What is a syllable wheel?

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A syllable wheel is a teaching aid that is inexpensive and easy to make and use.


It helps learners develop the following word attack skills:

  • Blending consonants and vowels into syllables
  • Breaking syllables into component parts
  • Recognizing syllable patterns
  • Recognizing symbols for consonant sounds
  • Recognizing symbols for vowel sounds.

How to make a syllable wheel


A syllable wheel is a teaching aid that allows a learner to substitute letters in a designated position in a syllable. The learner rotates an inner wheel to line up letters printed on it with letters printed on an outer wheel.


Here are the features of a syllable wheel:

  • Two circles of heavy paper: a large circle with a smaller one on top of it.
  • The two circles are fastened together in the center so that they can be rotated independently.
  • The large circle has the first letter or letters of syllables printed all around the edge.
  • The small circle has letters for the end of syllables printed around the edge.
  • The circles or “wheels” are rotated to line up the letters to make various syllables.
  • The syllable wheel may have a long “window” attached to frame a syllable as it is lined up. This focuses attention on a specific syllable and eliminates the distraction of the other letters.


Here is an example of a syllable wheel:


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Page content last modified: 8 December 1998

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