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Spelling:  y and i
Flying their kite was such fun!

Spelling: y and i

Don't cry like I cried when playing this spelling quiz about the use of y and i!

Don't worry, here are some useful guidelines to help you:

  1. If a word ends in a 'consonant + y', change the 'y' to 'i' when adding an ending, e.g. 'cry-cries', 'merry-merrier/merriest', 'hurry-hurried'
  2. The final 'y' does not change to 'i' when adding the ending '-ing', e.g. 'cry-crying'
  3. If a word ends in a 'consonant + y', change the 'y' to 'ies' when forming the plural, e.g. 'baby-babies', 'lady-ladies'
  4. The letter 'y' is normally used at the end of English words instead of 'i'

Have fun in this 11-plus English quiz and watch out for the exceptions!

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1.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
marry-married
pay-payment
sloppy-sloppyness
daisy-daisies
'Sloppyness' breaks Rule 1. It should be 'sloppiness'
2.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
key-keys
fly-flies
day-days
puppy-puppys
'Puppys' breaks Rule 3. It should be 'puppies'
3.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
hobby-hobbies
fry-fried
battery-batteries
dry-driing
'Driing' breaks Rule 2. It should be 'drying'
4.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
noisy-noisier
busy-busyness
funny-funniest
sticky-stickiness
'Busyness' breaks Rule 1. It should be 'business'
5.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
healthy-healthier
joy-joiful
lazy-lazily
buy-buyer
'Joiful' is NOT covered by Rule 1 because the word 'joy' ends in a 'vowel + y': in such cases, the 'y' remains unchanged. It should be 'joyful'
6.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
play-playful
study-studious
day-dayly
greed-greediness
This is an exception: 'y' changes to 'i'. It should be 'daily'. Learn the exceptions by heart
7.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
worry-worries
fly-flying
copy-copyist
gay-gayly
This is another exception: 'y' changes to 'i'. It should be 'gaily'. Learn the exceptions by heart, e.g. 'pay-paid', 'say-said', 'lay-laid', and 'slay-slain'. These are all irregular verbs: be on the lookout for such verbs; they can wreak havoc with your spelling
8.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
shy-shiness
dreary-drearily
belly-bellies
mighty-mightiest
This is an exception. It should be 'shyness'. Learn the exceptions by heart, e.g. dryness, slyness
9.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
duty-dutiful
pretty-prettier
apology-apologys
party-parties
'Apologys' breaks Rule 3. It should be 'apologies'
10.
Which one of the following word pairs has an incorrectly spelt second word? You need only concentrate on whether it should be 'i' or 'y'.
delay-delayed
toy-toies
carry-carrier
boy-boys
'Toies' is NOT covered by Rule 1 because the word 'toy' ends in a 'vowel + y': in such cases, the 'y' remains unchanged. It should be 'toys'
Author:  Frank Evans

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