Learning how to spell in English can be really hard, but words with Magic E can help make spelling a lot easier. Most English spelling rules do not work. However, Magic E words work almost all of the time, and they are used in each of the long vowels. You may see Magic E referred to as a ‘Silent E’ or as a ‘split digraph’ as well.
Teaching your child to identify words with Magic E can be one of the most important first steps your child will make in their phonics journey. Although it can be a bit tricky at first, over time, your child will learn to spot this kind of long vowel without any trouble at all.
Once your child has mastered words with Magic E, they can begin to learn other long vowel patterns. We have written all about this on our page on English Phonics.
Learning to read isn’t easy. Teaching your child to read can be even harder. If you have any questions or need any help, feel free to take a look at all of our beginner phonics posts. If these don’t have the answer you are looking for, message us directly by clicking on the image below, and we can see how we can help you.
How Do Words with Magic E Work?
A Magic E turns a short vowel into a long vowel. The tricky part is that it is located two letters after the vowel. So it should be in this format: vowel-consonant-Magic E. There needs to be a consonant in between the vowel and the Magic E, though it doesn’t matter which consonant it is.
Here’s what it looks like:
Step 1: We have a short vowel followed by a consonant
Step 2: A Magic E is added after the consonant
Step 3: The Magic E hops the consonant
Step 4: The short vowel becomes a long vowel. The Magic E is silent.
- Magic E turns a vowel from a short vowel into a long vowel
- Magic E needs to “hop” a consonant
- Magic E is silent itself
Words with Magic E
This list should give you a solid start on the most common words your child will encounter that has a Magic E. Where it is possible, we will also point out any exceptions to the rule. This list is intended for beginners, so words are going to be chosen for their usefulness and easiness to say.
Words with Magic E – Long Vowel A
To learn more about Long Vowel A, take a look at our Long Vowel A patterns post.
Words with Magic E – Long Vowel E
To learn more about Long Vowel E, take a look at our Long Vowel E patterns post.
Words with Magic E – Long Vowel I
To learn more about Long Vowel I, take a look at our Long Vowel I patterns post.
Words with Magic E – Long Vowel O
To learn more about Long Vowel O, take a look at our Long Vowel O patterns post.
Words with Magic E – Long Vowel U
To learn more about Long Vowel U, take a look at our Long Vowel U patterns post.
Words with Magic E Spelling Exercises
One way to get kids used to the idea of Magic E words is by pairing a Magic E word with a normal word that lacks that E, so they can hear the difference. Some examples of pairs like this are:
Sam / Same
Her / Here
Tim / Time
Hop / Hope
Cut / Cute
We like to have them practice some of the spellings by making it a competition. Sound out a word and have your child spell out the word as best they can. You can use paper, a whiteboard, or a blackboard to write on.
It might be easier to start with short vowel words, and then when your child is comfortable, move into long vowel words with Magic E’s. By advancing this way through spelling, your child will come to differentiate between short and long vowel sounds. As well, they can become masters at spelling with a Magic E.
Words with Magic E Bingo
When you are practicing word recognition and reading strategies, Bingo can be a really fun game. Make sure you pre-teach the words we have used, and then randomly call out a word that is on our Bingo Sheet. We have also included a blank Bingo sheet if you want to make your own.
To win, your child will need to hear the word you say, correctly mark the word on their sheet, and collect 5 words in a row on their sheet. The middle Bingo square is free for everyone.
Words with Magic E Songs
One way you can supplement your teaching and spelling is with songs. Songs help your children learn grammar and phonics in a fun and engaging way. These songs will help your child understand what a Magic E does and some words that commonly go with Magic E’s.
The Magic E Song
Magic E – Super Phonics
Phonics Word Rap
Final Thoughts on Words with Magic E
The Magic E Rule is one of the best rules to teach your child while they are learning how to spell. It is useful and consistent. Magic E’s are also a great way to introduce your child to long vowel patterns and sounds.
If you need any help with long vowel pronunciation, take a look at our posts on long vowels. If you have any more questions, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or click on the picture below.