This list of tongue twisters for kids makes for great literacy activities and line practice. Short tongue Twisters are not only for linguistic fun and games; they serve a practical purpose in practicing pronunciation.
Story Tongue Twisters
The most memorable tongue twisters generally involve some kind of story or description. The following have been circulating for many years:
1. Swan Swam Tongue Twister
This is one of those tough S tongue twisters for kids.
Swan swam over the sea,
Swim, swan, swim!
Swan swam back again
Well swum, swan!
2. Peter Piper
Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked.
If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
where’s the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?
3. Ned Nott
Ned Nott was shot
and Sam Shott was not.
So it is better to be Shott
Some say Nott
was not shot.
But Shott says
he shot Nott.
Either the shot Shott shot at Nott
was not shot,
Nott was shot.
If the shot Shott shot shot Nott,
Nott was shot.
But if the shot Shott shot shot Shott,
then Shott was shot,
the shot Shott shot shot not Shott —
4. Tree Toad Loved a She-Toad
A tree toad loved a she-toad
Who lived up in a tree.
He was a two-toed tree toad
But a three-toed toad was she.
The two-toed tree toad tried to win
The three-toed she-toad’s heart,
For the two-toed tree toad loved the ground
That the three-toed tree toad trod.
But the two-toed tree toad tried in vain.
He couldn’t please her whim.
From her tree toad bower
With her three-toed power
The she-toad vetoed him.
5. Mr. See Owned a Saw
Mr. See owned a saw
And Mr. Soar owned a seesaw.
Now See’s saw sawed Soar’s seesaw
Before Soar saw See,
Which made Soar sore.
Had Soar seen See’s saw
Before See sawed Soar’s seesaw,
See’s saw would not have sawed
So See’s saw sawed Soar’s seesaw.
But it was sad to see Soar so sore
Just because See’s saw sawed
6. Susan Shineth Shoes
Susan shineth shoes and socks;
socks and shoes shines Susan.
She ceased shining shoes and socks,
for shoes and socks shock Susan.
7. Doctor Doctors Another
If one doctor doctors another doctor, does the doctor
who doctors the doctor doctor the doctor the way the
doctor he is doctoring doctors? Or does he doctor
the doctor the way the doctor who doctors doctors?
If a Hottentot taught a Hottentot tot
To talk ere the tot could totter,
Ought the Hottenton tot
Be taught to say aught, or naught,
Or what ought to be taught her?
If to hoot and to toot a Hottentot tot
Be taught by her Hottentot tutor,
Ought the tutor get hot
If the Hottentot tot
Hoot and toot at her Hottentot tutor?
9. Silly Sally Tongue Twister
Silly Sally swiftly shooed seven silly sheep
The seven silly sheep Silly Sally shooed
These sheep shouldn’t sleep in a shack;
sheep should sleep in a shed.
10. No Need to Light a Night-Light
You’ve no need to light a night-light
On a light night like tonight,
For a night-light’s light’s a slight light,
And tonight’s a night that’s light.
When a night’s light, like tonight’s light,
It is really not quite right
To light night-lights with their slight lights
On a light night like tonight.
11. Betty Botter
Betty Botter bought some butter, but she said “This butter’s bitter!
But a bit of better butter will but make my batter better.”
So she bought some better butter, better than the bitter butter,
and it made her batter better so ’twas better Betty
Botter bought a bit of better butter!
12. She Sells Sea Shells
She sells sea shells by the seashore.
The shells she sells are surely seashells.
So if she sells shells on the seashore,
I’m sure she sells seashore shells.
13. Woodchuck Chuck
“How much wood would a woodchuck chuck
if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
He would chuck, he would, as much as he could,
and chuck as much wood as a woodchuck would
if a woodchuck could chuck wood.”
14. Moses Supposes
Moses supposes his toeses are roses but Moses supposes erroneously;
for nobody’s toeses are posies of roses,
as Moses supposes his toeses to be.
15. Proper Cup of Coffee
All I want is a proper cup of coffee,
Made in a proper copper coffee pot.
You can believe it or not,
But I just want a cup of coffee,
In a proper coffee pot!
Tin coffee pots
Or iron coffee pots
Are of no use to me!
If I can’t have a proper cup of coffee
In a proper copper coffee pot,
I’ll have a cup of tea!
16. Witches Watches
If two witches were watching two watches which witch would watch which watch?
17. The “Sixth Sick Sheik’s”
Ever wondered what the hardest tongue twister in the world is? The Sixth sick sheik’s is said to be the toughest tongue twister in the English language!
Try saying it, “The sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep’s sick.”
- Can your kids say it?
- Have a contest and some fun with it.
- Who can say it clearly the most times???
The following is from Doreen Zmijski of Mi. and Florida
PROBLEM BARB… “I did the tongue twisters with the kids. We laughed so hard, nobody could do it… I wish all days were like this. EVERYBODY TRY IT! ACT SILLY… IT’S A RIOT! “
Fun Tongue Twister Activities for the Kids in the Classroom
What can you do with tongue twister beside say them???
- Illustrate various tongue twisters…
- Write a book of tongue twisters…
- Have a tongue twister contest between groups in your program…
- Have youth write twisters that will stump other groups…
1. Tongue Twister Bee:
Get twisted without getting tongue-tied.
- Think of a tongue twister, like “Unique New York,” “Don’t Drop Double Drum Sticks,” or “Sally Sells Seashells by the Seashore”.
- The first person says the tongue twister once. The next person has to say it twice, the third person three times and so on.
- Keep going until someone’s tongue gets twisted.
- Think of another twister and start again.
- Source: Ivy of Boothbay Harbor, ME
***IDEA: Try to say the tongue twisters with tongues stuck under the lower lip, or stuck out!!!
2. Take Turns Saying Each of These 3 Times
- Red leather yellow leather
- Momma made me mash my m-n -m’s…
- Selfish shellfish
- Rubber baby buggy bumpers
- Knapsack straps
- Specific Pacific
- Unique New York
- Burgess’s fish shop sauce
- Men munch much mush
- Black bugs blood
- Rush the washing, Russell
- Good blood, bad blood
- Toy boat
- Fruit float
- Fresh fried fish
- Pre-shrunk shirts
- Purple Paper People, Purple Paper People, Purple Paper People
- Red Bulb Blue Bulb -Red Bulb Blue Bulb- Red Bulb Blue Bulb
- Freshly-fried fat flying fish
- Bubble bobble, bubble bobble, bubble bobble
- Greek grapes
3. TONGUE TWISTER ‘FIRST LETTER OF YOUR NAME’ GAME…
This activity is a variation of the famous ‘Consequences’ game. Write the following questions on a board or chart paper:
1. Write your first name
2. What did she/he do?
Now give kids the following instructions:
1. Get into teams of about 5 people
2. On a piece of blank paper write your answer to question #1.
3. Pass the paper to the person on your right.
4. Write an answer to question #2 on the paper you have just received. Your answer must begin with the first sound in the person’s name (Example: Bob – bought a bike)
5. Pass the paper on again and write an answer to question 3 again using the sound at the beginning of the name.
6. Continue until all the questions have been answered.
Pass the paper back to the person who started with it. Read all of the tongue twisters aloud.
It might help if you give the kids some examples before they begin the exercise:
- Bob bought a bike in Bali on his birthday because he was bored.
- Susan sang a song at the seaside on the 6th of September because she saw some sunshine. Laura laughed in the launderette at lunchtime because she lost her laundry.
Check out our Christmas tongue twisters as well.