Unit 1.1

Vowel digraphs

Introduction

Vowel digraphs are two vowels or semivowels that together make only one sound.

Form

A digraph is a group of two successive letters that represent a single sound. It can happen either with consonants or with vowels. In this case these are vowel digraphs, which specifies that these letters need to be vowels or semivowels.

The common vowel digraphs are:

Uppercase Lowercase Phonetics
AI / AY ai / ay /eɪ/
AU / AW au / aw /ɔː/
EA ea /ɛ/ or /i:/
EE ee /i:/
EI ei /eɪ/
EU / EW eu / ew /ju:/ or /u:/
IE ie /i:/
OA oa /oʊ/
OI / OY oi / oy  /ɔɪ/
OO oo /u:/
OU / OW ou /aʊ/ or /oʊ/
UE ue /u:/
UI / UY ui / uy /u:/ or /aɪ/
  • Diphthongs are included in these category

Example

  • AI / AY: rain, lay
  • AU / AW: pause, raw
  • EA: tea, bread
  • EE: fee
  • EI: eight
  • EU / EW: few, eutanasia
  • IE: fiend
  • OA: road
  • OI / OY: toy
  • OO: goose
  • OU / OW: clown, though
  • UE: true
  • UI / UY: suit, buy

Exercises


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