There are 18 vowel sounds in the English language. The five main vowels are A, E, I, O, and U. Sometimes W and Y also act as vowels. Vowel sounds can be put into the following categories:
5 Long Vowels: Long vowels are when the sound is the same as the letter name - faith, dream, smile, vote, rule.
5 Short Vowels: Short vowels are often the hardest for people to hear differentiated. They are the sounds at the beginning of the following words - Ultimate optimism, attitude is everything.
3 R-Controlled Vowels: Vowels make these sounds when paired with an R.
AR as in scarf
OR as in storm
ER, IR, and UR as in her, sir, or fur