WHAT IS a grapheme ?

Phonics, Phonemic Awareness, Decoding and Encoding, Blending and Segmenting, Fluency




illustrated cat looking at a paper


What is a grapheme?

A grapheme is a letter or a group of letters that make up a single sound. It’s the smallest unit of writing. A grapheme (letter) is used to represent a phoneme (sound). In other words, a grapheme is the written form of a sound. For example, the word tap consists of 3 graphemes ‘t’, ‘a’ and ‘p’. The word ‘trap’ consists of 4 graphemes ‘t’ ‘r’ ‘a’ and ‘p’.  

A grapheme (letter) can represent more than one phoneme (sound). For example, the letter “g” is not only for “giraffe,” but also for “get.” In both of these words, the letter “g” is pronounced differently. Further, there are even more ways to spell the “g” as in “giraffe” sound, including “g,” “j,” “gg,” and “dg.” Each sound has different spelling or graphemes.

How many graphemes are there? 

Every phoneme has more than one grapheme. There are 250 graphemes in English. The phoneme ‘t’ has five graphemes: ‘t’ ‘tt’ ‘bt’ ‘ght’ ‘ed’. Below is a chart with graphemes children are taught in school. 

Grapheme EXAMPLE

illustrated cup of tea

The letter "t" is a grapheme

more Examples of Graphemes:

"tap"  has 3 graphemes t-a-p

"trap" has 4 graphemes t-r-a-p

"trapped" has 7 graphemes t-r-a-p-p-e-d

phonemes and graphemes chart



The Bitmoji Classroom is here to stay. Classroom materials need to be more visual and exciting. Post these examples on your Bitmoji Classroom Bulletin Board or Whiteboard.

They're perfect for sharing to Google Classroom. Or save them to Google Drive and build a handy phonics folder.

On Seesaw:

Use an app like Seesaw’s record function to read examples aloud. Seesaw’s QR code function with our downloadable phonics sound chart. Perfect for parents and students who need correct pronunciation. 

Bitmoji Classroom Template

dragon looking at screaming food in fridge

Research says

Read our report on the Science of Reading (coming soon!). Research-based reading instruction must incorporate the 5 pillars of reading: phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency, vocabulary and comprehension. This report provides an easy to understand overview on phonics and phonemic awareness, why it’s important and how it’s used in the classroom.

It's perfect for sharing with colleagues, friends, and to Google Classroom!

New reading app coming soon!


Download our free sample worksheets

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Download our Parent & Educator Guide

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