In spite of many jokes about the vagaries of English Language, the fundamental truth is that CORRECT PRONUNCIATION leads to CORRECT SPELLING, and vice-versa..
Once my son (at that time he was 4 years old) was writing the names of days of the week. He misspelt only one word, WEDNUSDAY.
I asked him to read the word, and he pronounced NUS as in BUS. I pointed out that it was NES as in NEST. He corrected the spelling without my help, and never made a mistake thereafter. The result was that by the time he was five years of age, he could read most words in newspapers or even in books of middle and high school with almost 80 percent accuracy. And so could he write dictations, even of words completely new to him, from the sound-syllable association concept with a high degree of accuracy. Even when he makes a mistake, it is understandable (eg, kemistry, Fisical, etc.)
The ear needs to be trained to detect subtle difference in sounds.
CORRECT SOUND, SPELLING ASSOCIATION:
(Train the ear to detect the subtle differences)
Carefully note the difference in sound between the pairs of words-
-AT, -ATE; fat, fate; hat, hate; mat, mate; rat, rate
-AN, -ANE; ban, bane; can, cane, Jan, Jane; LAN, lane; man, mane; pan, pane; van, vane
-AM, -AME; dam, dame; jam, Jame(s), Sam, same
-AR, -ARE; bar, bare; car, care; far, fare; mar, mare; par, pare; war, ware
-AL(L). -ALE; all, ale; ball, bale, gall, gale; hall, hale; mall, male; pal, pale; tall, tale;
-EL, -LE; a bell, able; tell, (bot)tle; pel(let), (sup)ple; (hy)del, (han)dle
-ET, -TE; pet, flute; met, mute; set, suite, bet, brute
-AI-, -E; sail, sale; bail, bale; gait, gate; tail, tale; mail, male
-IGH-; fight, might, bright, right, light, sight (mite, bite, (w)rite, site)
-OW-, -OWN-; crow, crown, brow, brown, tow, town
-V-, -W-; dove, down; love, low; brav(e), braw(l);
-U-, -EU-/-IU- ; nucleus, museum, genius
-IOU-, -OU-; furious, ferrous; serious, serous;
-AR/-ER, -IER; car, carrier; bar, barrier
-U-, -OO-; full, fool; rut(h), root; shut, shoot; sun, soon
-U-, -E-; nut, net; but, bet; bun, Ben; gut, get; jut, jet
-I-, -EE-/-EA-; fit, feet; hit, heat; bit, beet, (k)nit, neat; sit, seat; till, teal
-I- , -Iâ€¦E- ; bit, bite; kit, kite; sit, site; nil, Nile; till, tile; bill, bile
A, -OA-, -O-; cat, cot, coat; lad, load; got, goat, bat, bot(tle), boat; man, moan
Short and long sounds:
-E-, -EE-/-EA-; bet, beet; beat; nut, neat; set, seat; den, dean; men, mean
-E-, -A..E- ; get, gate/gait; let, late; met, mate
-I- , -EE-/-EA-; sit, seat; rid, read; bin, bean/been; sin, seen, tin, teen; dim, deem
Other sounds: -ing, -ung, -ang, -ong, -awn-, -augh-, -eau-, urt, -irt, -sci-, -tion, -sion, -gue, -ius, -ous, -ion, etc.
Listen carefully to the dictation, colour the correct spelling and rewrite in the blank space:
SOUND SPELLINGS CORRECT ANSWER
C A R E -------- car, care, cur care
F A T --------- fat, fate, feet --------------
B E T -------- but, beat, but, bait -------
MEET ---- mate, beet, hit ----------
SHIRT ---- shark, spurt, skirt, sort ------
SIT ------- sit, seat, site ----------
(Give more exercises for practice)
cat - rat, hat, mat; save - gave, pave, knave; late - hate, date, mate; pet-let, met, net; night-light, fight, right; car-bar, far, jar; etc.
Colour and rewrite the correct rhyming word:
T A L E : sail, male, tell --------
FAR : car, fare, hair ---------
P A I R : mare, tear, peer -------
(Give more exercises for practice)
Children have a very natural attraction to musical rhythms. Make use of this.
1) Once I saw a cat, sitting on a MAT, looking at a RAT, that was wearing a HAT.
2) At night, switch off the LIGHT, do not FIGHT, turn to your RIGHT.
3) Once there was a man, inside a VAN, under a FAN, selling a sauce-PAN
4) Take some rice, mix some SPICE, if it tastes NICE, then give it to the MICE.
5) In desert there's sand, but there's no water at HAND, it's such a dry LAND
6) If you fail, you'll go to JAIL, and grow a long TAIL.
7) The night was dark, I went to the PARK, I saw no LARK, but dreamt of a SHARK.
Make such rhymes of your own, or fill in the blanks with rhyming words.
The waiter served fish, in a clean ------
Inside the boat, wearing a -----, I saw a bleating ---------
Look at the pig, it is so -----
If you can sing, I'll give this gold ------
Make short your song, it so very -------
Cross the bridge, and go to the shop to buy a ------
Fill a single letter to make meaningful words:
T O N E
K I L L
T O O L
T I L E
Ans: S L O W
H I S
H E I R
H A T
H E N
Ans: T H I G H
Fill a group of two letters:
R A S H
R O W
R E A D
E R E
A T E
I N G
(Give similar exercises for practice).
MULTIPLE SOUND ASSOCIATION WITH SAME LETTER(S)
-OO- : good (like gud), but fool, soot, etc.
-C- : city, ceiling, receive, etc. but country, count, cutter, etc.
-G- : gone, gut, good, etc. but generate, geometry, general, etc.
-I- : site, kite, write, etc. but sit, kit, fit, etc. (?effect of terminal 'e')
-A- : fat, mat, cat, etc. but far, car, bar, etc.
-E- : be, me, etc. but bet, met, etc. (?effect of terminal consonant)
-U- : bus, pus, us, but, etc. but Lucy, solution, pupa, duplicate, music, etc.
Example: son, sun; coarse, course, there, their, meat, meet, reed, read; red, read; beat, beet; steel, steal; week, weak; eye, I; need, knead; knight, night; know, no; ice, eyes; site, sight; right, write; rode, road; one, won; breath, breadth; sum, some; pray, prey; break, brake; vet, wet; etc.
Write the correct spelling (the word is only dictated):
(i) My ----- reads in Class 2. We get heat and light from the ----- (sun, son)
(ii) ---- are seven days in a week. I went to --- house yesterday. (their, there)
(iii) The old man is ---- because he was ill last ----- (weak, week)
(iv) Do you ---- the answer? If yes, say it; otherwise simply say ----
(v) We often --- at the restaurant and eat rice and ---- (meat, meet)
(vi) The ----- ------- along this ------ yesterday -------. (knight, night, rode, road)
(vii) I took part in only ---- event, but I --- the first prize in it. (won, one)
(viii) Splash --- cold water in your ----- (ice, eyes)
(ix) Have you ---- the story of ----- Riding Hood? (red, read)
(x) Can you ---- the correct spelling in the ---- margin here? (write, right)
[Give more sentences like this]
Aid to Memory
Say and enjoy as jokes as illustrated below:
Tom: The Bible is read all over the world.
Bob: No, it's not!
Tom: How do you know?
Bob: I have one at home with blue cover and white pages.
The words confused are red, read.
Shopkeeper: I have no ice.
Customer: Are you blind?
The words confused are ice, eyes.
A man drenched in rain knocked on the door of a house for shelter.
Man: I am wet.
House-owner: That's great. Please see what's wrong with our pet dog.
The words confused are vet, wet.
Father (to son): My friend is a butcher. If you meet him, he'll give you some meat.
Son: Your also have a friend who sells vegetables. If I beat him, will he give me some beet?
Also make one sentence containing both the words spelt differently, yet sounding alike:
Example 1: The sight of the site of battle made Asoka sad.
Example 2: My son cannot bear the hot sun.
Example 3: The eldest son usually has the first right to perform the last rite of his deceased parents.
Example 4: The Sikh went to the hospital because he was sick.
SAME SPELLING WITH DIFFERENT MEANINGS
Examples: well, bat, cricket, wind, right, will, lie, pen, left, glass, man, rest, etc.
In the following jokes, resolve the confusion:
Boy A: A bat is a living thing!
Boy B: No, it's not. It's a nonliving thing.
Boy A: Have you never seen a bat flying?
Boy B: Only the ball flies, when hit with a bat..
Policeman: Why are you buying a pillow?
Man: Because I always lie .....
Policeman: What? You always lie? Come to the jail.
5) Fill in the blanks with the same spellings:
(a) Please sit erect; do not --- down. Always speak the truth, never tell a ---- [LIE]
(b) I want to buy a cricket ---. The ---- flies at night. [BAT]
(c) It is ----- to write with your ---- hand, not with the left hand. [RIGHT]
(d) My uncle went to meet the lawyer. I think he ---- make his ---- today. [WILL]
(e) His right hand was amputated after an accident. If he injures his --- hand as well, he will have no hands --- to work with. [LEFT]
(f) Bring me a ----- of water. Be careful, it's made of ------. [GLASS]
(g) There is no police----- to ---- the traffic. [MAN]
(h) -------, Sir, how much will it cost to dig a -------? [WELL]
(i) I could not ---- the first prize, but I got the second prize, which is in my ----- [BAG].
(j) The tired man sat down to ---, while the --- of the group moved ahead. [REST]
Classify the following words into two groups according to the sound of the middle vowel sound:
Core, bought, bone, boat, cot, sought, lost, tore, joke, more, shone, post, pot, phone, hot.
core | hot
Do the same for the following:
Full, fool, put, room, cool, should, moor, noon, took, cook, etc.
Fare, far, car, dare, hair, share, dark, mask, pair, lark
Sat, car, hat, far, jar, mat, pat, halt, jam, man, bar, bat
Late, lad, fat, male mate, fate, cat, rat, date, cane, van, can, blade, shame, ham
[Give similar groups of words]
Colour the odd one out (according to sound, not spelling):
far, calm, pass, date, jar
pair, share, car, hare, hair
(Gradually increase the number of words)
came, dame, date, vane, last, fate, mane
man, has, have, bar, pat, bank, dam, lad
Play games thus:
Say any word.
First game: Say another word with similar middle vowel sound (such as man, mat)
Second game: Say as many words starting with the same letter but having different middle vowel sounds (such as man, mate, mask, molt, moth, moon, mint, mice, etc.)
(More guidelines and activities and tools available)