A Ghost with a Slight Cough Gave a Great Fright: Sounds of GH

The letters GH are enough /f/ to make you sigh (silent), aren’t they just ghastly /g/?

  1. GH sounds like /f/ when you laugh, but you must be brave…
  2. because GH sounds like /g/ in a ghoul from the grave.
  3. One more to see, and then you have three: GH might be silent in these:

When bats are in silent flight in the dark of the night, the sight can give you quite a slight fright.

These letters make no sound at all when it is bright, like a vampire that caught sight of the light.

a ghost /g/ with a slight (silent) cough /f/ gave a great fright (silent)

A word list and worksheet for GH variations is available at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Learn more about the Phonics Pow Toolkit, how to get free word sort games and more free resources.

The /k/ Sound at the end of words

The /k/ sound at the end of a word is one of the consonants that vary. (IV.c)

When the K sound is heard at the end of a word:

A CK is often needed after a vowel that is short. The K needs help to make it work. This is a short vowel variation that can be covered at the end of the SOUND OUT WORDS section (II.c) of the Phonics Pow Toolkit. CK is a consonant digraph (two letters that make one sound), in this case the familiar sound of /k/. Other consonant digraphs make new sounds.

The duck said “quack” on the deck near the slick dock.

PLAY a wordsearch puzzle with words that end in ck.

The rest of the time, a k often is fine.

With a consonant between it is a new task, it takes just a k so remember to ask. Drink milk, dunk a basket, or honk at an elk: the consonant means there is only a k.

In words with bossy r, and vowel teams that are long or diphthongs, a k by itself will park. (The beak of a hawk, a look at a book, a weak croak from a throat, a stork with a fork, a dog that will bark.)

Don’t panic, but there’s one more thing to see. Some two syllable words with a short i only need c. (like a picnic in the attic, it’s a little like magic.)

Learn how to get a free set of word sort games that includes words that end with the sound of /k/. A set of anchor charts, a worksheet, and a game for the /k/ sound at the beginning and end of words is available at Teachers Pay Teachers. The Consonant Variations soccer sort game includes the ending sound of /k/, plus hard or soft c and g. Learn more about spelling the K sound from thisreadingmama.

Two Sounds of S

The letter S the sound of /s/ makes when you see snakes. Hear the sound of /z/ when your nose smells a rose. Letter s is one of the consonants that vary.

s = /s/ at the beginning of words: sand, sell, sip, soft, sun. It is also the sound of /s/ in beginning s blends: scuff, smell, sniff, spill, stop, swim.

s at the end of words can be either /s/ or /z/: cats /s/ and dogs /z/ need baths /s/ with suds /z/. Understanding voiced or unvoiced consonants can help when s comes after a consonant. Consonants that are voiced make a vibration in the throat which can be felt. Consonants that are unvoiced are quieter and no vibration is felt.

After letters made with a hiss or puff of air, the soft sound of /s/ is often there. In these examples s follows unvoiced consonants f, t, k, p, and th: puffs, cups, cats, sacks, paths.

After letters that make the throat buzz, the sound of /z/ is often what s does. In these examples s follows voiced consonants b, d, g, v, l, m, n, r: jobs, nods, dogs, stoves, files, rooms, pens, stars.

After vowels, sometimes s = /s/

The -ss ending flossy words above have the sound of /s/.

More words with the /s/ sound after a vowel: Fill this bus with gas.

After vowels, sometimes s = /z/

Here are some words where s = /z/ after a vowel: It is easy for boys to choose toys.

When you sure like sugar and tissue, you hear that s can also = /sh/.

WATCH videos and PLAY online games at the Consonants That Vary tutorial at Wakelet. Note that many online games require flash and may not work well on mobile devices. Downloading the Mozilla Firefox browser can be helpful.

Letter S is covered in Consonants that vary (IV.c) in the Phonics Pow Toolkit with a worksheet and gameboard. Learn how to get a free set of word sort games that includes the two sounds of s. A free word sort game for the letter S is available at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers.

The /k/ Sound at the beginning of words

The /k/ sound at the beginning of words can be spelled with a c or a k. This is one of the consonants that can vary.

K takes i and e, and C takes the other three.

Some words with short vowels can begin with the /k/ sound.

Some words with more advanced vowel patterns can begin with the /k/ sound.

Introduce these words as the patterns are learned.

Available at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers: A worksheet for the sound of /k/ at the beginning of words with anchor charts and word lists. Or the free anchor charts and word lists. A worksheet and game board are included in the Phonics Pow Toolkit. (IV.c) Learn how to get the free word sort games that include the /k/ sound.

Hard or Soft C and G

The letters C and G can make hard or soft sounds.

C is often hard /k/ before A, O & U. With the others, a soft C /s/ will do.

The words in the word families of -ace and -ice have the soft C sound.  C before e will often soft be. These are Silent e words.

G is often hard before A, O & U. With the others, a soft G will often do.

(But this is not always true, which you know if you get a gift given to you!)

Words that end in -ge or -dge have the soft G sound of /j/. G before e will often soft be. Defender d can stop the vowel from being long in some Silent e words.

Sight words with:

  • Hard c /k/: can, came, car, cut
  • Soft c /s/: face, place, space, sentence
  • Hard g: go, got, big, give
  • Soft g /j/: large, page, change

Keyword sentence: I got a large change when I came to this place.

There are some words with short vowels that have a hard or soft c and g, but many more have advanced vowel patterns. Because of this, hard or soft c and g (IV.b)  are introduced after learning about Defender d at the end of the Silent e section in the Phonics Pow Toolkit. (III.a) Download worksheets or the free anchor charts with word lists for hard or soft c and g at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers. The Consonant Variations soccer sort game includes hard or soft c and g, plus the ending sound of /k/.

WATCH videos and PLAY games about hard or soft C and G at the Wakelet tutorial on Consonants that vary.

Learn how to get the free word sort games that include hard or soft c and g. Game boards for hard or soft c and g are part of the Phonics Pow Toolkit.

Tricky Y

The letter y is tricky indeed. It can make many sounds, more than three!

Yes, y is a consonant in yellow and yolk.

Sometimes y makes a short i sound like in system and gym.

A y at the end can a vowel be, with the sound of a long i or e. How do you know which you see? At the end of one syllable words, y often says “i” like in fly. With more syllables, it is often a long e.

There are some exceptions, like the one syllable word “key” with the long e sound. (Hey! No Way! -ey can sound like a long a in some words like grey, and the vowel team -ay a long a will say.) You can’t deny y is long i in two syllable words like: July, supply, reply, rely, and apply. Some two syllable words go in the long i pile like typist and style.

WATCH videos and PLAY online games about Tricky y at the Vowels That Vary Wakelet tutorial.

Download a free handout on Tricky Y, and get a Y flower sort game.

Practice Tricky Y with a story and word sort at my Teachers Pay Teachers Store.

Consonants That Vary

When the same letters make more than one sound, or one sound can be made with more than one letter, you really know that English is Weird.

WATCH videos and PLAY online games at the Consonants That Vary tutorial at Wakelet. Note that many online games require flash and may not work well on mobile devices. Downloading the Mozilla Firefox browser can be helpful.

CONSONANTS

The letters C and G can make hard or soft sounds.

C is often hard before A, O & U. With the others, a soft C will do.

G is often hard before A, O & U. With the others, a soft G will often do.

(But this is not always true, which you know if you get a gift given to you!)

When the K sound is heard at the beginning of a word:

K takes i & e, C takes the other three.

When the K sound is heard at the end of a word:

A CK is often needed after a vowel that is short. The K needs help to make it work.

KorCK

PLAY PRINTABLES Consonant Variations Soccer Sort Games include Hard and Soft C and G, and K or CK ending, available at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Two Sounds of S: letter S can also make more than one sound. S can say snake, probably everyone knows. It can also say /z/ when a nose smells a rose. A free word sort game for the letter S is available at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers.

The sound of /f/ can be spelled many ways indeed, more than three! In the following sentence, how many ways do you see? The dolphin swam fast by in the rough sea by the cliff. (f as in fast, ff as in cliff, ph as in dolphin, and gh as in rough.)

A ghost with a slight cough gave a great fright. GH can also be /g/ when you see a ghost all in white, or no sound at all when you see the light.

These guidelines may help you to figure out the many sounds you will discover all about.

Learn more about word sort games for the Phonics Pow Toolkit.

Consonant Digraphs

digraphs2

Digraphs are a pair of letters representing one sound. The consonant digraphs that make new sounds are CH, SH, TH, WH + NG.

Consonant Digraphs may be introduced after learning about Blends, using words with short vowels. Many words with consonant digraphs have more advanced vowel patterns, which can be introduced as the patterns are learned. Download a free Consonant Digraph Word List with Bookmarks at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers. Practice words with short vowels and a consonant digraph with an online wordsearch.

WATCH videos and play online games at the Consonant Digraph tutorial at Wakelet. WATCH  more videos from Kids vs Phonics: CH (1:38) SH (1:28) TH (1:53) TH-Hard (1:42) WH (1:34) & NG (2:02). PLAY more online games from Literactive:  Whale gameCrab Catcher game, NG: Hula Pool & Gopher game.

Please note that many online games require Flash and may not work well on some tablets and smartphones. It can be helpful to download the Mozilla Firefox browser.

LISTEN and play Digraphs at Quizlet

NG as in Sing

Elvis Presley was known as the King of Rock & Roll. He liked to wear rings when he sang. His longest song was “Suspicious Minds” (7:14) On Nov. 1, 1969, it reached number one on Billboard’s Hot 100.

TH can be voiceless or voiced

In some words, the th makes a vibration or voiced sound. At the beginning of words: this, that, them, than, then. In the middle of words: father, mother, brother. At the end of some verbs: smooth, bathe, breathe.

In other words, the th is a quieter or voiceless sound:. At the beginning of words: thin, thick, thud, thumb. Or at the end of words: bath, math, with, cloth. In the middle of some words: ethics, method, lethal.

READ the Pattern – Digraph Sentences from stickyball.net. READ Books: by author Brian Cleary: “Whose Shoes Would You Choose?” “The Thing on the Wing Can Sing” and “Spring in the Kingdom of Ying”

RollReadKeep

PLAY Roll, Read, & Keep -free at Teachers Pay Teachers. Mix BAM & SWIPE cards in with consonant digraph flashcards from bogglesworldesl.com.

More consonant digraph resources:

PLAY a Printable Game from the Measured Mom, a Digraph Picture Sort from Thisreadingmama, a word sort game for NG from Science Is For Kids, an H Brothers Poster from thewisenest.

A Digraph Word Sort and story and Bossy R and Consonant Digraph Soccer Sort Game are also available at the Super Tutor Tools Store at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Some consonant digraphs make familiar sounds. CK often spells the /k/ sound at the end of one syllable words with short vowels. PH can make the F sound: WATCH the Kids vs Phonics Video (2:47) & Jack Hartmann Video (2:16). GH sometimes make the F sound, but an I before GH makes a long I sound as in the word light, with the gh silent. WATCH the Kids vs Phonics Video (1:23).

-tch ending: the /ch/ sound immediately after a short vowel in a one syllable word is often spelled with -tch. A Catch the Pitch board game and word sort from Super Tutor Tools store is available at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Some words have both a Bossy R vowel and consonant digraphs. Practice these with activities at Shark Chart!

Blends

Two (or more) consonants may blend together with each sound heard in the blend.

Blends are often introduced after learning about short vowels, so it’s a good idea to begin practicing with blends that have short vowels. Blends with other vowel patterns can be included after they have been learned. Blending the sounds of letters from left to right is an important skill for beginning readers. As other vowel patterns are introduced, scan for phonics patterns in words to decode them.

WATCH videos and PLAY online games at the Consonant Blends tutorial at Wakelet

LISTEN & LEARN Blends at Quizlet

Blends picture sorts from flyingintolearning.com. (More Blends picture sorts from fairypoppins for playdoughtoplato.com and color picture cards from testyyettrying)

Sort onto a B&W blends chart from thisreadingmama (or color blends chart from maketaketeach), S blends ice cream activity at kizclub.com

Blends flip books with pictures and words from phonics-teaching.com

READ Blend sentences at stickyball.net

PLAY Printable Letter Blends puzzle from Learning 4 Kids (11 pages, some color), Go Fish blends game from Adrian Bruce

Great Green Grapes Blend Board Game at TeachersPayTeachers

PLAY more online games:

Blending: word-machines short vowels at starfall. Short vowels at kizphonics. ladybugs at literactive.

Blends: Literactive: Warehouse gameBowling gameSorting Office, and Final Blends Honey Maze.