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15.24: Sometimes [z] is < zz >, Sometimes < ss >

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
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Sometimes [z] is<zz>, Sometimes <ss>

1. Underline the letters that spell [z] in the following words:

\begin{align*}& \text{bli\underline{zz}ard} && \text{whi\underline{zz}ed} && \text{qui\underline{zz}ing} && \text{gri\underline{zz}ly} \\ & \text{si\underline{zz}le} && \text{sci\underline{ss}ors} && \text{po\underline{ss}ess} && \text{bra\underline{ss}iere} \\ & \text{de\underline{ss}ert} && \text{pu\underline{zz}les} && \text{di\underline{zz}y} && \text{po\underline{ss}ession} \\ & \text{di\underline{ss}olve} && \text{fe\underline{zz}es} && \text{da\underline{zz}le} && \text{embe\underline{zz}le} \end{align*}

2. Sort the words into these two groups:

Words with [z] spelled
<zz> <ss>
blizzard quizzing dessert possess
sizzle dizzy dissolve brassiere
whizzed dazzle scissors possession
puzzles grizzly
fezzes embezzle

3. The sound [z] is spelled <ss> only rarely. In fact, the words above are just about all of the cases. Notice that the <ss> is always in the middle of the word.

4. The <zz> spelling of [z] is also rather rare. It is sometimes due to twinning, sometimes due to the VCC pattern, and it occurs between short vowels and <le>:

The words above in which <zz> is due to twinning are:

\begin{align*}& whizzed && fezzess && quizzing\end{align*}

The words in which <zz> is between a short vowel and <le> are:

\begin{align*}& sizzle && dazzle && embezzle \\ & puzzles && grizzly\end{align*}

The words in which <zz> is in a VCC pattern are:

\begin{align*}blizzard && dizzy\end{align*}

The words above in which [z] is spelled \begin{align*}<s>\end{align*} are:

\begin{align*}& scissors && puzzles && fezzes\end{align*}

5. Some Other Spellings of [z]. In the Russian word czar, [z] is spelled <cz>. Another way of spelling this word is tsar, in which [z] is spelled <ts>. In the word asthma [z] is spelled <sth>. And the letter <x> at the beginning of words normally spells [z]:

\begin{align*}\text{xerography} && \text{xenon} && \text{xylophone} && \text{xenophobia}\end{align*}

Teaching Notes.

Item 4. Grizzly analyzes to grizzl\begin{align*}\cancel{e}\end{align*} + y.

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Date Created:
Feb 23, 2012
Last Modified:
Jul 07, 2015
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