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AR (car) Sound Word List

By Rodney Everson

The /ar/ sound is one of a class of four sounds often referred to as the r-controlled vowel sounds. The four sounds are /ar/ (car), /or/ (for), /er/ (her), and /err/ (merry). This class of vowel sounds has few spelling options.

Of the 7,000 words in the database constructed from a popular children’s dictionary, 56 of them are one-syllable words in which the vowel sound is /ar/. The only spelling of the /ar/ sound in one-syllable words in the database is the "ar" spelling. (Although the database doesn't include them, there are several words such as starred, charred, and scarred where the /ar/ sound is spelled "arr".)

Now, it is true that the /ar/ sound is technically two sounds, a combination of the /o/ sound in hot and the /r/ sound in run. But if every time a child sees "ar" in a word he should be saying /ar/ rather than puzzling over the sound represented by the letter "a", then it is best to teach "ar" as a digraph for an /ar/ sound. This decision is bolstered by the treatment of "ar" as a digraph in words like war. Otherwise, the letter "a" would have to represent the /oe/ sound.

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Comprehensive Word Lists

Features over 100 word lists built from 7,000 words input from a children's dictionary. Lists are organized by vowel and consonant sounds and cover most common spellings. Useful in the classroom for building curriculum aids such as short stories that emphasize specific sounds and spellings. Multisyllable words are also included, chunked according to the method taught in the OnTrack Reading Advanced Code Phonics Workbook.