English Jade: Practice /k/ Advanced Spellings

In this lesson, we will learn how to pronounce words spelt <qu> that are pronounced /k/. This lesson is Part Four of Four on /k/.

  • /k/ is the most diverse consonant in terms of spelling patterns
  • /k/ is often spelt with the letter ‘c’
  • a letter /k/ in a word’s spelling is always pronounced /k/

Many of the example words in this lesson are foreign loan words (they entered English via a foreign language). This is the reason their spellings are peculiar.

In most cases, <qu> spelling represents a /kw/ consonant blend:

 queen               quick                quiet                question

A woman raising her had to ask if she can ask a quick question.
Practice ‘qu’ words: ‘Can I ask a Quick Question’

Words spelt <que> are pronounced with a single /k/ sound:

 cheque             antique             unique              physique          


Practice Unusual /k/ Words: Some Examples from the Lesson Recording

Iraq: In Iraq, women are clad in burqas and nicabs

▶︎ ‘Iraq’ (n) is a country in the Middle East. Notice that all three example words in the above sentence break the spelling rule that “q is always followed by u in English”. This is because these words are from Persian / Medieval Arabic.

qwerty: thirty dirty qwerty keyboards

▶︎ ‘querty’ and ‘QWERTY’ (n; IT word) is an unusual word that refers to the standard layout of keys on an English keyboard (for typing).

quick: ask a squid a quick question

quiche: quiche recipe

▶︎ ‘quiche’ (n) is a savoury French pastry dish.

equinox: spring equinox

▶︎ One of two days per year when in the Northern Hemisphere, the day and night are of equal length.


Extend Your Learning

◼️Pronunciation of /k/ Part One HERE.

◼️Pronunciation of /k/ Part Two HERE.

◼️Pronunciation of /k/ Part Three HERE.

◼️Pronunciation of /k/ Part Four HERE.


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Jade Joddle grows your confidence and skill to shine when speaking English.

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