The Spelling Rules for Adding Suffixes:
When do you drop the letter e ?
When do you keep the letter e ?

Teaching point - learning to spell Sometimes we need to drop the letter e:

English spelling
 
date + ing = dating froze + en = frozen shine + y = shiny
 
English spelling
English spelling English spelling

THE 'DROP E' RULE, PART 1:
If you add a vowel suffix to a word that ends in e, you drop the e.

If you think back to the vowel and consonant patterns you saw earlier, you will see why this rule makes sense:
think back to spelling teaching One way to make a vowel sound long is to put e on the end:
tap, tape bit, bite cod, code tub, tube

In two-syllable words, the first vowel is usually long if there is only one consonant between it and the next vowel:
paper even pilot robot music

In the word tape, the e on the end makes tap say tape. When you add -ing, to make taping, the vowel i at the start of the suffix does this job -
so you don't need the e any more.
Help spelling Rules for Adding Suffixes

Teaching point - learning to spell Sometimes you need to keep the e:

English spelling
 
hope + less = hopeless wise + ly = wisely tune + ful = tuneful
 
English spelling
English spelling English spelling

THE 'DROP E' RULE, PART 2:
If you add a consonant suffix to a word that ends in e,
you must keep the e. This is why:


In the word hope, the e on the end makes hop say hope. When you add -less, to make hopeless, the consonant l at the start of the suffix will not do the job of the e in hope - so you must keep that e. Help spelling Rules for Adding Suffixes

Now try these.
Sometimes you can drop the e; sometimes you must keep it.


Add the suffix to the root word


Type the answer

make + ing
close + ness
Dane + ish
arrive + ed
nice + ly
shame + ful
fame + ous
smoke + y
excite + ment
tune + ful
care + ing
care + less


 


Skip this exercise and go to the next part of this unit: Suffixing rule-breakers. *

* Skip link not available for logged in students.

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Unit 9: Adding suffixes: the spelling rules

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