Syllable Breakdown

Spelling strategy: Breaking words into syllables

Syl  la  bles

To help you spell long words you can break them down into syllables. This means you break them down into little spoken chunks and each chunk is called a syllable.

Each syllable usually has a vowel in it: advertisement = ad / ver / tise / ment



Say ‘qualification’ aloud. Listen to the way it breaks into syllables: 

qua / li / fi / ca / tion  (5 syllables)

ass/is/tant  (3 syllables)

or/ gan /i / sa/ tion  (5 syllables)


Breaking words into syllables also helps you remember the silent letter(s) in the word.

Let’s look at Wednesday with that horrible silent ‘d‘ in there.

We say ‘wens day’ but spell it Wed/nes/day. 
When you need to spell it say it slowly and exaggerated, Wed  /  nes /  day, and you’ll be able to spell it every time
When you break a word down into syllables it helps you see the part of the word you need work on.


Look at the following words and how we break them down.


Check the suffixes – the endings of words in the following:

–tion,  –ment,  -ly,  -ture,  -ing


Learning suffix endings can help your visual memory for what looks right.

– ture    ad/ven/ture    fu/ture    tem/pe/ra /ture

-ly     faith/ful/ly  grate/ful/ly

-ment   com  part  ment     a/part/ment

-tion    de te ri or  a  tion    dec/or/a/tion      mul/ti/pli/ca/tion

-sion    ex/ten/sion   ap/pre/hen/sion

-ing    pre/dict/ ing      sig/ni/fy/ing