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UE (cue) Sound Word List

By Rodney Everson • Updated Jun 7th, 2023

OnTrack Reading Phonics Program

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The /ue/ sound has four spellings, ue (cue), u-e (cube), u (cubed), and ew (few). None of the /ue/ spellings are commonly seen in one-syllable words and all of them can also represent the /oo/ sound.

As noted on the list page, young readers should be taught to try the /ue/ sound first when encountering the /ue/ spellings. That is because the more likely sound of those spellings is the /oo/ sound, and it is relatively easy to make the oral shift from /ue/ to /oo/. The reason is that we tend to say /oo/ for these spellings when the /ue/ sound presents a bit of a tongue twister. So they will usually end up at the correct sound while trying the /ue/ sound even if it's the /oo/ sound in the word. Going the other way, from /oo/ to /ue/, is not likely to naturally occur.

Note: In one-syllable words like cued or fused, the "ed" ending should be treated as a digraph for the /d/ sound, leaving only the letter "u" to represent the /ue/ sound. The "u" spelling is more obvious in longer words like "music," "humid," and "uniform".

Of the 7,000 words in the database constructed from a popular children’s dictionary, 21 of them are one-syllable words in which the vowel sound is /ue/.

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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.
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