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Unit 24. Oh, No Snow!

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Consonants at the Start of Syllables

Unit 24; Part A

Some one-syllable words are just a single vowel sound (V), for example ah and eye. If we add one or more consonant sounds (C) to the beginnings of these words, they are still only one syllable. Look at these examples.
24.4.jpg
24.1.jpg

Unit 24; Part B

When there are two Cs at the start of a syllable:
  • if the first С is /s/, the second С can be any of these: /f/, /k/, /l/, /m/, /p/, /t/, /w/, /j/.
  • if the first С is any sound other than /s/, the second С can only be one of these: /l/, /r/, /w/, /j/.
When there are three Cs at the start of a syllable:
  • the first С is always /s/.

You may find some of these syllables with more than one С at the beginning difficult to say. Listen to these examples.
/s/+ C:    spell    stairs    sleep    small    snack     swim
С + /l/, /r/, /w/ or /j/:     blue    fly    dress    ground    quick    swim    view    tune
/s/ + CC:    spring    strange    square    scream 

Unit 24; Part C

When there are two or more Cs at the beginning of a syllable, many learners add a V before the first С or between the Cs. Be careful!
  • If you add a V before the first C, you may get a different word. For example, if you add a vowel before sleep, it may become asleep.
  • If you add a V between the Cs, you may get a different word. For example, if you add a vowel between /s/ and /p/ in sport, it becomes support.

Listen to the difference.

sleep
dress
street
sport
That ski.
That smile.
What snake?
  
+ extra syllable
asleep
address
a street
support
That's a key.
That's a mile.
What's an ache?

 



Exercises

flag.jpgAdd one С to the start of each word to make a new word in the pictures. Be careful: think of sounds, not spelling!  
Key. 1. lie; fly
2. lock; clock
3. rain; train
4. key; ski
5. lime; climb
6. late; plate
7. route; fruit

24.2.jpgExample:
red   bread  (red/red/+ b = bread / bred)
1    lie    
2    lock
3    rain
4    key
5    lime    
6    late    
7    route
 
flag.jpgAdd one of the sounds from the box after the consonant at the start of these words to make other words. Think of sounds, not spelling!
Key. 1. black   2. flight/fright
3. flat   4. glow/grow
5. plain/plane   6. play/pray
7. true   8. stay/slay
9. skin/spin   10. spend

/k/  /l/  /r/  /p/  /t/


Example: die  dry 
1    back _______ 
2    fight  _______   
3    far    _______
4    go    _______
5    pain  _______
6    pay  _______
7    two  _______
8    say  _______
9    sin   _______
10  send _______
 
flag.jpgListen and circle the word you hear.
Key.1. glass
2. play
3. fright
4. tooth
5. stream
6. stay
7. plane
8. smell


1   The glass / gas is green.
2    I don't want to play / pay.
3    It was a terrible fight / fright!
4    The tooth / truth is out!
5    The dirt came off in the steam / stream.
6    She didn't want to stay / say.
7    The pain / plane went down.
8    I can't sell / smell anything.
flag.jpgListen and tick the sentence or phrase you hear, A or B.
Key.1. B
2. A
3. A
4. B
5. A
6. B
7. B
8. A


A
B
1    that slow bus
2    an ice-cream
3    that spot
4    that street
5    She loves the States.
6    small stream
7    slow speech
8    straight street
That's a low bus.
a nicer cream
That's a pot.
That's a treat.
She loves the estates.
a smaller stream
a slower speech
a straighter street

Follow up: Record yourself saying the phrases and sentences in 4, choosing A or В each time. Make a note of which sentence or phrase you say. Then listen to your recording in about two weeks. Is it clear which you said?


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