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16.7: Lesson Thirty-one

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How Do You Spell [j]?

1. You can hear the sound [j] at the beginning and end of the word judge. Underline the letters that spell [j]. Don't include any silent final <e>'s in your underlining. You should find four different spellings:

&\text{ob\underline{j}ect} && \text{\underline{j}uicy} && \text{\underline{j}u\underline{dg}ement} && \text{a\underline{dj}ust}\\ &\text{acknowle\underline{dg}e} && \text{ma\underline{j}esty} && \text{pa\underline{j}amas} && \text{\underline{j}ustify}\\&\text{bu\underline{dg}et} && \text{coura\underline{g}eous} && \text{hy\underline{g}iene} && \text{ener\underline{g}y}\\&\text{\underline{g}ymnasium} && \text{gru\underline{dg}e} && \text{de\underline{j}ected} && \text{pre\underline{j}udice}\\&\text{ma\underline{j}estic} && \text{ga\underline{dg}et} && \text{oxy\underline{g}en} && \text{di\underline{g}estion}\\&\text{wrecka\underline{g}e} && \text{a\underline{dj}ective} && \text{\underline{j}ournalist} && \text{messen\underline{g}er}

2. Sort the words into these four groups:

Words in which [j] is spelled . . .
<j> <g>
object pajamas gymnasium energy
majesty dejected wreckage digestion
juicy journalist courageous messenger
majestic justify hygiene
judgement prejudice oxygen
Words in which [j] is spelled . . .
<dg> <dj>
acknowledge gadget adjective
budget judgement adjust

3. Look at the words in which [j] is spelled either <g> or <dg>. Sort them into the following three groups:

Words in which the <g> or <dg> is followed by . . .
an <e> an<\mathrm{i}> a <y>
acknowledge judgement hygiene gymnasium
budget oxygen grudging energy
wreckage digestion
courageous messenger

You should have found that the <g> and <dg> spellings of [j] follow the normal pattern for soft <g>: They are always followed by either <e>, <\mathrm{i}>, or <y>. The <dg> spelling is like a double soft <g>: It always has a short vowel in front of it, just as the VCC pattern calls for.

4. When there is a long vowel right in front of the [j], how is the [j] spelled, <g> or <dg>? <g>. When there is a short vowel right in front of the [j], how is the [j] spelled, <g> or <dg>? <dg>. When the [j] is spelled <g>, which letters always follow the <g>? <e>, <i>, or <y> . Does the spelling <j> usually come at the front, in the middle, or at the end of an element? At the front Does <dg> ever come at the front of a word? No

5. The <d> spelling of [j] is very rare. Find the two words from the list above in which [j] is spelled <dj>. Analyze them into prefix plus stem to show where the <dj> comes from:

Word with [j] spelled <dj> Analysis: Prefix + stem
adjective ad + jective
adjust ad + just

6. Four ways of spelling [j] are <j>, <g>, <dg>, and <dj>.

Teaching Notes.

Item 1. The students are told not to underline any final <e>'s because the <e>'s are not part of the spelling but rather part of the context that makes the <g> spelling possible.

The only known common word in which [j] is spelled <gg> is exaggerate. Its less common free base, agger “a mound; a double tide,” also has the <gg> spelling of [j]. The base agger(a\cancel{d}+ g + ger), “to carry to” carries the root meaning “to pile up.” In exaggerate the prefix ex- is an intensifier, used much the way we use a word like up, as in “She tore the dress up” vs. “She tore the dress.” So the modern meaning of exaggerate echoes its earlier senses: Notice that we still say of someone who is exaggerating that “He is really piling it on.”

Soft <g> is introduced in Lessons 37-39 of Book 3. For more on the spelling of [j] see AES, pp. 417-21.

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Date Created:

Feb 23, 2012

Last Modified:

Apr 29, 2014
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