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10.5: Digraph Spellings of Long <o>

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
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Digraph Spellings of Long<o>

1. You have seen that long <oo>, [ū], is often spelled with digraphs, or two vowel letters, in patterns where you might expectort vowels. For instance, soup has [ū] spelled <ou> in what looks like a VC# pattern and balloon has it spelled <oo> in an apparent VC# pattern. Although patterns like VC# and VCC are very useful when vowels are spelled by single letters, they are not useful when vowels are spelled with vowel digraphs. But it is still possible to sort things out so that they make more sense. Underline the letters that are spelling [ō] in the following words. In those words that contain <ough> do not underline the <gh>.

coursegrowthovercoatshouldertomorrowcoarsealthoughknowsscrubboardsoulunknowntoasterpoultry undergrowththroatdoughnutbowlwindowloadedyourminnowloanedoverflowfloatingowner

You should have found three digraph spellings of [ō]:

Spelling #1, _______, occurs in ten words.

Spelling #2, _______, occurs in eight words.

Spelling #3, _______, occurs in seven words.

2. Sort the twenty-five words into these three groups:

3. Although the most common spelling of [ō] is _______, three important digraph spellings of [ō] are _______, _______, and _______.

4. Two other digraph spellings of [ō] occur in the words sew and chauffeur. These two digraph spellings are _______ and _______.

The digraph <ew> nearly always spells either [ū] as in dew or [yū] as in few. Sew is the only modern word in which it spells [ō]. The digraph <au> normally spells short <o>, [o], as in author. Though it spells [ō] in some other words we got from French, chauffeuris the only common one.

5. Digraphs are two letters spelling a single sound. In a trigraph a single sound is spelled by three letters. The following words all contain a trigraph spelling of [ō] that we have borrowed from French. Underline the letters that spell [ō]:


The trigraph spelling of [ō] is _______. Where does it always occur in the word? _______.

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Date Created:
Feb 23, 2012
Last Modified:
Oct 09, 2015
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