6 Syllable Types 



Syllables are the building blocks of spoken language and can be categorized into different types based on their structure.


Here are six different types of syllables:


Closed Syllables:

 A closed syllable ends with one or more consonant sound and typically has a short vowel sound.

When a closed syllable is followed by another syllable that begins with a consonant, the two consonant letters will come between the two syllables ( sum-mer,  let-ter).

In closed syllables short vowel can be followed two or more consonant letters (dill, jazz, mutt, bill, spell, floss, rattle, paddle, kiss).

In closed syllables with short vowels, when a short vowel is followed by two or more consonant letters, those consonant letters often work together to create a single sound. This is known as a consonant cluster or consonant blend.


For example:


doll – The double l creates a single l sound after the short vowel o.

rattle – The tt creates a single t sound after the short vowel a.

paddle – The dd creates a single d sound after the short vowel a.

kiss – The ss creates a single s sound after the short vowel i.

This pattern helps maintain the closed syllable structure and assists in maintaining the short vowel sound within the syllable.

The presence of a consonant cluster in a closed syllable can provide some protection for the vowel sound from the influence of suffixes. When a word has a closed syllable with a consonant cluster, the vowel sound is more likely to remain short and retain its original pronunciation even when suffixes are added.


For example:


hop (closed syllable with a short o sound) + -ing = hopping

stop (closed syllable with a short o sound) + -ed = stopped

chat (closed syllable with a short a sound) + -er = chatter

swim (closed syllable with a short i sound) + -ing = swimming







 Open Syllables:

An open syllable ends with a vowel sound and is spelled with a vowel letter. In open syllables, there is no consonant to close or protect the vowel sound, so the vowel typically remains long or pronounced as its natural sound.


Examples of open syllables in words:


so-lar – The first syllable so is open and ends with a vowel sound.

mu-sic – The first syllable mu is open and ends with a vowel sound.

mo-ney – The first syllable mo is open and ends with a vowel sound.

vo-wel – The first syllable vo is open and ends with a vowel sound.

And yes, one-syllable words like me, do, and be are also open syllables because they end with a vowel sound and are spelled with a vowel letter.

In open syllables, the vowel sound is not protected by a following consonant, so it tends to be pronounced as a long vowel sound or its natural sound.








Vowel-Consonant-E Syllables (VCe):

Vowel-Consonant-e (VCe) syllables are often referred to as magic e syllable patterns or silent e syllable patterns. These syllables are characterized by a specific spelling pattern where a single vowel letter is followed by a consonant and then the letter e (hire, ware, mute, yoke)

The magic e at the end of the syllable doesn’t make its usual sound but instead influences the preceding vowel to be pronounced with a long sound. This changes the pronunciation and meaning of the word.







Vowel Team syllables:

Vowel teams, also known as vowel digraphs, are combinations of two vowels that work together to represent a single vowel sound. The most common vowel teams include:


ee (as in meet)

ea (as in heat)

ai (as in rain)

oa (as in boat)

ou (as in out)

Vowel teams are used to represent long vowel sounds, but they consist of two vowels, not a combination of long and short vowels.

Digraphs are pairs of letters representing a single sound (consonant or vowel), and they can certainly be used in vowel teams.

For example, ea is a vowel team, but it’s also a digraph because the e and a together represent the sound /iː/.


Anglo-Saxon Words and Vowel Teams:

Anglo-Saxon words are Old English words that were used in the early history of the English language. While vowel teams are present in English words, their usage is not strictly limited to Anglo-Saxon words. Vowel teams can be found in words from various origins.


Consonant Letters in Vowel Teams:

oy, ey, ay, and ew, are indeed vowel teams, but they often involve a vowel combined with another vowel or consonant.

For example:

oy (as in boy)

ey (as in key)

ay (as in day)

ew (as in new)


Ough, augh, and igh are also examples of vowel teams, although they can have varying pronunciations based on the word.


In summary, vowel teams consist of two vowels working together to represent a single sound, typically a long vowel sound. While some vowel teams can include consonant letters like y or w, the primary idea is that they involve two vowels. These patterns are not exclusive to Anglo-Saxon words; they can be found in words from different linguistic origins.







Vowel -r syllables:

Vowel-R syllables, also known as r-controlled syllables, are an important phonics concept for students to master. In these syllables, a vowel is followed by the letter r, and the r influences the way the vowel is pronounced. The r sound changes the way the vowel is produced, creating a unique sound that is distinct from both short and long vowel sounds.


Examples of r-controlled syllables:

In the words: herd, cart, germ, turtle, and shirt – The er, ar, ur, ir combinations create unique sounds different from regular short e, a u, i or long e, a, u, i sounds.


Mastery of r-controlled syllables is important because understanding these patterns helps students accurately decode and spell words. The r sound influence on the vowel can make these words challenging for early readers and spellers. By recognizing and practicing these patterns, students can improve their reading, writing, and overall phonics skills.







Consonant C-le syllables:

Consonant-C-le syllables, also known as stable final syllables, are a specific syllable pattern that occurs at the end of words. In these syllables, the combination -cle is common, and it creates a specific sound pattern.


When the Consonant-C-le syllable is combined with an open syllable, the final consonant is not doubled.



cable – The cle combination creates a unique sound, and there’s no doubling of the consonant.

bugle – The cle combination also creates a unique sound, without doubling.


However, when the Consonant-C-le syllable is combined with a closed syllable, the final consonant is usually doubled before the -le ending.



dabble – The ble follows a closed syllable dab, and the b is doubled before the -le.

little – The tle follows a closed syllable lit, and the t is doubled before the -le.

topple – The ple follows a closed syllable top, and the p is doubled before the -le.

Mastery of these patterns can help learners better understand the pronunciation and spelling of words with Consonant-C-le syllables. It’s a helpful tool for decoding and encoding words accurately.


The given consonants are found in Cle syllables:


fle: raffle, shuffle, waffle

stle: castle, bristle, wrestle

gle: giggle, struggle, juggle

kle: ankle, sparkle, crinkle

zle: dazzle, puzzle, drizzle

ble: table, marble, nimble

tle: little, bottle, battle

cle: circle, bicycle, icicle


These examples demonstrate how various consonants are combined with -cle to create Consonant-C-le syllables in different words.









What is Six Syllable Types?

The Sound of Murmur Diphthong : AR, OR, ER, UR, IR, and YR

The Spelling patterns for the letter “y”

The Spelling patterns for the letter “o”

The Spelling patterns for the letter “u”

The Spelling patterns for the letter “a”

The Spelling patterns for the letter “i”

The Spelling patterns for the letter “e”

The Phonics rules for reading and spelling