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13.21: Sometimes [k] is Spelled <ch>, Sometimes <lk>

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
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Sometimes [k] is Spelled <ch>, Sometimes <lk>

1. We borrowed the letters of our alphabet from the Romans. The Romans had borrowed their alphabet from a group of people called the Etruscans. And the Etruscans had borrowed their alphabet from the Greeks. One of the Greeks' letters looked like our <X>. It was called chi, pronounced [kī], and it spelled the sound [k]. When we borrowed Greek words that contained chi, we changed the spelling from <x> to <ch>, still pronounced [k] - as in words like chorus, school, and Christmas. Most of the words in English that contain the sound [k] spelled <ch> come from old Greek words with chi. Underline the <ch> spellings of [k] in each of the following words:

\begin{align*}&\text{orchestra} && \text{school} && \text{architect} && \text{psychiatrist}\\ &\text{chorus} && \text{chaos} && \text{echo} && \text{scholar}\\ &\text{chronicle} && \text{mechanic} && \text{character} && \text{orchid}\\ &\text{ache} && \text{schedule} && \text{scheme} && \text{chord}\\ &\text{psychology} && \text{chemical} && \text{anchor} && \text{Christmas}\\ &\text{monarch} && \text{stomach} && \text{technical} && \text{chlorophyll}\end{align*}

2. Sort the words into the three groups described below:

3. There is one other spelling of [k] that is worth a special look. In a few words [k] is spelled <lk> - as in chalk. A long time ago the <l> was pronounced, but no longer. All of the following words contain an <l> that is usually no longer pronounced. Six of them end in the sound [k] spelled <lk>. Sort the sixteen words into the four groups described below:

\begin{align*}&\text{salmon} && \text{talk} && \text{stalk} && \text{halve}\\ &\text{walk} && \text{yolk} && \text{palm} && \text{chalk}\\ &\text{folk} && \text{halfway} && \text{psalm} && \text{calves}\\ &\text{calf} && \text{calm} && \text{salve} && \text{behalf}\end{align*}

4. In the words in which [k] is spelled <lk>, what letter usually is right in front of the <l>? ______. In words in which [k] is spelled <lk>, what other letter sometimes is right in front of the <l>? ______. In words that end <alk>, which does the \begin{align*}<\text{a}>\end{align*} spell: [a] or [o]? ______. In words that end <olk>, which does the <o> spell: [o] or [ō]? ______.

Word Histories. The first letter of the Greek word for Christ was chi — or <X> — which is why we sometimes abbreviate our word Christmas to Xmas. The <x> in Xmas is really the old Greek chi.

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