Uhhh, Umbrella?

Samantha Dobbin

Beginning Reading Lesson



Rationale: Before becoming skillful readers, children must understand the relationship between graphemes and their phonemes.  This lesson will help children understand the correspondence u = /u/. 



White board and marker


Poster with tongue tickler: Uncle Ulmer left his Umbrella Under the rug.

Assessment: 8 x 11 sheet with picture illustrating correspondence u = /u/ (linked below)


List of the following read-aloud words: trunk, twig, skunk, snake, brush, comb, shut, open


List of letterbox words:

3: run, cub, puff, yum, not (review)

4: plug, grin (review), chug, bump, shop (review)

5: trunk


Letterboxes for each student


Letter tiles (one set for each student): b, c, f, g, h, i, k, l, m, n, o, p, r, s, t, u, y


Copy of "Fuzz and the Buzz" for each student, and one for teacher (Phonics Reader, 1990)




All text is spoken unless in parenthesis.


Today, class, we are going to learn about the letter u and the sound it makes.  The letter u makes the sound uhhh (Put finger up to chin as if you were in deep thought).  Practice that sound with me uhhhh.  Make sure to put your finger to your chin like this! (Demonstrate again).  Here is a picture that can help us remember the sound uhhh that the u makes.  Let's try one more time uhhh.  Great job!


(Hold up poster with tongue twister)   Now class, I am going to tell you a funny sentence that can help us remember the sound that u makes.  I'll say it first:  Uncle Ulmer left his Umbrella Under the rug.  Now, I am going to slow it down and I want you to listen for the uhhh sound: uuuuuncle uuuuulmer left his uuuuumbrella uuuuunder the ruuuuug.  Could you hear the uhhh sounds that time?  Now, say it with me slowly and when you hear the uhhh sound.  Remember to put your finger to your chin when you hear the uhhh sound!  Uuuuncle uuuulmer left his uuuumbrella uuuunder the ruuuug.  Great job!  Let's break off the uhhh sound in each of these words: /u/-ncle, /u/-ulmer, /u/-mbrella, /u/-nder, r-/u/-g.  Very good class!


Now, I need you to listen very closely!  I am going to say pairs of words and I want you to tell me which word has the /u/ in it:  cup or bowl, over or under, stay or stuck, shut or open. (Stop between each set of words and talk about where the /u/ is heard and then drag out the word and /u/- each time the /u/ is spoken the students should put their finger on their chin like from above).


Since we now know what the sound u makes, let's practice spelling some words in our letterboxes.  I am going to pass out your letterboxes and letter tiles.  Do not start working until I tell you to.  Now, watch me spell the word run.  (Model how to spell "run" by placing one phoneme in each box on the letterbox drawn on the white board.  Tell student the appropriate number of boxes to lay out as you tell them each of the words to spell).  Ok, now I want you to spelling these words: puff, yum, cub, not, plug, grin, chug, bump, shop, trunk (Say one word at a time and walk around to check the students' progress-  if there are common mistakes among the class, stop to talk about them before moving on to the next word).  Every one did a great job spelling these words!


Now, we are going to read some words. (Have the words they just spelled in their letterboxes written on the board and go down the list as they read them as a class)


To get some more practice with the letter u we are going to read the book "Fuzz and the Buzz."  This book is about a bear named Fuzz.  Fuzz likes to be outside and he especially likes to shake the trees.  But he forgets that there are other animals that live in the trees.  When he shakes one tree an animal gets upset and lets Fuzz know.  What kind of animal do you think this could be?  You will have to read to find out! (Pass out books to the students and let them know they can raise their hands if they need help).



As students are doing the activities described above, I will be observing them as a means of informal assessment.  For a more formal assessment, students will complete an activity sheet.  The worksheet has 10 different words that contain "u," and have various missing letters for the students to fill in.  There are also pictures that they can color after completing the words.   



Bragg, Rachel:



Guyton, Katie:




Montgomery, Morgan:





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