English Class >> Syllable Rules >> How to Count Syllables >> Dividing a Word into Syllables

Syllable Division Rules

  1. Separate prefixes, suffixes, and root words

    • pre/view, work/ing, re/do, end/less, out/side
  1. Are two consonants next to each other?  Divide in between them

    • consonant = a letter that is not a vowel

    • buf/fet, des/sert, ob/ject, ber/ry, fer/ry
  1. Never split 2 consonants that (when pronounced together) make only 1 sound

    • "th", "sh", "ph", "th", "ch", and "wh"
  1. Is the consonant surrounded by vowels?

    • Does the 1st vowel have a long sound? (Like the 'i' in line)

      • Divide before the consonant.

      • ba/by, re/sult, i/vy, fro/zen, Cu/pid
    • Does the 1st vowel have a short sound? (Like the 'i' in mill)

      • Divide after the consonant.

      • rav/age, met/al, riv/er, mod/el, cur/tal
  1. Is there a 'ckle' in the word?  Divide right before the 'le'.

    • tack/le, freck/le, tick/le, buck/le
  1. Is there a 'le' (no 'ck' in front)?  Divide 1 letter before the 'le'.

    • ap/ple, rum/ble, fa/ble, ta/ble

Did You Know


cats = many cats
cat's = belongs to one cat
cats' = belongs to many cats


Learn Why


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