Here is the fruit of an investigation from two of my Real Spellers, with a question for you all to think about and share any thoughts you have. Pete suggested this might be a useful thing to share here before we went straight to Old Grouch, our original plan. See what you think:
Dear Real Spellers,
We are stuck with a word problem, with the base <hypo>. We are investigating the word <hypothesis>. We came up with a word sum like this--hypo+thesis-->hypothesis. We found that <hypo> comes from Greek and means “under”. (This helped us understand the word <hypothermia>). We found that <thesis> means “place or put”. With our class, we tried to make sense of how that explains <hypothesis> -- “the idea that you place under your investigation”? We’re not so sure about this.
But then we stumbled upon the word <hypothetical>! We (Hailey and Ella) could not find a way to do a word sum for that word that fit with <hypo + thesis>. So we tried to split up <thesis> and here are the possible word sums we came up with:
<thes + is>
<the + sis>
<th + esis>
So we looked up <-sis>, then <-esis> in Etymonline and we found out that <-esis> is a suffix. We also found that <-etic> is a suffix, which explains <hypothetical>. But that meant <th> was the base, meaning is was a compound word like we first thought. Here is our matrix we made:
So…our questions are: Can there be a base <th>? We know that all English words have to have a vowel, but does every base? Or is the base <the>?
Your fellow Spellers,
Hailey and Ella