Here we have gathered some tips and tricks to remember the rules to get the spelling correct every single time. One thing you need to keep in mind is that not every word is going to have a strict rule, there are always going to be exceptions along with irregular forms.
Hence, remember that before memorizing the following ways that can help you remember spelling easier. Most of these rules were taught to me by my online english tutor. (Thank you sir 🙂 )
For complicated spellings, use a funny memory tool
There are a lot of creative ways in which you can easily remember the spellings of irregular words with double letters or an assortment of vowels. The weirder the idea, the better! Following are some examples:
- Dessert vs Desert: I will have seconds of dessert but please no extra desert.
- Tomorrow: Tom borrows bees tomorrow.
- Address: We saw an ad for a dress at this address.
Silent ‘e’ helps a vowel say its name
A lot of the times you can determine spellings based on their pronounciation. Whenever a word ends in a consonant, a vowel, and a silent ‘e’, the vowel in that word is long. This means that the word is pronounced as that alphabet itself.
Following are some examples:
- Dud vs dude
- Fat vs fate
- Tot vs tote
- Rid vs ride
- Red vs recede
When you are next spelling a word, think if there is a silent ‘e’ in there by sunding the long or short vowel.
Whenever the two vowels go for a walk, the first one talks
Example: weave, beam, wait, moat, soar. Know more about this concept here.
Are you able or ‘ible’
Able can be used as a word alone while ‘ible’ cannot. The same can be said for their root words for 99% of the time. If you have a root word that is incomplete on its own, then you have to add ‘ible’, however, a root word is complete on its own, or is a complete word ending with ‘e’ all you have to do is drop the ‘e’ and add ‘able’. For example:
- Terrible, visible, edible, horrible, eligible, possible, incredible
- Laughable, acceptable, dependable, fashionable, suitable, comfortable
- Desirable, excusable, valuable, advisable, debatable
As we said earlier, there are always some exceptions, such as: flexible, irritable, contemptible, responsible, digestible, inevitable.
‘E’ for events and ‘A’ for actions
A lot of words can sound similar to each other but have a completely different meaning. You have to remember the correct spellings for the words that are common and sound similar to each other. For example, affect vs effect, accept vs except, and than vs then. In every one of those examples, the ‘a’ stands for the action words while ‘e’ stands for events.
The I/E rule
This is one of the most helpful and well-known spelling help phrases that you always write ‘i’ before ‘e’, except after ‘c’, or if the word sounds like an ‘a’ such as ‘neighbour and weight’
- Niece, relief, sieve, believe, yield, chief, field
- Ceiling, receive, sleigh, deceive, eight, conceit, freight, vein
- Exceptions: weird, leisure, neither, seize, either, counterfeit, height, forfeit, foreign
- ‘Cien’ exceptions: sufficient, ancient, conscience, efficient, science
Always choose the correct version of the word
All the words that are going to be mentioned below, are a result of the combination and condensing of two words using an apostrophe which will be used as a contraction. ‘They’re’ stands for they are, ‘it’s’ stands for it is, and ‘you’re’ stands for you are. Following is an explanation which will help you better understand these forms.
- It’s: It has or it is.
- Its: Possessive (to show something belongs to another) the doll had a bow on its hair.
- They’re: They are.
- Their: Possessive. Give back their chocolates.
- There: A place word which contains the word ‘here’ (‘where?’ is answered by both there and here). The ice cream shop is over there.
- To: Preposition. They went to the lake to swim.
- Too: Very or also. (the double ‘o’ represents the double emphasis on the word while pronouncing it). He was too tired to go on the trip.
- Two: Number. Two minutes remaining.
- We’re: We are.
- Where: a place word that contains the word ‘here’. Where are you right now?
- Were: Past tense of are. They were going to the lake.
- You’re: You are.
- Your: Possessive. Your hat is old.
You can always memorize the most or the spelling rules that are common. However, you need to make a habit of committing new words to your memory by using funny made up rhymes or imaginative mnemonic devices.