Trying to figure out when to move from teaching short vowel words to teaching long vowel words can be a bit tricky. So when is the best time? I have found that when students have mastered reading mostClosed Syllable (short vowel family patterns), whether it is the regular or irregular patterns, then they are ready to begin reading long vowel words. Mastered means that students are reading Closed Syllable type words with good fluency speed
When beginning to teach long vowel patterned words, it is good to know that there are specifically 2 long vowel spelling patterns – the Vowel Consonant-e Syllable pattern and the Vowel Digraph/Diphthong Syllable pattern. It is critical NOT to introduce both of these long vowel patterns at once especially, to a struggling reader. They will become overwhelmed because there are so many spelling variations and sounds to the Vowel Digraph/Diphthong Syllable pattern. So it is best to first introduce just the Vowel Consonant-e Syllable pattern in such words as face, Pete, like, joke, cute. This way the spelling pattern remains constant in the Vowel Consonant-e pattern, whereas it changes in the Vowel Digraph/Diphthong pattern to such variations as ai, ay, ea, ee, ie, oa, ue, etc.
So if a student is reading all five short vowel sounds in words with 80% accuracy, then it is time to introduce the Vowel-Consonant-e Syllable pattern. The step of crossing over from reading Closed Syllable to Vowel-Consonant-e Syllable is critical because students are going from knowing 5 vowel sounds to having to know 10 vowel sounds. Some students can interchange the short and long vowel sounds with ease, but other students have to really think before they can fluently interchange the vowel sounds on a word list that contains both sounds for each vowel.
If you would like to know for sure if a student is ready, simply administer these 5 word lists: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/When-is-it-time-to-teach-long-vowel-patterned-words-3749754. If a student scores 80% on each word list, then they are ready to move on to learning Vowel-Consonant-e words.
Therefore, for the vowel -a word list, 21 words need to be read correctly to meet the goal of 80% accuracy. For the vowel -e word list, 20 words; for vowel i word list, 23 words; for vowel -o word list, 13 words, and for vowel -u word list, 20 words. I suggest that even if a student reads these lists at 80% accuracy, but their fluency is slow, then let that student spend a little bit more time on these lists in order to increase their fluency speed.
Many times, you may find that a student has mastered reading three or four of the short vowel sounds, but at the same time they are struggling with reading one or two of the other short vowel sounds. Once you administer these words lists, you will know which vowels a student can fluently read and which vowels still need reinforcement and re-teaching.
These word lists are strategically designed. They include 100+ short vowel word patterns. These word lists assessments are well worth your time to help you to know exactly where your students are performing in reading. After administering you will know whether to continue teaching short vowel sounds or begin teaching Vowel-Consonant-e vowel sounds.
I’ve attached the vowel –o word list for you to try as a sample. The rest of the lists can be purchased for just $4.00 on Teachers Pay Teachers: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/How-do-I-know-when-my-student-is-ready-to-read-long-vowel-patterned-words-3749754.
If a student has not mastered the Closed (Short) Syllable, then you may be interested in these packets:
If a student has mastered the Closed (Short) Syllable, then you may be interested in these packets:
When your students are ready to move onto reading long vowel words, you will want to read my post, Moving from Teaching Short Vowel Words to Teaching Long Vowel Words – A Critical Reading Step!