Beat the B

Heart Clip Art

Emergent literacy

Heather Tingas


The students will be able to name and recognize letters and their respective phonemes.  In this lesson, the students will learn to recognize the letter b in print and the phoneme /b/ in spoken words.  The students will practice writing the letter b as well as listen for the phonemes in spoken words. 


     Poster with tongue twister written on it: Bob and Betsy baked brown bread for Barbara's birthday, primary paper, pencils, bag of mystery objects (basketball, hat, book, cup, pillow, blanket and bear), The Butter Battle Book by Dr. Seuss and assessment worksheet with words that start with the letter b such as, baby, bat, bee, ball and butter).


   1.Write the letter b on the board.  "Can anyone tell me what letter this is?  It's the letter b!"

 2."B makes a sound that says /b/.  The letter b sounds like a heartbeat.  See! (make /b/ sound while placing one hand over heart to mimic heartbeat).  Let's try the /b/ sound together.  We hear the /b/ in ball (stretch out sound as say it).  Let's all say ball and really stretch out the /b/ sound and practice our heart beats to help us remember." 

 3."Now let's try to listen for /b/ in some words.  Listen to me first.  When I say bad and naughty, do I hear the /b/ sound in bbbbad or naughty?  I hear it in bad because I could really stretch out the /b/!  Notice where your lips and teeth are (your lips are touching while your teeth have a space between them) when we say /b/. Our lips touch as we pop our lips apart, but our teeth never touch each other.  I will say two words and you tell me which word has the /b/ sound in it okay?  In bat or gloveCook or bakeBreakfast or lunchAdam or Brad?  Good job!"

 4."Now we're going to practice our /b/ sound using a tongue twister.  (Read from poster) Bob and Betsy baked brown bread for Barbara's birthday.  Now let's read it together.  (read again).  Now this time when we read it, we're going to really stretch out the /b/ and practice our heart beat each time we say /b/.  Listen and watch me first, okay?  Bbbbbill and Bbbbbetty bbbbbaked bbbbbrown bbbbbread for Bbbbbarbara's bbbbbaby.  Okay great, let's try that together" (repeat the same way).

5.Ask students to get out their primary paper and a pencil. "We use the letter b to spell /b/. Watch me as I write this first. To make the capital letter B: Go straight down to the sidewalk; around for his big chest, and around for his big tummy.  Let's all try it together.  Go straight down to the sidewalk; around for his big chest, and around for his big tummy.  Now, hold your paper in the air once you are finished for me to see, and once I have looked at it, I want you to make five more uppercase B's."  (Next show how to make lowercase b)  "Now we're going to learn little b.  Watch me first again.  Start at the roof, go down, b-bbounce up and around.  Now let's all try it.  Start at the roof, go down, b-bbounce up and around.  Quietly raise your paper in the air once you are done so I can look at it.  Once I have seen your paper, practice writing it the same way five more times.  Now you know that when you hear /b/ in words, you write the letter b.  And when you see the letter b, you know that it makes the /b/ sound!"

 6."Now we are going to look at some mystery objects.  I want you to raise your hand if you know what the object is.  When I call on you, you tell me the object's name and whether or not the /b/ sound is in its name, okay?  I'll show you first (pull out book).  Okay I know this is a book.  BookBbbbook Book does have the /b/ sound in it."  (Pull objects from bag: baseball, hat, book, cup, pillow, blanket, bear)

 7."Now we are going to read a book called The Butter Battle Book.  This story is about the Yooks and Zooks who just can't seem to get along.  You see, the Yooks live on one side of a great wall and they eat their bread with the butter side up.  The Zooks, who live on the other side, eat their bread with the butter side down.  Will the Yooks and Zooks ever solve this problem?  As we are reading, I want you to practice your heartbeat motion every time you hear the /b/ sound.  So when I read The Butter Battle Book, I am going to do my motion for butter, battle, and book."  Read The Butter Battle Book by Dr. Seuss, and students will do hand motions.

8.Finally, for assessment, give each student a worksheet with images on it.  The students will color the images that start with the /b/ sound and cross out the ones that do not.  (butter, ball, flowers, pants, bee, hat, bed, fish, bat, baby).



Dr Seuss. The Butter Battle Book. Random House Books for Young Readers. 1984.

Dickson, Sue. Spell, Read, and Write. How to Print Letters (handout).

Keith, Cassie.  "Hello, H!"

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