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Unit 6, Part 2: Spelling the short vowel sounds

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Unit 6: Short vowels, Part 2: o and u

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Spelling the short vowel sound /ŭ/

One more thing:

Sometimes English words contain a very weak vowel sound.

Say these words aloud and listen to the sound of the vowel in the underlined syllable:

Spell parrot
Spell lion
Spell camel
Spell zebra

Some more examples:

Spell hospital Spell travel
hospital travel

In each case, they sound like they contain a soft /u/. This is called the 'schwa' (from the Hebrew 'emptiness') because it can sound like there is no vowel there at all.

Different vowels spell the schwa sound. There are no rules. We have to remember them.
Unit 24 tells you more about them if you are interested!

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