Interact with the Chart

The Color Vowel® Chart is more than a visual tool; it is the powerful touchstone of the Color Vowel® Approach, a collection of powerful brain-based strategies for discovering, practicing, and mastering the rhythm and sound of English.

Click on each Color to hear the vowel sound

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Learn more about each Color Vowel.

View the entire Color Vowel Yoga video series.

Our Color Vowel app is here! Blue Canoe combines AI and speech recognition with Color Vowel-infused feedback to provide users with real-time feedback on their spoken English.

Request your free trial.


The Color Vowel® Chart was created by Karen Taylor and Shirley Thompson in 1999. The charts below serve as a brief visual history of the Color Vowel Chart while providing you with continued audio-enhanced access to the vowel sounds of English.


The 4th Edition Color Vowel Chart (2015):

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The 3rd Edition (2012) Western US Chart (2012):

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Our Upcoming Events
Level 1 Color Vowel Basics
On Demand • asynchronous course

Color Vowel Basics© is an asynchronous, self-paced introduction to the Color Vowel® Approach. Complete four video-based modules and taking companion quizzes for each module at your own pace. Color Vowel Basics training fulfills one of three requirements for Level 1 certification. Learn more about Level 1 certification requirements here.

Pure English Practice (PEP) Workout
Every month • 1st and 3rd Thursdays • 10-10:30 pm ET

Practice the rhythms and sounds of English and boost your speaking confidence with Pure English Practice, a brain-based pronunciation ‘workout’ for English learners. Teachers, invite your learners! Learners, invite your teachers! PEP happens on the first and third Thursday of each month.

To attend Pure English Practice, subscribe here. After subscribing, you will receive reminders and links for our next event.

Teach English with Color Vowels: An Introduction for ESL/EFL Teachers
May 26, 2022 • Thursday 11 am-12 noon pm ET

Join Karen Taylor, co-author of the Color Vowel Approach, for an overview of this innovative, brain-based method for teaching spoken English, pronunciation, vocabulary, and reading to English learners.

Fridays@Five – English pronunciation tips for Brazilian Portuguese speakers
May 27, 2022 • Friday 5-6 pm ET

Expert panelists share insights, perspectives and tips for teaching pronunciation to Brazilian learners of English.

Topics will include:

  • Ways that Brazilian Portuguese pronunciation differs from that of Portuguese in Portugal;
  • How spelling influences Brazilian Portuguese learners’ English pronunciation;
  • Teaching tricky sounds, especially vowel sounds;
  • How the timing of Brazilian Portuguese differs from the stress-timed rhythm of English;
  • Participants’ questions!

View all of our upcoming Fridays@Five events!

Spelling Exploration: A Level 2 Core Workshop
June 1 - 22 • Wednesdays 1-2:30 pm ET

Learn how taking a sound-based approach to spelling empowers learners to notice patterns and engage in life-long language discovery.

In this 4-week online workshop, participants will:

  • Explore ‘the problem of English’ as it relates to teaching spelling in ESL/EFL contexts;
  • Gain a deeper understanding of the Color Vowel Organizer for the purpose of connecting the spoken and written word.
  • Learn how to lead learners in a sound-based “spelling exploration” through use of the Spelling Exploration Worksheet, a simple but powerful graphic organizer.
  • Gain extensive practice in the Color Vowel® word mark-up method.
  • Conduct their own spelling explorations as a means of gaining practical insight into the way English works.
Colorful Integrations: Bringing ESL/EFL textbooks to life
June 2-30, 2022 • Thursdays, 10-11:30 am ET

During this 4-week workshop with Karen Taylor and Shirley Thompson, participants will:

  • Identify the strengths and limitations of print and online materials;
  • Use Color Vowel mark-ups to enhance activities;
  • Adapt textbook activities to boost speaking practice opportunities;
  • Enhance textbook content through the use of rhythms and chants;
  • Create simple online activities enhanced with Color Vowel images and references.
Level 1 Basics and Color Vowel® Certification • Cohort 41
August 6-27, 2022 • Saturdays 9-10:30 am ET

Lynn SwandaColor Vowel Complete combines asynchronous learning with live training to immerse you in the use the Color Vowel® Approach and our pronunciation app, Blue Canoe. During this 4-week course with Karen Taylor, you will learn how to use powerful, brain-based strategies to teach learner pronunciation, vocabulary development, and oral fluency. Color Vowel Complete fulfills ALL of the requirements for Level 1 certification.

Lynn Swanda has extensive experience teaching English to non-native speakers of all ages and levels for over 25 years. She has a Master of Education in ESL and has lived and worked overseas in Belgium, Germany, Thailand, and South Korea for the majority of her teaching career where she taught in both local and international schools, as well as managing ESL departments. Currently, she resides in Oklahoma City and teaches at Oklahoma City Community College. Lynn is a Color Vowel Certified Level 2 Teacher.

Rhythm & Chants: A Level 2 Core Workshop
August 10-31, 2022 • Wednesdays, 1-2:30 pm ET

Learn how to preview, lead, and close chants with learners using existing chants and modified chants. Course participants will:

  • Learn how recognize and develop chants at the word, phrase, and sentence level;
  • Practice priming, leading and closing a chant with clear gestures;
  • Master three Color Vowel chants and their variations;
  • Implement the principles of followability, stickiness, and usefulness in their chants.
  • Learn when and how chants are most effective in a lesson.
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