Morphemes Are Marvelous. CONNBIDA Conference October 21, 2011 Susan Santora, M.S., F/AOGPE Director, Learning House. What is a Morpheme?. A morpheme is a smallest meaningful unit in a language. It relates meaning and ideas.
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October 21, 2011
Susan Santora, M.S., F/AOGPE
Director, Learning House
A morpheme is a smallest meaningful unit in a language. It relates meaning and ideas.
Identify how many and what are the morphemes in the words below? How do they relate meaning?
The Difference between Base and Root:
English words originate from 3 time periods:
The most common influence was from
Anglo-Saxon, Latin, and Greeklanguages.
Old English - The Angles, Saxons, and Jute tribes arrive in England and the Anglo – Saxon language becomes prominent. The language of the Vikings, Old Norse, and the Latin language are other influences
Middle English – The Norman-French invade England and Latin becomes a strong influence on English, along with French
Modern English – Exploration and colonization brought new words from many different languages and the Greek influence was strong
The most common words in printed text are:
Examples: the, and, one, of, he, this, red, cow, play, come, chest, does, pick, hook, knife, gnat, thimble
religion: angel, savior, trinity, monastery
legal system: defendant, citation, parliament
government: constitution, parliament, president
ph (graph), chas /k/ (chorus), th (athlete), medial y (cycle), silent p (psychology)
We divide words by morpheme
mis] cell/an/e [ous
dys] lex/ i/a
tact] ful [ness
un] super] vis [ed
frater] ni/za [tion
Base words that stand alone
cat desk people house
Compound words have two free morphemes
Prefixes, roots, suffixes and combining forms
Bound morphemes cannot stand alone; they must combine with other morphemes to make a word.
spectacle:spect spectator view, watch
a spectacle is something watched
juxtapose:juxta next next to
pose pose position
to juxtapose, something is placed close to something else
port = carry
…there were successive movements in France for remodeling of spelling on etymological lines. A simple example is pauvr, which was written for earlierpovre an imitation of Latin pauper. Such spellings were particularly favored in legal language, because lawyers’ clerks were paid for writing by the inch and superfluous letters provided a useful source of income.
A History of English Spelling, D.G. Scragg,(2011)
Latin and Greek morphemes are typically easier to spell than Anglo-Saxon words
-ct, pt, soft c, -tion/-sion, tas/ch/, das /j/
We spell by morphemes
discussion - /shun/ is spelled –sion because it is added to a root ending with –s or –ss
accredit – assimilated prefix accounts for the double c’s
ac = ad (to) credit: to give credit
The most difficult words to read and spell are words with derivational suffixes that make a change in the base word spelling and pronunciation. - J. Carlisle
Knowledge of Morphologically Complex Words: A Developmental Study of Older Children and Young Adolescents
by Marilyn A. Nippold, Lei Sun,
University of Oregon, Eugene
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools:Vol 39, 365-373, American Speech-Language Hearing Association