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Basic Phonics Rules To Help Your Child Read.

Phonics is the process of connecting vocal language sounds with letters. To put it another way, it's the connection between what you speak and what you will read and write.

Using Phonics is an effective method of teaching young children about reading and writing. It even teaches kindergarten kids about syllables. Kids can easily improve their reading and spelling skills through Phonics based reading.

As a parent, it's your responsibility to encourage your child to review the phonics rules while reading so that they can read and write well.

Here are a few simple phonic rules you can consider while teaching phonic reading to your children for early learning of words.

Basic Phonics Rules


A word is a group of letters that work together to convey a message. In the term ‘Word’, for instance, the letters w, o, r, and d make up the term.

A vowel is a specific kind of speech sound produced by altering the shape of the upper vocal tract or area above the tongue in the mouth. Vowels are an essential part of our language.

A syllable is an element of a word which includes the word's tones (phonemes). A syllable normally contains a vowel.

A syllable can also be defined as a ‘mouthful' of a word. If you pay attention to how your jaw opens and closes as you say a phrase, you will normally find its syllables.

Every word is composed of syllables, and each syllable is made up of vowels. For example, when you teach kids to pronounce the word ‘beautiful’, the word has syllable division like beau-ti-ful. As you can see, each of the syllables does have a vowel sound.


When the letter 'e' is the last letter of a word, and the final syllable contains a vowel other than 'e,' the vowel sound is pronounced long, and the letter 'e' is silent. The term for this is vowel-consonant-e.

Try pronouncing these words with your kids - place, mute, sale, and name. You will find that 'e' at the end gives all its power to the vowel before it. You can see, 'u' in mute, 'a' in the name are long because of 'e' at the end.

FLSZ Rule:

After a short vowel, the letters f, s, z, and l are usually doubled at the end of a one-syllable word. Pass, bluff, buzz, and doll are some examples of this Fuzzle rule, also known as Floss Rule or FLSZ Rule.

Long and short sounds:

Depending on whether a consonant follows a vowel, it may produce different sounds, either short sound or long sound.

In simple words, if a consonant is present at the end and follows a vowel, then the vowel sound is short. If a consonant is not present and the word ends with a vowel, then the vowel sound is long.

For instance, when you compare me with med and she with shed, you'll be able to identify the difference between short and long sounds with respect to the following consonant's presence. Here, 'e' in me is a long letter sound, and 'e' in med is a short letter sound because of the consonant followed.


Two letters that represent one sound are simply referred to as a digraph. Think, thumb and earth are examples of consonant digraphs, Here, 'Th' in think, thumb and earth are pronounced as one. You can observe that the two consonants work together to form a new sound.

In addition to consonant digraphs, you can teach your child vowel digraphs, where the first vowel is long and the second vowel becomes silent. Words like gain, read, stain and beach are some examples. Here, you can see that 'ai' in gain and stain, 'ea' in read and beach, shows long utterance for the first vowel, whereas the other becomes silent.

Consonant Blends:

In blend, two or more consonants join together to produce a sound. The difference between digraph and blend is that in blending, the individual sound of consonants can still be heard because they are blended together. Some examples are grasp, scrub, etc.

Schwa Sound:

The sound of a vowel in an unaccented syllable is referred to as Schwa. It is an unstressed vowel that often has the ‘uh’ sound. The letter sounds 'a' in a balloon, 'i' in family, and 'u' in support are all examples of Schwa.

Few terms, such as apartment and banana, have several schwa sounds. Schwa is the language's most familiar tone.

Soft Sound and Hard Sound (c and g):

When the vowels e or i (also y) follows the letter c, it normally produces a soft sound. Examples of that are acid, infancy, and incense. With other vowels, the letter c makes a complex sound, as in call, correct, cup, cross.

Similarly, when those certain vowels succeed the letter g, it usually produces a soft sound. Examples of that are- generate, gist, and allergy. With other vowels, the letter g makes a hard sound, as in golf, pig, great, gorilla.

Exceptions :

Phonics rules govern the bulk of English vocabulary. All exceptions to these laws are known as sight words. These must be taught and recited to kids for reading and spelling.

Sight words are those words that children understand despite having to spell them aloud. Word recognition by sight aids them in becoming quicker and more articulate learners. Most sight words are hard to read and pronounce since they're not spelled in the same manner as they sound.

Sight words are just words that preschool programmes expect children to learn right away. Kindergarteners who develop a strong base of sight words become better and more fluent learners. Example - the, it, and, you, etc.

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