Put simply, a syllable is a part of a word. When you break a word into smaller sound units, it is called syllabification. When children come across unfamiliar words, they usually break them down into smaller familiar units of sound to read them easily.

So let’s see how we can break words into sounds. The word “Television” is further broken down into

“tel”- “e”- “vi”- “sion”

The child first reads ‘tel’ (tele appears as text), then e, followed by ‘vi’ and finally ‘sion’.

Syllables always contain a vowel, either in the middle or at the end. Depending on the vowel’s position, syllables come under two types – Open Syllables and Closed Syllables.

Differences Between Open And Closed Syllables

Vowel at end of syllableConsonant at end of syllable
Long vowel soundShort vowel sound
Eg: -Pa-perEg: Rab-bit
Eg: Ma-gicEg: Pen-cil

As it is a natural decoding process, half the children under the age of 5 can easily recognize the syllables of a word. You can check our video about syllabification by clicking here! 

When children leave out syllables in the middle of a word after the age of 5, they have may have trouble recognizing sound units. Does your child miss out on syllables in the middle of a word? If you think so, please fill the form below to get a free screening and find out.

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