The Short Vowels in Arabic: Fathah, Kasrah, and Dammah

Fathah, Kasrah, and Dammah are "short" vowels in Arabic They are not letters, but marks above or below a letter. Here are some resources to teach how to read with these vowels.

Introduction to the Short Vowels

There are three short vowels in Arabic:
  1. Fathah
  2. Kasrah
  3. Dammah

14 page unit


Fathah is one of the three “short vowels” in Arabic.
Learning goals:
  • to identify the vowel fathah
  • to read the sound of fathah on each letter on the alphabet
  • to read words containing fathah
Lesson: Reading with Fathah – 37 pages; sound of fathah, reading letters with fathah, reading words with fathah; mini grammar lesson. (Link updated 11/7/2017)

Supplemental Resources
  • Fathah Drill Flashcards (fathah  with each letter of the alphabet-this is part of a short vowels practice pack) (link updated 11/7/17)


Learning goals:
  • to identify the vowel kasrah
  • to read the sound of kasrah on each letter on the alphabet
  • to read words containing kasrah


Learning goals:
  • to identify the vowel dammah
  • to read the sound of dammah on each letter on the alphabet
  • to read words containing dammah


Make a File Folder Practice Center

To aid review, make a short vowels file folder practice center:
Content Suggestions:
  • Short vowel folder title
  • Short vowel identification drills – (pages 8 and 10 of Short vowels lesson)
  • Fathah sound sort (pages 7 and 8 of Fathah Lesson)
  • Fathah with letter drills
  • Fathah Word Drills
  • Kasrah with letter drills
  • Kasrah/Fathah word drills
  • Dammah with letter drills
  • Dammah Word Drills
  • Other ideas: game boards

Putting it together:
1. Take two file folders and overlap the right side of one and the left side of the other and attach at the four corners to create a 3 panel center. Attach a folder title on the outside front cover.
2. Place materials for one short vowel on each of the three inside panels.
3. Place materials for short vowel identification on the remaining panel (it is the first exposed panel when you open the front flap.
on the right side is a short vowel identification drill (identify kasrah, dammah, fathah around the game board)
Between the right panel and the middle panel is a pocket made by the folder overlapping. You can store additional items here.

This view shows the fathah drills and cards on the left panel, kasrah cards and word drill in the middle, and dammah cards and word drills on the right panel.

Perfect for reinforcement of new concept or review!
Have the kids color to make it more fun looking (we didn’t obviously on this one) and definitely laminate the pages/cards!