Fun with syllables

Phonological awareness is awareness of the sounds that make up words, and is an important early literacy skill.

Awareness of the syllables that make up words is a fun skill to teach. Here are some game ideas for breaking words into syllables.

Syllable awareness can be targeted in Year R and Year 1.

Feely bag (yes I love a feely bag!) – put some items into a drawstring bag, making sure there is a mix of items containing 1, 2 and 3 syllables (e.g. spoon(1), teddy(2), dinosaur(3) etc). Sitting in a small group, take turns to pick out an item and clap out the word into its syllables. Group the items by number of syllables. Return the items to the bag, clapping out each word as you go.

Jumps – instead of claps, try jumping on each syllable! Dinosaur – jump jump jump!

Building blocks – use large building blocks / Duplo and build towers for each word, for example the word ‘puzzle’ would have a tower of 2 blocks.

Hand clappers – these are great for making more noise when clapping out syllables!

Apps – If you like using the iPad with your children, there’s an app called Syllable Splash.

Pegs – Using laminated picture cards, clip pegs to the card to match the number of syllables in the word, for example the word ‘biscuit’ would have 2 pegs.

Stickers – Give each child some picture cards and some stickers. Ask them to stick their stickers on the cards, to represent the number of syllables in the words.

Drums – Get the drums out of the music box and make music by drumming out words.

Matching – Play matching games with cards with the same number of syllables.