Graphemes and phonemes


Graphemes form the basic units of a synthetic phonics programme. A grapheme is a basic spelling unit that represents a basic sound (phoneme) in English. A grapheme may be made up of one letter, such as p, t, k, a, o, or more than one, such as ee, ow, sh, th and ph. Conversely the same phoneme may be represented by more than one grapheme. For example, the graphemes ee, ea, e, and ie represent the same phoneme.


Examples of grapheme-phoneme correspondence


The following are examples of grapheme-phoneme correspondence. Click on a grapheme to hear the phoneme that it typically represents. Note, however, that while the table contains all the basic phonemes of British English, only the most common grapheme represented by each phoneme is given here.




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