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The Consonant Sounds [f] and [v]

1. You can hear the sound [f] at the end of leaf. You can hear the sound [v] at the end of leave.

2. Usually [f] is spelled <f>, but sometimes it is spelled <ff>, sometimes <ph>, sometimes <gh>.

The sound [v] is spelled <v> — except in one word, where it is spelled <f>. Underline the letters that spell [f] and [v]:

& \text{e\underline{v}en} && \text{a\underline{f}ter} && \text{enou\underline{gh}} && \text{e\underline{v}ery} \\& \text{sa\underline{f}ely} && \text{\underline{ph}one} && \text{fi\underline{v}e} && \text{lau\underline{gh}} \\& \text{\underline{v}isitor} && \text{co\underline{ff}ee} && \text{\underline{f}urther} && \text{\underline{f}ollow} \\& \text{ga\underline{v}e} && \text{ele\underline{ph}ant} && \text{handcu\underline{ff}s} && \text{li\underline{f}e} \\& \text{\underline{f}i\underline{f}th} && \text{o\underline{f}} && \text{sti\underline{ff}} && \text{\underline{f}ather}

3. Now sort the words into these groups. One word goes into two groups:

Words With [f] Spelled <f>
safely five life
fifth further father
after follow
Words with [f] spelled <ff> Words with [f] spelled <gh> Words with [f] spelled <ph>
coffee enough phone
stiff laugh elephant
handcuffs
Words with [v] spelled <v> Word with [v] spelled <f>
even five of
visitor every
gave

4. Four ways of spelling [f] are <f>, <ff>, <gh> and <ph>

5. How Do You Spell [v]? Except in the word of, [v] is Spelled <v>

*****

Word Find. Find the twelve words that contain the sound [n]:

& \text{elephant} && \text{know} && \text{dinner} && \text{never} \\& \text{century} && \text{brown} && \text{cannot} && \text{children} \\& \text{phone} && \text{planning} && \text{running} && \text{sound}

Write the twelve words in alphabetical order:

1. brown

2. cannot

3. century

4. children

5. dinner

6. elephant

7. know

8. never

9. phone

10. planning

11. running

12. sound

Teaching Notes.

Item  5. The statement that [v] is spelled <v> except in of is a good and useful one. But it does omit some complications that you may or may not want to bring up to your students. The consonant letter <v> is a fairly new addition to our alphabet. Earlier <v> was simply a variant form of <u>, and the two were used to spell both the consonant sound [v] and various vowel sounds. It was not until the 17^{\mathrm{th}} century that our present distinction between the letters <\mathrm{u}> and <v> was firmly fixed. The constraint against doubling <v> parallels that against doubling <u>. Double <\mathrm{u}> became a separate letter, <w>, which in print actually looks like double <v>! It is this constraint against doubling <v> that leads to words like ever and never rather than *evver and *nevver. However,in a few very recent formations <vv> does occur: revved and revving from rev, itselfclipped from revolution; divvy from dividend or divide; savvy from the Spanish sabe;and flivver, of unknown origin.

A second minor spelling of [v] occurs in just three words: calve, halve, and salve, and their inflected forms, in which [v] is spelled <lv>. The reason for the <l>’s having fallen silent is not clear. Notice that the [l] persists in words like salvage and valve. For more on [v], see AES, pp. 373-77; for [f] see pp. 377-384. For the alternation between [f] and [v], as in life/live, shelf/shelves, elf/elves, wolf/wolves, half/halve, etc, see AES, pp. 374.

If you would like to have the students work with <lv>spelling of [v], you might have themdo the following worksheet:

One More Spelling of [v]

How Do You Spell [v]? Except in the word _______, [v] is spelled _____. That is a good and useful rule, but there is one other spelling of [v] that occurs in only three words. Find the three words in the following list and then fill in the blanks:

& \text{even} && \text{gave} && \text{halve}  \\& \text{Visitor} && \text{Calve } && \text{every}  \\& \text{of } && \text{five} && \text{salve}

How Do you spell [v]? Except in the words_________, _________ and ________ in which it is spelld ________ and in the word ____ in which it is spelled _____, [v] is spelled ____.

One More Spelling of [v]

How DoYou Spell [v]?

Except in the word of. [v] is spelled <v>. That is a good and useful rule, but there is one other spelling of [v] that occurs in only three words. Find the three words in the following list and then fill in the blanks:

& \text{even} && \text{gave} && \text{halve}  \\& \text{Visitor} && \text{Calve } && \text{every}  \\& \text{of } && \text{five} && \text{salve}

How Do You Spell [v]? Except in the words calve, halve, and salve in which it is spelled <lv> and in the word of in which it is spelled <f>, [v] is spelled <v>.

Teaching Note. If students should ask about the silent final <e> in calve, halve, and salve, tell them that in English we tend to avoid ending words with <v> or <\mathrm{u}> and that we sometimes use a silent final <e> to insulate, or cover up, a <v> or <\mathrm{u}> that otherwise would come at word's end. This use of <e> as an insulator is studied in Book 4, Lesson 17. Also, see AES, p. 147.

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Feb 23, 2012

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