The term "welded sounds" is derived from the Wilson Reading System, a program based on Orton-Gillingham principles to help struggling students learn about reading and language. Intended for students in second grade and higher, the Wilson Reading System identifies welded sounds as parts of a word that have their own phonetic sound where the consonants and vowels involved cannot be individually identified.
Welded sounds are groups of letters found with a word that act as a singular sound that cannot be easily divided into its individual components. Examples of these groups are, "am," "an," "ild," "ind," "ing," "ang," "all," "ink" and "onk." The simplest words that contain welded sound also contain one single consonant sound, which is easily separated from the word as an individual sound.
Single Consonant Sounds
Single consonant sounds are individual consonant letters that stand as individual sounds within a word, and are pronounced in their traditional fashions. These are the opposite of welded sounds, with examples such as the word "fang." Here, the letter "F" represents a single consonant sound, as the "F" can be readily identified from the rest of the word's phonetic sound.
In the world "fang", the sound of the letters "ang" are welded together. Rather than pronouncing each letter, this group of letters create a singular sound that cannot be broken into its individual components of the letters "A," "N" and "G." This is a welded sound--one that helps define the sound of a word as the letters work together rather than individually.
Welded sound are also known as "glued sounds." This terminology is derived from a visual teaching perspective: a welded metal object can be seen as one item, but when inspected more closely, the individual components become clear. The letters in a welded, or glued sound, operate in the same fashion. When pronounced, they operate as one unit even though they are created by individual letters.
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