Unit 21: Fakes and phrasals
Phrasal verbs and misspelt words
Select a unit
- 1 Pop-ups
- 2 Hidden talents
- 3 Can't buy me love
- 4 Travellers' tales
- 5 The colleague from hell
- 6 Jurassic mystery: unpacking the past
- 7 Career changes
- 8 Art
- 9 Project management
- 10 The dog ate my homework!
- 11 The diary of a double agent
- 12 Fashion forward
- 13 Flat pack skyscrapers
- 14 Extreme sports
- 15 Food fads
- 16 Me, my selfie and I
- 17 Endangered animals
- 18 A nip and a tuck: cosmetic surgery
- 19 I'm really sorry...
- 20 Telling stories
- 21 Fakes and phrasals
- 22 Looking to the future
- 23 Becoming familiar with things
- 24 From rags to riches
- 25 Against the odds
- 26 Our future on Mars?
- 27 Where is it illegal to get a fish drunk?
- 28 Dodgy dating
- 29 Annoying advice
- 30 I'll have been studying English for thirty weeks
Simple spelling rules
When words have a letter g in them that is pronounced softly as /dʒ/, the word is always spelt with an e after the g.
advantageous, ageing, changeable, encouragement, marriageable
There is a spelling rule that says i before e except after c, for example achieve, perceive. It’s a good rule but there are spelt ei after other letters.
foreign, height, leisure, neighbour, weird
In British English, with verbs that end in a vowel before l or r, we double the final consonants when we make them into past or continuous forms.
travel – travelled, travelling.
prefer – preferred, preferring.
There is only one l at the end of adjectives ending in -ful.
grateful, hopeful, skilful
Words that begin with an s, may have a silent c after the s.
scenery, science, scissors
The verb practise, is spelt -ise in British English. The noun is spelt -ice.
There are a lot of words that end in -ence or -ance, but they are pronounced exactly the same. There is no rule for learning these.
experience, sequence, acceptance, balance
Words ending in /ʤ/
There are no English words that end in the letter j. If a word has this sound at the end the spelling will be ge.
rage, cage, huge, wedge
If the word contains a short vowel sound, the ge usually has a silent d in front.
hedge, bridge, wedge
Words ending in /v/
There are no English words that end in the letter v (except some acronyms, abbreviations or names). There will usually be an e after the v.
gave, save, have, shove
C or K
If the sound /k/ is followed by the vowel sounds /æ/, /ɒ/ or /ʌ/, the spelling of the /k/ sound will be c.
cat, cot, cut.
If /k/ is followed by /i/ or /e/, then the spelling of the /k/ sound will be k.
Words ending in the sound /k/ are spelt -ke if the sound before the /k/ is a long vowel sound.
cake, joke, strike
If the vowel sound is short and immediately before the /k/ sound the spelling will be ck.
sick, track, lock, luck
(Note the word trek is an exception to this rule)
If the word has more than one syllable and the last sound is /k/, the spelling will be c
panic, picnic, traffic
(Note the word attack is an exception to this rule)
When making a gerund or present participle of words that end in c, add k before adding ing.
panicking, picnicking, trafficking
In the middle of a word if there is a /k/ sound, the spelling will be c after a vowel sound and k after a consonant sound.
locate, correct, dictation
basket, blanket, ankle
These are words that have the same pronunciation but different spelling and meanings. There are many of these in English, for example:
allowed / aloud
break / brake
cell / sell
hear / here
its / it's
no / know
right / write
sea / see
steel / steal
their / there / they're
weight / wait
which / witch
whole / hole
Some multi-word verbs
to mess around
to behave badly
to break down
to stop working
to splash out on something
to spend a lot of money on something
to call someone back
to telephone someone again
to give in
to agree to do something after a long time without agreement
to go on about something
to talk about a particular subject repeatedly
to show someone up
to embarrass someone by pointing out things they are not good at or are doing wrong
to show up
to arrive at a place or event
Take off multi-word verbs
to take someone off
to impersonate, mimic, copy the way someone speaks
to take off
to leave the ground
to take something off
to remove an item of clothing
to take off
to become successful and popular
to take someone off
to substitute a player
to take off
to leave suddenly
to take a period of time off
to not go to work for a period of time
catch up with someone
(here) find out that somebody is doing something wrong and punish them
pull something off
do something successfully even though it is very difficult
finally be in a particular situation
use something as evidence or proof that something else is true
secretly give information to someone
wise up to something
become more aware of something unpleasant
create or start something, such as a system, process or organisation
man-made objects which are of historical interest
reason for doing something
tried his hand at
attempted to do (something) for the first time
manufacturing business that someone runs from their own home
valuable objects which are passed down through generations of the same family
gift of the gab
ability to speak with confidence
sale of items to whoever offers to pay the most
ancient Egyptian king
trick or cheat (someone)
raised sculptures on flat surfaces
writing that is used in some ancient Asian countries
the Old Bill
the police (British slang)
anger because you have to accept something you don't like
a punishment for a crime, which is delayed on condition that the person who is being punished does not commit any more crimes
to check in
arrive and officially register at a hotel
to end up
to be somewhere as your final destination
to get away
to go somewhere for a rest or on holiday
to get around
to travel to lots of places
to check (something) out
to examine something
to take (something) in
to observe and understand something
to work (something) out
to learn and understand how to do something
to ask around
to ask a number of people
to hold on
to dress up
to put on clothes for a special occasion
to shop around
to compare prices and quality of goods at a number of different shops before deciding what to buy