Some Consonant Sounds and Spellings: [p], [b], [t], [d], [k], and [g]
1. At the beginning and end of pop you can hear the sound [p].
At the beginning and end of bob you can hear the sound [b].
At the beginning and end of toot you can hear the sound [t].
At the beginning and end of dude you can hear the sound [d].
At the beginning and end of kick you can hear the sound [k].
At the beginning and end of gag you can hear the sound [g].
2. Read the following six words. Look and listen carefully. Then fill in the blanks:
3. In bob the sound [b] is spelled with the letter
4. In pop the sound [p] is spelled
5. In toot the letter <t> spells the sound [t]
6. In kick the letter <k> at the front of the word spells the sound [k]
7. In kick the letters <ck> at the end of the word spell the sound [k]
Now try these:
8. The word favor contains two vowel letters: and <o>
9. Join contains two consonant letters: <j>. or <J> and <n>
10. Write contains three consonant letters: <w>, <r>, and <t>
11. The word what contains three consonant letters: <w>, <h>, and <t>
12. Which do we put inside square brackets, letters or sounds? Sounds
Word Changes. Remember to follow the directions carefully. Each time you make the changes, you should spell a new word to put into the blank at the right:
- Write the word toot: toot
- Take away the second vowel and change the second consonant to a : top
- Change the first consonant in the word to the second consonant in the alphabet: cop
- Move the to the front of the word; change the <o> to an and put it between the and <c>; add a <k> to the end of the word: pick
- Change the first consonant in the word to the eleventh letter in the alphabet: kick
- Change the first <k> to the letter that comes right after it in the alphabet: lick
- Take away the second consonant in the word and change the <k> to the letter that comes five places after it in the alphabet: lip
- Change the first consonant in the word to the letter that comes four places after it in the alphabet: pip
- Change the middle letter in the word to an <o>: pop
Riddle. A father who gets mad a lot might be called a
1. The most important and probably difficult thing in this lesson is continuing to keep the calling of sounds distinct from the calling of letters. Remember that sounds in square brackets are called by the sounds themselves. Thus, the symbol “[p]” is pronounced just like the sound itself, [p], though you will probably find that when you say it, a little puff comes out at the end so that you end up saying something more like “puh.” That soft “uh” like sound is usually described as a schwa, written phonetically as [ə]. That same puff, or schwa sound, is hard to avoid in all of the sounds in this lesson: [p], [b], [t], [d], [k], and [g]. Don't worry about it too much. It is quite all right to pronounce [p] as “puh”, or [pə]; just don't pronounce it as , which is the pronunciation of the name of the alphabet letter, not the sound. The same holds for the sound [b], pronounced [bə], versus the letter , pronounced , and [tə] versus , [də] versus , [kə] versus , and [gə] versus .
These six sounds are all called stops, because when we pronounce them, we stop the flow of air through our mouths momentarily and then release it quickly. (That release is what causes the puff at the end.) The treatment of consonant sounds and their spellings starts with these stops because the front stops, which are pronounced toward the front of the mouth [p], [b], [t], and [d] have quite simple and highly predictable spellings. The spellings of the velar, or back, stop [g] are a bit more complicated, and those of the other back stop, [k], are perhaps the most complex of all English consonants. In these opening lessons we introduce the students to just the two or three major spellings of each sound. Later lessons deal in more detail with major and minor spellings of each sound and with the patterns that determine how to select the proper spelling: For the spellings of [p] see Book Four, lessons 39-40, 42-43; for the spellings of [b], see Book Five, lessons 17-19; for [t], see Book Four, lessons 21-24, 26-31; for [d], see Book 5, lessons 23-27; for [g], see Book Six, lessons 35-39; and for the complicated [k], see Book Seven, lessons 9-16 and 18-22. For even more on the stops and their spellings, see AES: pp. 327-49 for the front stops and pp. 350-72 for the back, or velar, stops.