Spelling the /f/ sound with ph

Teaching point The /f/ sound is usually spelled with just f (or ff after a short vowel - see Unit 4) but words from ancient Greek use ph.    

Many of these have the same root word, for example:

Greek Word Meaning Examples
photo light photograph
photocopy
photosynthesis (the process by which plants absorb light)
graph writing photograph
paragraph
autograph
biography
geography
phonos sound headphones
earphones
telephone
microphone
saxophone
phonics (speech sounds)
sphere ball spherical
atmosphere
stratosphere

Remember these ph words by grouping them together in topic sets:

Words to do with writing learning ph words alphabet
apostrophe
hyphen
phrase
pamphlet
Medical words learning ph words physician
pharmacy
pharmacist
physics
physical
Animals learning ph words elephant
dolphin
People, characters learning ph words phantom
nephew
prophet
orphan
Pharaoh
Abstract nouns.
e.g. feelings
learning ph words triumph
phenomenon
catastrophe
emphasis
phobia

Other ph words:

trophy siphon (or syphon) typhoon Joseph  
Ralph Christopher Rudolph Philip Sophie

next part of the spelling course Go to next page: Some practice in the ph words.
Print this page
share this page:

Your current location:

Unit 5: Spelling the consonant digraphs

Page 19 of 21

Quick guide to Spellzone

Free Trial

Sign up today

Dictionary