A labial consonant is produced by using your lips. Bilabial consonants are made by using both lips, labiodental consonants by using your top lip and your teeth. Some learners have problems recognizing the difference between labial and labiodental consonants. Spanish speakers, for example, have problems with /v/ and /b/.

/p/ and /b/ are labial consonants, /v/ and /f/ are labiodental consonants.

In the classroom
Asking learners to distinguish between minimal pairs such as ‘ban' and ‘van' and ‘bet' and ‘vet' is one way to help them learn to recognise these sounds. Learners can make pairs themselves for other students.

Further links:





Research and insight

We have hundreds of case studies, research papers, publications and resource books written by researchers and experts in ELT from around the world. 

See our publications, research and insight

Sign up to our newsletter for teaching ideas and free resources

We will process your data to send you our newsletter and updates based on your consent. You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the "unsubscribe" link at the bottom of every email. Read our privacy policy for more information.