Learn how to Pronounce OST & OAST in LOST, COST, MOST, HOST, POST, GHOST, COAST, ROAST, TOAST with this American English Reading & Pronunciation Lesson.


LOST: /lɔst/

COST: /kɑst/

MOST: /moʊst/

HOST: /hoʊst

POST: /poʊst/

GHOST: /goʊst/

COAST: /koʊst/

ROAST: /toʊst/

TOAST: /toʊst/


Hello! Jennifer from Tarle speech with your question of the week.

We have a little bit of a pattern study, I’m going to call it this week and it’s this o s t ending. How do you say it?

You have two options um I also added a few other words here that are spelled a little differently but you have the same pronunciation pattern. Okay, so let’s start with the general rule. So we’ve been talking the last few weeks about these o exceptions in closed syllables, typically, we would think that this pattern would be pronounced with the short o the oh and would be ost. We do have this in the word lost and in cost but there are times, and this is very common, when we have ost or we’re going to say a long o. And that would be in the words most, host, post, and ghost. Typically we see this long o pattern spelled with two vowels the o a and we’d hear this in coast, roast, and toast. Okay so how do we do this for this short oh. We’re going to open our mouth wide. Tip of the tongue is low, back of the tongue is pulled high up, move to the s. Air is continuously moving out of the mouth. Tongue is behind or just pointed down to the bottom of the mouth. It is not touching the teeth and then we’re going to touch the teeth for that t and air just puffs out. ost ost ost
lost cost

Now if we have this long o pattern, we’re going to say o. Open the mouth and then move to a pucker. Tongue moves from low um in the front to just flat in the middle of the mouth and then add that s touch the teeth for the t.
host most host post ghost

The more common spelling pattern would be this o-a-s-t and we hear that in coast, roast, and toast.

So again this ost we have a lot of exceptions to this closed syllable spelling pattern. Most people would think that it is pronounced with this oh and we do have that in very common words like lost and cost. But you can have the exceptions and you can have the long o in most, host, post, and ghost. And then we have the same ost but more likely spelled with o-a-s-t and we see this in coast, roast, and toast.

So give it a try I know people are going to notice the difference. If you found this helpful please give us a like and share check out our products and our classes at Tarle speech. Thanks so much everyone have an amazing weekend!