Syllabication is the process of dividing a word into component sounds (syllables). Syllabication helps in pronouncing words correctly.
Every syllable (unit of pronunciation) has one vowel sound. The number of vowel sounds in a word equals the number of syllables. A one syllable word is never divided.
Example: come= 1 bub bles = 2 ter ri er = 3
You must ignore the silent vowels, even though you may see two vowels in such words. Remember, two vowels next to one another can sometimes be two separate vowel sounds.
Example: late, same, live, bike, name, game, made, gave
A compound word is divided between the two words that make the compound word.
Example: out side = 2 tooth paste = 2 wall pa per = 3
Consonant blends and digraphs are never separated. Click the link below for the list of consonant
Example: rest ing = 2 bush el = 2 reach ing = 2 rath er = 2
When a word has a ck or an x in it, the word is usually divided after the ck or x.
Example: check ing = 2 tax ing =2 nick el = 2
When two or more consonants come between two vowels in a word, it is usually divided between the first two consonants.
Example: sis ter = 2 hun gry = 2
When a single consonant comes between two vowels in a word, it is usually divided after the consonant if the vowel is short. | If the vowel is long, it is usually divided before the consonant.
Example: hab it = 2 pan ic = 2 | ma jor = 2 ti ger = 2
When two vowels come together in a word, and are sounded separately, divide the word between the two vowels. | When a vowel is sounded alone in a word, it forms a syllable itself.
Example: ra di o = 3 i de a = 3 | grad u ate = 3
When a word ends in le, preceded by a consonant, the word is divided before that consonant.
Example: pur ple = 2 fum ble = 2 mid dle = 2
Except: pick le = 2 buck le = 2
A word that has a prefix is divided between the root word and the prefix. |
Example: dis count = 2 mis fit = 2 post pone = 2
When be, de, ex and re are at the beginning of a word, they make a syllable of their own.
Example: be came = 2 ex press = 2
A word that has a suffix is divided between the root word and the suffix. The suffixes able and ible form their own syllable.
Example: kind ness = 2 help less = 2 | print able = 2 convert ible = 2
When –ed comes at the end of a word, it forms a syllable only when preceded by d or t. | When a word or syllable ends in al or el, these letters usually form the last syllable.
Example: start ed = 2 end ed = 2 | an nu al = 3 lev el = 2
When ture and tion are at the end of a word, they make their own syllable.
Example: mo tion = 2 pos ture = 2
- Touch your chin while speaking. Every time your chin drop there is a new syllable.
- Drum or clap along with the syllables of the word.
Note: Dictionaries usually hyphenate according to the proper use of hyphens, not syllabication.