Open and Closed Syllables

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Syllables are simple, one for every vowel sound, so there are lots of syllables around. You can clap or tap, or feel your mouth drop! Hearing syllables is a part of phonemic awareness that can be practiced with a syllable sort mat and animal flashcards.

Open and Closed Syllables

WATCH:

pinclosed

When a vowel is followed by at least one consonant, it is closed in. It often makes a short sound, as in pin. (the vowel stops short)

openno

A vowel is open with no consonant behind. Open syllables are often long, you will find. (the vowel can go long)

Advanced phonics patterns are more powerful and follow their own guidelines: “car” makes a new sound because of Bossy R,  and so does “loud” because of the Diphthong. “Cake” and “team” both have long vowel sounds because of Silent e and Vowel Teams. WATCH this video from Jessie Ketchum.

WATCH videos and PLAY online games at the Open and Closed Syllable tutorial at Wakelet.

Please note that many online games require Flash and may not work well on some tablets and smartphones. It can be helpful to use the Firefox browser.

Examples of words with open and closed syllables at sightwordgames.

Syllable Division

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WATCH videos and play games at the Syllable Division tutorial at Wakelet

Open & Closed Vowels in Two Syllable Words

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After learning about how to divide syllables, notice that two syllable words with one middle consonant can divide after the first vowel. This leaves the first syllable open, which often has the long vowel sound. Examples: pa|per, be|gin, ti|ger, ro|bot, mu|sic. Note that there are exceptions: about 40% of the time the word splits after the middle consonant, making the first syllable closed and short. Examples: cam|el, ped|al, vis|it, rob|in. Learn more at More Ways Vowels Can Be Long.

Author: dailyplanit

I am fascinated by the process of learning to read English and the idea of gamification to make learning fun. Phonics and literacy have become my passion project. I also write about personal development, goal setting, and time management. I enjoy finding great information, combining it in new ways, and packaging it creatively.