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Long Vowel Sounds


If you struggle with spelling – you're not alone. One of the reasons why English spelling is so difficult is because of how inconsistent it is. Vowels – a, e, i, o, and u – are broken up into short and long sounds. To make things more confusing, there are also multiple ways of spelling each short and long vowel sound.

In this post, we will look at the five long vowel sounds and the different ways to spell each one.

Long A Sound
There are six ways of spelling the long a sound

  1. just the letter a, like in acorn, apron, and alien
  2. with the letters a-e, like in snake, game, and elate
  3. with the letters ai, like in train, snail, and wait
  4. with the letters ay, like in Sunday, play, and always
  5. with the letters ei, like in rein, veil, and weight
  6. with the letters ea, like in break, great, and steak

Learn more about the long a sound here.

Long E Sound
There are seven ways of spelling the long e sound

  1. just the letter e, like in evening, become, and delight
  2. with the letters ee, like in peel, breeze, and speech
  3. with the letters ea, like in dream, squeak, and reason
  4. with the letters e-e, like in here, gene, and these
  5. with the letter y, like in happy, cherry, family
  6. with the letters ie, like in field, achieve, and mischief
  7. with the letters ei, like in ceiling, receipt, and receive

Learn more about the long e sound here.

Long I sound
There are six ways of spelling the long i sound

  1. just the letter i, like in item, crisis, and silent
  2. with the letters i-e, like in bribe, reconcile, and shine
  3. with the letters igh, like in thigh, knight, and twilight
  4. with the letters ig, like in resign, design, and align
  5. with the letters y, like in apply, identify, and multiply
  6. with the letters ie, like in pie, applied, and identified

Learn more about the long i sound here.

Long O sound
There are six ways of spelling the long o sound

  1. just the letter o, like in oval, yoga, and gecko
  2. with the letters o-e, like in rose, globe, and envelope
  3. with the letters oa, like in soap, encroach, and toast
  4. with the letters ow, like in snow, meadow, tomorrow
  5. with the letters oe, like in toe, oboe, and aloe
  6. with the letters ough, like in dough, though, and although

Learn more about the long o sound here.

Long U sound
There are four ways of spelling the long u sound

  1. just the letter u, like in unicorn, future, and human
  2. with the letters u-e, like in tube, capsule, and fortune
  3. with the letters ue, like in queue, issue, and value
  4. with the letters ew, like in nephew, stew, and view

Learn more about the long u sound here.

Have a good week!


28 Jan 2019
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