
medial z- hazel
medial z museum
medial z lizard
medial z sizzling
medial z- buzzing
medial z pizza medial z dizzy medial z - dozen medial z -seizure medial z fizzy medial z breezy medial z grazing medial z drizzle medial z freezer medial z frazzled medial z scissors medial z dazzling medial z -blazing medial z razor medial z grizzly medial z- fuzzy medial z music medial z dozer medial z laser medial z poison medial z- hazel medial z museum medial z lizard medial z sizzling medial z- buzzing

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Medial Z Words Speech Therapy

1 Syllable2 Syllable3 Syllable
4 Syllable
poison ivy

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Final Z Words Speech Therapy

1 Syllable2 Syllable3 Syllable
freezeblue cheesewater skis
4 Syllable

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SEE ALSO: 21 Best Reinforcement Games for Speech Therapy


Short Sentences or Phrases

When working on the z sound production, it’s important to work on short phrases once your child or student has mastered the sound at the word level at or near 80% or higher accuracy.

Here is a list of z word phrases to try:

Initial Z Words Speech Therapy in Phrases

1 Syllable2 Syllable3 Syllable
zoo tripzebra jumpedZamboni ride
zit poppedzig-zag linezucchini spirals
swatter went zapzero regretsVisit Zambia
zip upfeeling zanystudy zoology
zinc vitaminsbaked zitizaniness wearing off
zoom outzippy studentszookeeper feeds
lemon zestzoning for constructionplays xylophone
zoned for housingzealous actorzebra fish swims
feel zenzipper snaggedLed Zeppelin
Zack kickedzooming inzeroing in on
Zeus struckzesty saladzigzagging directions
Zoe smiledNew Zealand
zero degreesZelda swung
letter Zzillion stars
Zed ranzombie show
new zesteryour zip code
zinnia flower
zodiac sign
4 Syllable
zoography means

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Medial Z Words Speech Therapy in Phrases

1 Syllable2 Syllable3 Syllable
dazed lookcheese pizzaamazing vacation
not fazed by the distractionshazel eyesbedazzled shoes
can not be hazeddozen eggsbenzene chemical
seizure stoppedredecorated breezeway
buzzing noiseembezzled information
fried buzzardquizzical look
blazing firedizzily walked
fuzzy blanketamusing show
dozer pushedbulldozer worked hard
fizzy drinkdeposit that check
feeling dizzydisaster struck
kazoo sangeasily walk
add some pizzazzunder the horizon
fizzing overstate of Missouri
drizzle outsideairplane museum
needs a gizmomusical talent
jazzy environmentmusician sang
drizzling rainnewspaper edited
glazing overobserving the fish
razor for shavingPresident announced
cows grazingsweet raspberry
feel frazzledrefusal of service
gazer lookedvisitor knocked
dazzling queen
grizzly bear
friend Susan
frizzle hair
puzzled look
sizzling bacon
gave me a present
music class
rat poison
cheesecake factory
cousin is
desert trip
lizard crawled
noisy dog
Thursday night
magazine issued
raisin fell
green scissors
laser beam
closet door
picked a daisy
ice cream for dessert
freezer broke
busy day
huge blizzard
brazil soccer team
breezy day
clumsy girl
easy day
husband hugged
pheasant walked
favorite season
Wednesday morning
art easel
lazy kids
true wizard
dry desert
ten roses
4 Syllable
Arizona is
country of Venezuela
realization that she
haphazardly walked
work in advertising
queso appetizer
desirable salary
fertilizer helped
at the gymnasium
horizontal line
consequence is imprisonment
invisible string
miserable dog
supervisor called
poison ivy is itchy
reservation for dinner
feeling drowsy

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Final Z Words Speech Therapy in Phrases

1 Syllable2 Syllable3 Syllable
Jazz musiclast name Sanchezexercise class
buzz of the beeAuschwitz is a reminderbananas and strawberries
announcement blitzwatch the sunriseadvertise the sale
fizz overpick flowerschallenges in math
computer whizfingers crossedmade a compromise
fuzz from the dog toybake cookiesemphasize your point
ritz crackersthree babiesJapanese ramen
pop quizalways say goodnightmemorize this
quartz ringamaze meorganize the closet
two armshold your applausepeel the potatoes
glitz and glamarrows pointinstalled car stereos
cheese stickbecause I answersympathize with you
please respondblue cheese dippick tomatoes
freeze tonightChinese artnew water skis
boys calledcommas correctly
bears ateconfuse me
tease your friendsorder tacos
won the prizefunny stories
bugs are bothersomenew pillows
short legsexcuse me
forgot the keys
pink pigs
sneeze loudly
bees around the hive
rose petals
connect the hose
nose piercing
scrapped knees
too many toys
4 Syllable
alphabetize the songs
apologize for your actions
familiarize yourself
generalize the theme
internalize thoughts
societies collapse
secretaries job

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SEE ALSO: Free Articulation Games for Speech Therapy

Sentence Levels: Z Words Speech Therapy

The next step after working at the word and phrase levels is to work on the z sound at the sentence level.

For example, you could give your child or student a list of sentences to read aloud while they work on their z sound. 

Another idea would be to give your child or student pictures with their z sound in them and then have them create a sentence about those pictures.

Below is a list of sentences to use with your child or students.

Initial Z Words Speech Therapy in Sentences

1 Syllable2 Syllable
The class took a zoo trip.The zebra jumped through the field.
My zit popped.They ran in a zig-zag line across the field.
The flycatcher went zap.I have zero regrets about my decision.
Please zip up your coat.She is feeling zany.
She needs to take zinc vitamins.I am making baked ziti for dinner
Zoom the camera out.The zippy students surprised their teacher with a baby shower.
Add some lemon zest to dinner.They are zoning this area for construction.
This land is zoned for housing.The zealous actor worked hard.
She feels zen in her amazing backyard.My zipper snagged on the coat fabric.
Zack kicked the soccer ball.I tried zooming in to see her face.
Zeus was struck with lightning.This zesty salad is yummy!
Zoe smiled at her friend.I want to fly to New Zealand.
It’s zero degrees outside.Zelda swung the sword at the opponent.
They learned the letter Z.It looks like there are a zillion stars.
Zed ran home.The zombie show is funny.
She bought a new zester.Enter your zip code in the text box.
The zinnia flower is my favorite.
Their zodiac sign is Taurus.
3 Syllable4 Syllable
The Zamboni glided across the smooth ice.Zoography is the study of animals.
These zucchini spirals are delicious!
I want to visit Zambia one day.
She will study zoology in college.
The zaniness is wearing off the kids.
The zookeeper feeds the hippo.
The toddler plays with the xylophone.
The zebrafish swims through the coral.
I went to a Led Zeppelin concert.
The police are zeroing in on the suspect.
The dog runs in zigzagging directions.

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Medial Z Words Speech Therapy in Sentences

1 Syllable2 Syllable
When tired, she has a dazed look.Order a cheese pizza, please.
The guard dog is not fazed by the distractions.She has hazel eyes.
The fraternity applicants can not be hazed anymore.I need a dozen eggs.
The seizure stopped after 3 minutes.
The buzzing noise is distracting.
I don’t want to try fried buzzard.
The blazing fire grew.
The blue fuzzy blanket is mine.
The dozer pushed the dirt.
Order me a fizzy drink, please.
I am feeling dizzy after the rollercoaster ride.
The kazoo sang a song.
She wants to add some pizzazz to her creation.
The soda is fizzing over the cup.
I hope it doesn’t start to drizzle outside.
She needs a gizmo gadget from Home Depot.
The jazzy environment was fun and relaxing.
The drizzling rain ruined the party.
The ceramic pot still needs another glazing over.
I can not find my razor for shaving.
The cows are grazing in the west field.
I feel frazzled and stressed.
The gazer admired the beautiful princess.
The dazzling queen welcomed her guests.
A grizzly bear was spotted on this hiking trail.
My friend Susan is the best.
My hair gets frizzy from the heat.
She gave a puzzled look.
The sizzling bacon smells good.
He gave me a present on my birthday.
I signed up for a music class.
There is rat poison in the garage.
Let’s go get some cheesecake.
My cousin is the same age as me.
I planned a desert trip to Joshua Tree National Park.
The lizard crawled toward the sunny rock.
The noisy dog barked all night.
Come over on Thursday night.
The magazine issue has a new cover.
The raisin fell on the floor.
Hand me the green scissors.
Laser tag is a fun game.
Close the closet door when you are done.
He picked a daisy for his mom.
I pick ice cream for dessert.
My freezer broke last night.
Tomorrow is a very busy day.
There is a huge blizzard coming.
The Brazil soccer team won the competition.
It is a very breezy day.
The clumsy girl tripped on her shoes.
I want an easy, relaxing day.
The husband hugged his wife.
The pheasant walked through the field.
My favorite season is fall.
On Wednesday morning, you have a dentist appointment.
They need a new art easel.
The lazy kids didn’t help their mom.
He is a true wizard.
The dry desert was boring.
He bought ten roses.
She is feeling drowsy.
3 Syllable 4 Syllable
That was an amazing vacation.Arizona is a beautiful state.
She bedazzled her shoes.The country of Venezuela is in South America.
Benzene is a chemical.She had a realization that she could do what she set her mind to.
She redecorated the breezeway.The toddler haphazardly walked into the sign.
He embezzled information.I work in advertising.
He gave a quizzical look.Let’s order queso as an appetizer.
I dizzily walked after the ride.I found a job with a desirable salary.
It was an amusing show.The new fertilizer helped the grass grow.
The bulldozer worked hard at the construction site.I will meet you at the gymnasium to work out.
Do not forget to deposit that check.Draw a horizontal line.
Disaster struck as the tornado went through the town.The consequence is imprisonment.
She can easily walk up the street.There is an invisible string tied from me to you.
The sun dipped under the horizon.The miserable dog was hot and tired.
I live in the state of Missouri.The supervisor called to check the status.
Let’s all go to the airplane museum.Beware of the poison ivy because it is itchy.
She has a musical talent.We should make a reservation for dinner.
The musician sang her new song.
The newspaper edited the column.
She is observing the fish at the aquarium.
The president announced a relief package last week.
Sweet raspberry tea is my favorite.
The company holds the right of refusal of service.
The visitor knocked on the door.

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Final Z Words Speech Therapy in Sentences

1 Syllable2 Syllable
I like jazz musicHer last name is Sanchez.
The buzz of the bee was loud.I woke up early to watch the sunrise.
The announcement blitz comes with lots of advertisements.Let’s go pick flowers.
The shaken drink will fizz over.I have my fingers crossed that you win the raffle.
She is a computer whiz.I want to bake cookies.
There is fuzz from the dog toy everywhere.She has had three babies.
I would like some Ritz crackers.I always say goodnight to my dogs.
There is a pop quiz today.You amaze me with your singing talent.
I have a quartz ring.They asked us to hold the applause until the end of the show.
She has two arms.The arrows point north.
She loves the glitz and glam of dinner parties.The teacher picked me because I have read the book before.
I ate a cheese stick.I ordered the blue cheese dip at the restaurant.
Please respond to this message promptly.I love the Chinese art museum.
It will freeze tonight.It is difficult to use commas correctly.
The boys called and said they will meet us there.Her decisions confuse me.
The bears ate the berries.I want to order tacos.
Do not tease your friends.Hannah tells the best funny stories.
I won the prize!The bed needs new pillows.
These bugs are bothersome.I said “excuse me” as I walked by.
The dog has short legs.
I forgot the keys again.
The pink pigs are so cute.
My dad sneezes loudly.
The bees are flying around the hive.
Drop the rose petals before the bride walks down the aisle.
Please connect the hose to the faucet.
She got a nose piercing on her 18th birthday.
She scraped her knees during a bike fall.
They have too many toys.
3 Syllable 4 Syllable
I am late for my exercise class.Label and alphabetize the songs in order, please.
Please pick up bananas and strawberries.She needs to apologize for her actions.
We need to advertise the sale more.She will familiarize herself with the text.
I have challenges in math.We need to generalize the theme more.
They made a compromise.We sometimes internalize our thoughts.
You need to emphasize your point.This society’s collapse was due to diseases from rats.
I will order some Japanese ramen.The secretaries job includes filing.
For homework, I need to memorize this poem.
I need to organize the shoe closet.
Go peel the potatoes for dinner.
My brother installs car stereos.
I sympathize with you.
I picked 3 tomatoes off the vine.
My new water skis were delivered yesterday.

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Z Words Speech Therapy Resources

S Blends

Do you need a list of s blends in addition to the z sound?

You’re in luck! I just completed my s blends post. You can check it out here!

Tongue Twisters

Are you looking to add some fun and engaging activities to your therapy sessions? 

Tongue twisters can be a fun way to work on a skill that can be sometimes boring and repetitive. Here are a few that you might enjoy using in your next therapy session.

  1. 26 Tongue Twisters ABC and Phonics all the way through A to Z by Making English Fun is a fun and engaging activity including both pictures and text.
  2. Alliteration Anecdotes A-Z cover by All In Alliteration has 26 amusing anecdotes.

Boom Cards

Boom cards are another fun and engaging way to strengthen your child or student’s articulation skills.

Here are a few favorite boom cards to work on the z sounds: 

  1. FREE Shoot Hoops For /Z/ Sounds BOOM Cards by Petite Speech Geek prompts students to shoot basketballs into the hoop and say the target sound /z/ after! This includes initial, medial and final z! 
  2. Minimal Pairs s/z by Speech Yazmin is a fun and interactive set of boom cards that focus on Z and S sounds! 
  3. Free Articulation Program for /Z/ (+ BOOM Cards) for Speech Therapy by Itty Bitty Speechie is an inclusive program that has a great set of interactive Z boom cards! 

SEE ALSO: 279+ Free Speech Therapy Digital Materials

Parent Guide

If you’re on the hunt for some helpful guides for parents when working on articulation therapy be sure to check out the following resources:


Z Activities 

Looking for a fun way to send home articulation therapy practice? Try sending home some games or coloring pages for easy at-home therapy.

  1. Articulation S & Z FREE Dice Activity by The Speech Spot Creations is a fun activity that targets the sound Z. 
  2. Free Printable Alphabet Mnemonic Letters A to Z Coloring Pages by Amo – English is a set of Z illustrations to print and color! 
  3. FREE Initial Z Articulation Story by The Speech Spot Creations is a fun and engaging story to read to practice Z articulation! It includes words in initial, medial, and final Z. 

In Conclusion: Z Words Speech Therapy

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

Be sure to grab your freebie of 20 words to start practicing 5 minutes a day!

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