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1b - Building up the English Alphabetic Code

simple code
phonemes: (sounds)

building up the complex code

graphemes: Spelling variations which are code for the sounds (Phonics International graphemes in units 1 to 5 shown in black)

/s/ /a/ /t/ /i/ /p/ /n/ /k/ /e/ /h/ /r/ /m/ /d/ /g/ /o/ /u/ /l/ /ul/ /f/ /b/ /j/ /y/ /ai/ /w/ /oa/ /igh/ /ee/

s a t i p n c e h r m d g o u l

ss -tt -y -pp -nn k ea wh -rr

-ce -se -ed -bt -ne kn -ck ch ai

ce ci cy sc pt gn qu -ine que

-st- ps

schwa effect

f b j y ai w oa -igh ee

wr rh -mm -me -mb -dd -ed -gg gu gh wa qua alt o -ou ough -ll -le -il -al -ff ph -gh -bb bu -ge ge gi gy a u o i e ae oe -y *-y




ay wh ow -ie ea

a-e -ey eigh -ea -aigh o-e ough eau i-e ei e-e *ey *ie -ine

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/or/ /z/ /ng/ /ng k/ /v/

+ short long

or z -ng -nk v /oo/ oo /oo/ oo /k s/ -x /ch/ ch /sh/ sh /th/ th

+ unvoiced voiced

aw au -zz -s -n -nc -ve oul -ue

al -se

oar oor ore our war -ze /or/ augh

quar ough

u-e ew -ui

-ou -o


-ks -cks -kes /g z/ -gs -ggs -x /ch u/ -ture -tch ch -ti -ci -ssi
+ schwa effect

/th/ /k w/ /ou/ /oi/ /y oo/ /er/ /ar/ /air/ /eer/ /zh/

+ +

*-y *ey *ie = often a sound between /i/ and /ee/

units units

th qu ou oi u er ar air eer -si

ow oy -ue ir a -are ear -s -z


u-e ur alm -ear -ere -g

ew eu ear wor alf alv -ere -ier -ge

2nd 7th 3rd 8th

schwa effect


-our -re

Hollow letters alert the reader to various possible pronunciations. This code chart is not definitive. Add further code to the chart as required.

1-5 6-12

mainly simple code with options to extend into complex code /air/, /eer/, /zh/, split digraphs and complex code

1st 6th

4th 9th

5th 10th 11th 12th

The complexities of the English Alphabetic Code are: 1. 2. 3. One sound can be represented by one, two, three or four letters: e.g. z, sh, air, eigh One sound can be represented by different spellings: e.g. /oa/ can be: o, oa, ow, oe, o-e, ough, eau One spelling can represent multiple sounds: e.g. ough can be code for /oa/ in though, /or/ in thought, /oo/ in through, /ou/ in bough, /u/ in thorough

1b-Building up the English Alphabetic Code highlights units 1 - 5 of Debbie Hepplewhites Phonics International programme. 2b-Building up the English Alphabetic Code includes units 1 12 in black. These charts can be used for training, planning, assessment, record-keeping and tracking. There is a printable all-colour version and a plainer version of each chart.

Copyright Phonics International Ltd 2008