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Unit 26: Spelling the endings -le -al -el

Page 6 of 9

Unit 26: Word endings: -le, and exceptions e.g. -al, -el, -ol

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Page 6 of 9

Spelling the word endings le, al, el

Think back - help with spelling rules Remember, le is the most common ending after these letters:
b c d f g k p st t z

And create these letter patterns::

ble cle dle fle gle kle ple stle tle zle

Teaching point Here is some guidance to tell you when to use the alternatives al or el (but not necessarily which!):

1. Use after the letters:  m  n  r  v  w

2. Use after a consonant digraph:  sh  ch  th  qu

3. Use after a vowel in words like:  usual  fuel

The most common examples are in the three tables below:

  al el
m
Learn the Words:
Study this word list 'Look, Say, Cover, Write, Check' spelling exercise English spelling games spelling test
animal
dismal
formal
mammal
camel
enamel
n
Learn the Words:
Study this word list 'Look, Say, Cover, Write, Check' spelling exercise English spelling games spelling test
criminal
diagonal
eternal
external
final
internal
national
signal
channel
flannel
funnel
kennel
tunnel
r
Learn the Words:
Study this word list 'Look, Say, Cover, Write, Check' spelling exercise English spelling games spelling test
admiral
cathedral
coral
corporal
federal
floral
funeral
general
liberal
mineral
natural
numeral
several
barrel
cockerel
quarrel
squirrel
v
Learn the Words:
Study this word list 'Look, Say, Cover, Write, Check' spelling exercise English spelling games spelling test
carnival
festival
interval
oval
rival
bevel
drivel
gravel
grovel
hovel
level
marvel
novel
shovel
snivel
swivel
travel
w
Learn the Words:
Study this word list 'Look, Say, Cover, Write, Check' spelling exercise English spelling games spelling test
bowel
jewel
towel
trowel
vowel

  al el
ch al as a suffix (ch = /k/)
monarchal
patriarchal
satchel
qu equal sequel
sh marshal bushel
th lethal
wherewithal
brothel
Notes:
1. Odd word: menthol
2. Words ending in cial and tial, saying /shƏl/, are in Unit 30

These words have a vowel just before the final /Əl/ syllable.
The most common spelling after a vowel is al.
cereal* denial
dial
jovial
material
trial
serial*
actual
dual*
factual
gradual
manual
ritual
usual
virtual
visual
loyal
royal
A few words use el after a vowel :
cruel duel* fuel spaniel

Learn the Words:
Study this word list 'Look, Say, Cover, Write, Check' spelling exercise English spelling games spelling test
Think back - help with spelling rules Remember, that if the ending is a suffix, the ending will usually be al:

accident > accidental approve > approval betray > betrayal
coast > coastal nature > natural tide > tidal

The root word may not always be obvious:

ritual - from the root word rite, meaning ceremony

mortal - the Latin word for death is mort

dental - the Latin word for tooth is dentis

Teaching point A few words end in il. Even though this is the unstressed syllable, you can sometimes hear the /i/ sound quite clearly.

To be sure you know these words, study this list:

anvil April basil civil council* devil
evil fossil gerbil lentil nostril pencil
peril pupil stencil tranquil utensil vigil

Learn the Words:
Study this word list 'Look, Say, Cover, Write, Check' spelling exercise English spelling games spelling test

And finally :

Think back - help with spelling rules Applying suffixes to words ending le:
  1. Drop the e when you add a vowel suffix
  2. Keep the e when you add a consonant suffix

You have not completed a Learn the Words activity for each word list on this page.

When you are confident you know how to spell the words, click the arrow to continue.

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