Spelling Rules for Adding "s"


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Vowel = a sound we make when the breath flows out through the mouth freely, without being blocked. The English letters a, e, i, o, u are called vowels, because they represent such sounds.

Consonant = a sound we make that is not a vowel. The breath is somehow blocked on its way out of the mouth. For example, the sound b is made when breath flow is stopped with the lips. All the other English letters which are not vowels are called consonants. These are: b, c, d, f, g, h, j, k, l, m, n, p, q, r,s, t, v, w, x, y, z. 

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Some verbs change their spelling when the letter "s" is added to them.

Verbs ending with "s", "ch", "sh", "x" or "z"

When a verb ends with s, ch, sh, x or z, we add the letter e, and then we add the letter s.

In the following examples the part before the letter s is in purple and the letters es are in red.

miss => miss + es => misses
kiss => kiss es => kisses
watch => watch es => watches
teach => teach es => teaches
wash => wash es => washes
push => push es => pushes
mix => mix es => mixes
fix => fix es => fixes
buzz => buzz es => buzzes

Verbs ending with "o"

When a verb ends with o, we add the letter e, and then we add the letter s.

In the following examples the letter o is in purple and the letters es are in red.

go => go es => goes
do => do es => does

Verbs ending with "y"

When a verb ends with y and there is a consonant before it, the y changes into ie. Then the letter s is added.

In the following examples the consonant is in blue, the part before the letter s is in green, and the letter s is in red.

fly => flie + s => flies
try => trie + s => tries
cry => crie + s => cries
study => studie + s => studies

When a verb ends with y, and there is a vowel before it, we simply add the letter s to the verb.

In the following examples the vowel is in orange, the part before the letter sis in green, and the letter s is in red.

buy => buy s => buys
say => say s => says
pay => pay s => pays
play => play s => plays
enjoy => enjoy s => enjoys

So these were the spelling rules for adding "s" in the Simple Present.

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For spelling rules on other subject visit the Spelling Rules page.

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