7 Tips for Helping Your Student Master Short Vowel Sounds
Those Tricky Short I and Short E Sounds!
1. Divide and Conquer: Try not to teach these two phonemes back to back. In fact, it is often best to separate the introduction of short vowel sounds that weren’t previously mastered by several review lessons or lessons covering other concepts. By separating the introduction of these easily confusable sounds, students are able to gain proficiency with one before muddying the waters with a 2nd sound.
4. Pronunciation Matters: It is very important to make sure that the teacher, volunteers and any helpers are pronouncing the vowel sounds correctly. In addition to making sure the child can hear the difference, make sure the child is also saying the sounds correctly. This will prove very important when the time comes for spelling words with short vowel I and e. When initially learning short vowel sounds, avoid words ending in n and m as they can somewhat distort the short vowel sound. Later in the learning sequence, begin to include words ending in n and m as well. Articulate the word very clearly for writing. It is important to be aware of how your regional accent or the accent of your student may have an impact on pronunciation and make distinguishing between these two sounds more difficult.
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