I have been teaching foreign students for 7 years now. I find that they all know the ABC alphabet. However, none of them ever seem to have been taught the ‘baby alphabet’ which is the first alphabet we all learn as kids in English schools. This tends to affect their ability to pronounce the vowels. So, they will be able to say A, E, I, O, U very easily, but will be unable to say a, e, i, o, u. When it comes to reading this is especially important. I have made a Youtube video to demonstrate this and can explain about how to use this when reading English. YouTube. The letter ‘e’ on the end of a word is the key to this as it will change the vowel sound in a word.
That’s great. I find sometimes with the short vowel sounds, it is easier to isolate that sound with a shorter, one syllable word. So I generally use “a as in at”, “e as in egg”, “i as in if”, “o as in on” and “u as in up”.
I think since English is a rather ‘non-phonetic’ language it’s very important to get across to any learner the difference between pronouncing or reading syllables and the one hand and separate letters on the other.