Vowels are the building blocks of syllables. Students need to understand which letters are vowels before they can break words into syllables. In addition, students need to know the difference between long and short vowel sounds. In this week’s Teacher Tip Tuesday, we discuss ways to teach the vowels and their sounds to set students up for success in understanding syllables.

Syllables are defined by vowel sounds. The number of syllables in a word can be determined by counting the number of vowel sounds it contains.

Remember to start with sounds

We all know that spelling in English doesn’t always line up with the way the word sounds. This is very true for vowel sounds. The long i sound (“aye”) can be spelled i_e, igh, ie, or even eye!

Before getting to spelling, help students learn which letters are vowels. Teach them what short and long vowel sounds are. Practice hearing and using vowel sounds in different ways. 

Through song

Freebie! Click here to listen to and sing the Vowel Song.

With targeted practice

Click here for a scaffolded vowel sound sorting game.

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With printable games

Click here for a printable vowel word search.

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Join us each week as we cover the scope and sequence for teaching syllables!

Looking for more Teacher Tip Tuesday content? Click here for the Effective Strategies for Teaching English Learners series, complete collection. 

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