Vowel Teams

Estimated reading: 2 minutes

The next syllable type is a vowel team. A Vowel Team (VT) is two, three, or four letters that work together to produce a vowel sound. The vowel sound may be long, short, or a diphthong (gliding monosyllabic speech sound). Here are some tips to remember when teaching vowel teams:

  • Remember to show an object when you introduce each new concept.  The vowel team “ea” for instance has many “wet” and “dinner” words.  Therefore, you could have a “feast” with “tea” and “treats”.  
  • Fill out the Vowel Team Placement Chart found in the “Masters” section of the Comprehensive OG Plus Manual. This will help them decide where a vowel team “lives” in a word which will ultimately help with spelling. 
  • During the “Teaching a New Concept” portion, be sure to practice all known spellings in the sand.  You might say: “Now you know five ways to spell this sound.  The sound is /ē/.”  They repeat the sound and spell all known ways in the sand. 

  • Teach students the skill of how to determine which way to spell a sound when you know 3 or 4 ways.  For instance, if a student knows 4 ways to spell the /ē/ sound, they should try all four ways and eliminate wrong answers to narrow it down to a good guess.  Then, they can look it up in the dictionary if they are unsure.  You can use our Multiple Spelling worksheets located in the Masters.

Remember to use the Syllable Division Teacher Guide for safe words to practice. Always model for students before providing plenty of independent practice.