List of words with long a sounds

Long Vowel Sounds: Word Lists & Activities

Phonics | Spelling

ByDelilah Orpi

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In this post, I’m breaking down long vowel sounds (or long vowel words) to help you teach them when working with struggling readers and spellers.

Looking for long vowel word lists? Download all 5 of my pdf long vowel sounds word lists in my freebies library by joining my email list below.

What is a long vowel sound?

Long vowel sounds are vowels that are pronounced the same as their name. You’ll often hear teachers say that long vowels “say their name”.

Long vowels are very common but they can be tricky because there are so many spellings for each long vowel sound.

There are actually 4 ways to make long vowel sounds:

  1. Vowels at the end of a syllable make the long sound. For example, in the words me and halo (ha-lo) the vowels are all at the end of a syllable so they make the long sound.
  2. Silent e makes the previous vowel long. The words bike and phone have a silent e at the end that makes the previous vowel long.
  3. Vowel teams can make the long sound. Vowel teams work together to make one sound, and usually, it’s a long vowel sound. For example, boat and meat both have vowel teams that make the long sound.
  4. I or O can be long when they come before two consonants. In words like cold and mind, i and o make a long vowel sound.

Long Vowel Words

Long vowel sound words are words that have vowels that say their name. Below are a few examples:

  • Long a – baby, cake, rain, day, they, weigh
  • Long e – me, eve, hear, meet, piece, candy
  • Long i – silent, bike, light, my
  • Long o – go, home, toe, boat, snow
  • Long u – music, mule, pew, feud

Long A Sound

The long a sound can be represented by 8 different spelling patterns:

  1. a – baby
  2. a_e – cake
  3. ai – rain
  4. ay – play
  5. ei – reindeer
  6. eigh – weight
  7. ea – steak
  8. ey – they

Learn more about teaching the long a sound here, and check out my Long A Words Activities & Worksheets for printable activities.

Long E Sound

The long e sound can be represented by 8 different spelling patterns:

  1. e – be
  2. e_e – eve
  3. ee – meet
  4. ea – beach
  5. ei – protein
  6. ie – piece
  7. ey – key
  8. y – candy

For ideas, tips, and tricks when teaching the long e sound, read this post all about teaching the long e vowel sound, and check out my Long E Words Activities & Worksheets for printable activities.

Long I Sound

The long i sound can be represented by 6 different spelling patterns:

  1. i – silent
  2. i_e – shine
  3. ie – pie
  4. igh – light
  5. y – my
  6. y_e – type

You can learn more about teaching the long I sound in this post. And check out my Long I Worksheets set in my shop for printable activities on the long i sound.

Long O Sound

The long o sound can be represented by 5 different spelling patterns:

  1. o – go
  2. o_e – phone
  3. oe – toe
  4. oa – boat
  5. ow – snow

You can learn more about teaching long o words and check out my long o worksheets.

Long U Sound

The long u has two sounds: yoo (/y/ /oo/) and oo (/oo/).

The long u sound can be represented by 7 different spelling patterns:

  1. u – music
  2. u_e – mule
  3. ue – rescue
  4. eu – feud
  5. ew – few
  6. oo – food
  7. ou – soup

Learn more about teaching the long u sound here.

Tips for teaching the long vowel sounds

Teach one spelling pattern at a time!

I don’t mean one vowel sound, but just one spelling pattern. So for example, if you’re working on long a, you would work on the spelling pattern a silent e (cake, same, cave) until students have mastered it, then move on to ai, and so on. You should not be teaching multiple spelling patterns together, even though they make the same sound.

I know that most programs out there combine all the long vowel sound spelling patterns into one lesson, especially in spelling lists, but this does not work for struggling readers. You need to break it down for them and only do one at a time.

Teach the syllable types.

Because syllables have a lot to do with whether vowels make the short or long sound, if students do not already know the 6 syllable types then teach them along with the long vowel sound.

Here are resources for each syllable type:

  • closed syllable
  • open syllable
  • final silent e syllable
  • vowel team syllable
  • r combination syllable
  • consonant le syllable

Use a variety of activities to practice each spelling pattern.

Games, dictation, word sorts, memory or matching with flashcards, word hunts, textured writing, body spelling, and bingo are all fun ways to practice the long vowel sounds.

The main activity that is often overlooked is dictation. It seems so simple but the task involves listening to a word, deciding on the spelling, and transferring that info to written form. These are all skills that struggling readers need to practice.

Teach the spelling generalizations.

Some of the long vowel spelling patterns are spelling rules that make it easy to remember.

For example, ai is usually found at the beginning or middle of a syllable, and ay is usually found at the end of a syllable. [Examples: rain, aim, play, daytime]

Here is another example with long o: oa is usually found at the beginning or middle of a word, and ow is usually found at the end. [Examples: boat, coach, snow]

Long Vowel Word List

I made these word lists to help teach the long vowels. I find it handy to have these on hand when playing phonics games or planning activities for long vowel lessons.

Grab them for free below!

Visit my Teachers Pay Teachers shop to see all my literacy products.

Want to remember this? Save Long Vowel Sounds: Word Lists & Activities to your favorite Pinterest board!

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Delilah Orpi

Delilah Orpi is the founder of Thrive Literacy Corner. She has a Bachelor's degree in Special Education, a Master's degree in TESOL, and is a member of the International Dyslexia Association. She is an experienced educator and literacy specialist trained in Orton Gillingham and Lindamood Bell. Delilah creates literacy resources for educators and parents and writes to create awareness about dyslexia and effective literacy instruction based on the science of reading.

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229+ Long A Words (Free Printable List)

Grade 1 | Grade 2 | Long Vowels | Phonics | Vowels


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Learn all about the long A sound, including the 8 ways to spell long vowel A: a, a-e, ai, ay, ei, ea, eigh, and ey. Learn how to teach long A and get a FREE printable list of words with long A sounds organized by spelling pattern.

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Table of Contents

  • All About Long A
  • Long A Words
  • Tips & Suggestions
  • Related Posts
  • Download & Print

All About Long A

Teaching students all the different ways to spell long vowels will help them become more independent, confident readers:

  • Long a says /ā/ like acorn.
  • Long e says /ē/ like equal.
  • Long i says /ī/ like ice.
  • Long o says /ō/ like ocean.
  • Long u says /yoo/ like unicorn, OR /oo/ like ruler.

A is the first vowel I teach, and the long A sound can be spelled using 8 different patterns:

  • The most common spellings of long A are A, A-E, AI, and AY.
  • Less frequent ways to spell /ā/ are EI, EA, EIGH, and EY.

These patterns can be heard at the beginning, middle, or end of words. Long A can be spelled with a silent e, open syllable, or using a vowel team.

👉 For a free, complete, and printable list of 229 long A words, scroll to the bottom of this post and download it. But be sure to read all about long A first!

There are 8 ways to spell long A:

  1. a like acorn
  2. a-e like cake
  3. ai like rain
  4. ay like day
  5. ei like reindeer
  6. ea like steak
  7. eigh like eight
  8. ey like hey

Long A Words

Open Syllable Words

The letter A will say its name, or its long sound, when it is the last letter in a syllable. This is called an open syllable.

Long A sound word examples that include open syllables:


A-E Words (Long A Silent E)

The letter A will say its name when it follows a Vowel-Consonant-e (VCe) pattern. The E is magic, stays silent, and it makes the A say its name.

That is why we hear the long A sound in these words. This spelling pattern is used at the end of base words.

Long A silent E words:


AI Vowel Team Words

The vowel team AI is another way to spell long A. This is a spelling that usually comes in the middle of words.

I teach my students this jingle: “A-I in the middle says /ā/.” Make sure you say the letter names “A” and “I” when saying the jingle.

It is common to teach this spelling along with the vowel team AY (keep on reading below!).

Common words with long A in the middle, using the vowel team AI:


AY Vowel Team Words

The vowel team AY is another way to spell long A, and this pattern is used at the end of base words. I use this jingle with my students: “A Y at the end says /ā/.” (Again, make sure you say the letter names “A” and “Y” when saying the jingle.)

The great thing about this vowel team is that if they hear /ā/ at the end of a base or root word, it will most likely be spelled with AY.

Common words with long A at the end, using the vowel team AY:


EI, EA, EIGH, & EY Words (Vowel Teams)

These next four vowel teams are not commonly used to spell the long A sound. Be sure students have mastered the first four most common spellings for Long A before introducing these patterns.

Words with Vowel Team EI to spell long A:

  • reindeer
  • rein
  • vein
  • veil
  • reign
  • beige

Words with Vowel Team EA to spell long A:

  • steak
  • break
  • great
  • yea
  • breakup
  • outbreak

Words with Vowel Team EIGH to spell long A:

  • eight
  • eighty
  • eighteen
  • weigh
  • weight
  • neighbor
  • freight
  • sleigh
  • neigh

Words with Vowel Team EY to spell long A:

  • hey
  • they
  • obey
  • grey
  • prey
  • survey
  • convey
  • disobey

Tips & Suggestions

  • Before teaching long vowels, students should have a firm command of the five short vowel sounds, including all consonants, blends, and digraphs.
  • Be sure to explicitly teach these long A patterns one at a time, in sequential order.
  • Use a variety of activities to teach these long A spellings! Hands-on activities and multisensory activities are best.
  • Get the rest of the printable Long Vowel Word Lists: Long E, Long I, Long O, and Long U!

Related Posts

  • Long Vowel Anchor Chart
  • Printable Long & Short Vowel Sorts
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Pronunciation of English sounds: æ, a:, ʌ. Detailed instructions.

Learning the correct English pronunciation is another challenge. The first difficulty is mastering the rules of reading, because words in English are read quite differently from how they are written. By the way, there is an excellent video about this phenomenon in our Material Library. I advise you to look!

The second difficulty: even if reading rules bounce off your teeth, and you know exactly what combination of letters - what sound means, you need to learn how to pronounce this sound. At the same time, it seems that the most “invincible” sounds for us are those that have no analogues in our language (like /w/ , /θ/, /ð/ ).

However, sounds that have “twins” in Russian turn out to be no less complex, because we, willy-nilly, replace them with our own, relatives. In this article, we will polish the pronunciation of three such sounds: / æ / , / ʌ / , / a: / .

Let's do it according to the following scheme:

  1. Let's deal with pronunciation in detail in theory;
  2. Let's practice on a special set of words and tongue twisters for the sounds of the English language; nine0028
  3. Finally, let's find an example of the use of sound in a well-known song so that it is imprinted forever in the auditory memory.

What's wrong with these sounds?

Why these sounds? Because we often replace them with one - Russian / a /, which creates our quite recognizable accent ( /æ/ can also be replaced by Russian /e/ ) .

Before starting, I will immediately make a reservation that I will not dwell on the rules of reading : the question is quite extensive, and the purpose of the article is to “train” on the correct pronunciation of the sound itself. The second caveat: the article will use British pronunciation of words (I will indicate below which words are being discussed).

Sound /æ/ - neither A nor E

It is pronounced in such words as man , that , dad , etc. This sound is called “frog” or “butterfly” for convenience, but its scientific name is “Near-Open Front Unrounded Vowel” .

How the speech apparatus works: the tongue is pushed forward, the tip of the tongue touches the lower teeth. The middle back of the tongue is slightly curved forward and upward. The distance between the jaws is significant. Throat and tongue tense. The sound is short.

Possible error: replacing the sound / æ / with / e / or / a / , although this sound is neither. If we look for parallels with Russian phonemes, then it looks more like that sound / a /, which we use after soft consonants in the shock position (compare the sound in the word P A Litse and P I Litse - agree, sounds are different!). At the same time, the corners of the lips move apart further from each other than for the word p i faces (as if you want to smile).

Another tip: prepare your mouth for the sound / e / (for example, start saying the word in e shch ), hold the speech apparatus in this position, but say the sound / a / .

If it is still difficult to understand, then I will describe one more trick: try to “push” the lower jaw down with the tip of the tongue , but at the same time remember about the “approaching smile” (the corners of the lips stretched to the sides). Happened? Approximately this position will have your articulatory apparatus when pronouncing this sound (see the picture).

At the link you will find a very useful video from Rachel's English from which this screenshot was taken. nine0038

So, we learned how to pronounce, now we need to fix the result. To do this, I propose to say a few dozen monosyllabic words with this sound. We adjust the speech apparatus to the desired position and start training:

bad /bæd/

map /mæp/

add /æd/

plan /plæn/

lamp /læmp9

fat /fæt /fæt bæk/

can /kæn/

man /mæn/

hand /hænd/

fact /fækt/

Crab/ Kræb/

Catch/ Kætʃ/

Trap/ Træp/

Stamp/ Stæmp/



Bank/ Bæŋk/


Mad / Mæd /

that / ðæt /

LaD / LQUA /

CAP / Kæp /

HAT / HQ /

Black / Blæk /

Scat / Skæt /

Rank / Rank / Rank / Rank / ræŋk/

gas /ɡæs/

rack /ræk/

Now practice your tongue twisters. Just in case, the /æ/ sound is in bold: 9 a t st a nd h a nd in h a nd.

  • A f a t c a t s a t on a m a t
  • F a t P a t h a s a f a t c a t. P a t’s f a t c a t is in P a t’s h a t. nine0028
  • I h a ve to cr a m for my ex a m.
  • In conclusion, the promised phrase from the song, which will firmly sit in your memory and will always remind you of the correct pronunciation:

    I’m the Sc a tm a n!

    Sound / ʌ / - let's find it in Russian In the linguistic people it is called “lid”, but its full name is “

    Open Mid-Back Unrounded Vowel” .

    How the speech apparatus works: the tongue is not tense, located in the central part of the oral cavity, slightly pushed back. The back of the tongue rises to the front of the soft palate up to half the distance. The sound is short.

    This time we are lucky: the sound has an analogue in Russian - it is prestressed /a/ or /o/ in words like n o went, k a koi, m a tras etc. (Compare the sounds in the word L O VE and L O VI , or G 9000 U G 9000 9000 9000 9000 nor , where /o/ is exactly in pre-strike position).

    It turns out that we do not need to learn how to pronounce this sound from scratch. Let's consolidate the result and compare this sound with the previous one (so that the information is not confused in the head). nine0003

    Now it's time to practice this sound on a set of monosyllabic words.

    BUT/ Bʌt/

    Love/ Lʌv/

    Blood/ Blʌd/

    Come/ Kʌm/

    SOME/ Sʌm/

    Much/ Mʌtʆ/

    SUCH/ SʌTʃ/


    Gun / Gʌn /

    Duck / dʌk /

    Luck / Lʌk /

    Puck / pʌk /

    DOES / DʌZ /

    Cup / Kʌp /

    UP / ʌP /

    Bus / BʌS /

    Bun / Bun / Bun / bʌn/

    Cut / Kʌt /

    Fun / Fʌn /

    NUT / NʌT /

    HUT / HʌT /

    SUM /

    Numb / Nʌm /

    Thumb / θʌm /

    Dumb / Dʌm /

    9000 Crumb/ Krʌm/

    Nun/ Nʌn/

    Done/ Dʌn/

    Son/ Sʌn/

    We fix the result with tongue twisters:

    • D OE U S U U U. o ther M o nday
    • Don't tr ou ble tr ou ble until tr ou ble tr ou bles you. It only d ou bles tr ou ble and tr ou bles o thers, too.
    • A f u nny p u ppy r u ns in fr o nt of a p u b. A fl u ffy p u ppy r u ns in fr o nt of a cl u b.

    Traditionally, a line from a song. In my opinion, the composition of Robbie Williams “Come undone” is perfect for the “lid”, where he pronounces this sound 5 times in a row at the end of the chorus:

    Because I'm sc u m. And I'm yours o n. I c o me u nd o ne.

    Sound / a: / - show your throat to the doctor0006 ,

    hard . In terms of articulation and sound, the sound resembles that which we pronounce when showing the throat to the doctor.

    How the speech apparatus works: from Russian / a / it differs in that the tongue moves further back and down and lies as flat as possible (imagine that the doctor presses the tongue with a spoon). With the correct pronunciation of the sound, you can see the soft palate in the mirror, which is impossible when pronouncing the Russian . The sound is long.

    Now let's move on to practice on a set of words. Note that this is where the differences between the British and American pronunciations will be observed. As you know, Americans replace the sound / a: / with the sound / æ / in words like dance , ask , class , etc.

    Another difference: in words like car , far , star - Americans use the short sound / a / and pronounce / r / at the end. For convenience, we will stick to the British pronunciation.

    CAR /Kɑː R /

    Star /STɑː R /

    FAR /Fɑː R /

    PARK /PɑːK /

    DARK /DɑːK /DɑːK /DɑːK /DɑːK /DɑːK /DɑːK /DɑːK /DɑːK /DɑːK /DɑːK /KLɑːS /

    DANCE /

    ask /ɑːsk/

    task /tɑːsk/

    fast /fɑːst/

    last /lɑːst/

    half /hɑːf/

    Bath / bɑːθ /

    Part / Pɑːt /

    Hard / Hɑːd /

    Glass / ɡlɑːs /

    Grass / ɡrɑːS /

    Chance / Tʃɑːns /

    Aunt / / ɑːt /

    Calm / Kɑːm /

    Laugh / Lɑːf /

    LARGE / LɑːDʒ /

    Pass / pɑːs /

    ARM / Now let's work out the sound on tongue twisters:

    • B a rbara B a rton is a rt and p a rt of the p a rty.
    • C a rs can’t be p a rked at the p a rk a fter d
    • M a rgaret and Ch a rles a re d a ncing in the g
    • M a rk's c a r's f a ster than B a rt's c a r. B a rt's c a r's sm a rter than M a rk's c a r.

    As an audio reminder, we take the chorus from unforgettable Beatles:

    Baby You Can Drive My C A R
    9000 YES Gonna Be A ST A ST 9000 9000 9000 9000 9000 RE

    Shall we start a regular column?

    So, I hope these sounds are engraved in your memory and will never be confused with each other. By the way, we decided to make such a detailed analysis of similar sounds a permanent blog column. If you are for - mark it in the comments to the post 🙂 See you soon! nine0003

    Read the continuation of the rubric at the link.

    Pronunciation of the English sound [æ]

    • Main
    • Pronunciation

    There is no sound similar to the sound [ æ ] in Russian.

    This is a short open sound. When pronouncing [ æ ], you need to pull the corners of the mouth a little to the sides, place the tongue as flat as possible in the mouth and lower the jaw quite vigorously.

    The English, of course, do not open their mouths wide, pronouncing the sound [ æ ]; they know how to lay their tongue flat in their mouth. But in order to train this sound, vigorous work of the jaw is necessary. Ideally, a very wide version of the Russian sound [ e ] with an admixture of sound [ a ] should be heard.

    This sound must be learned to pronounce correctly, so as not to confuse the "pan" - pan with the "handle" - pen.


    This is how it sounds [ æ ] in English words:

    act [ ækt ] - action bad [ bæd ] - bad
    Ann [ æn ] - Anna map [ mæp ] - map
    add [ æd ] - add family [ fæmili ] - family
    Alice [ ælis ] - Alice plan [ plæn ] - plan
    lamp [ læmp ] - lamp narrow [ nærou ] - narrow

    In the letter , the sound [ æ ] is transmitted by the letter a , which reads like [ æ ], if it is followed by one or more consonants: map, plan, cat, sand, Ann.

    Learn more


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