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I always think with alternative pronunciations they can keep trying different ones in an unfamiliar word til they get the right one. This doesn't really work with spelling. Is it worth trying to teach them some rules or is it too complex? Eg this week we are looking at ways of spelling /k/. To my mind, the general ru,es are:
Usually /ck/ following a vowel sound, eg duck, sick, sack
usually /k/ following a consonant or double vowel eg. Look, speak, week, Think, link
Words rarely end in /c/ but this is usually how word start
/x/ is rare and actually makes /ks/, never at the start of the word
/q/ is rare and usually in the middle of words eg marquee
This just seems like a hell of a lot for 5/6 year olds to remember!! But then most of them know all these letters make /k/ but use them randomly with no idea when to use each one. Plus some of these rules rely on knowledge of vowels and consonants that I'm not sure they've got. And that's quite a tricky concept right? Not something I can introduce in a review part of the lesson!
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