M is Marvelous!

Monkeys Love Marshmallows,"M, m, mmm,"

Emergent Literacy


Maci Miller


Rationale: This lesson will help children identify /m/, the phoneme represented by M. Students will learn to recognize /m/ in spoken words by the teacher who will model the how to recognize the letter m, and the corresponding sound /m/ that the letter makes. Children can find this sound after eating something delicious. ("m, m,mmm!")


Materials: Primary paper and pencil; picture cards with embedded letter M; Flash card for each student, one side has the m, m, mmm sound and the other side sad face; and tongue tickler: "Monkeys March while munching on Marshmallows"; Assessment sheet



 1. The teacher will begin by showing the letter m and see if the children know the letter. Do you know what letter this is? Right! It is the letter M. Can any of you tell me what sound it makes? Yes, this letter makes an /m/ sound! Now, I want you to close your eyes and imagine getting an ice cream cone and taking that first lick off the top, m, m, mmm! Can you all say m, m, mmm with me? They tell us to move our mouth a certain way to say words. Today we're going to work on the way we move our mouth to say the /m/ sound.


2. We have two lips and when we say the letter m, our two lips kiss each other. Let's practice. Can you say with me, "Monkeys March while munching on Marshmallows?" When we say Marshmallows what does our lips do? Say it again to yourself and freeze when you hear the /m/ sound.


3. I am going to be modeling how to find the sound /m/ in the word magic. "I felt my lips say "mmm" when I started to say magic."Mmm..aa..g..i.c magic! Now I want you to get your writing paper out. We are going to learn how to write an "m." I put my pencil at at the fence and come to the ground then I go back up and make two bumps along the fence, then I come back down and end on the ground. You try, good job!


4. Okay, let's say our tongue tickler, Monkeys March while eating Marshmallows. I want you to say it three times. Every time you hear the /m/ sound I want you to rub your tummy. Okay let's say it all together but stretching the /m/ sound. Mmmonkeys Mmmarch while munching on Mmmarshmallows. Great Job class! Okay now lets break our words down, /M/onkeys /M/arch while eating /M/arshmallows.


5. Now let's talk about some words that have an m and make an mmm sound (Pass out cards).I'm going to show pictures and say the word and I want you to put up your card on the side with the m,m,mmm sound whenever you hear the sound m, m, mmm. If you don't hear the sound, then turn your card on the sad face side. (Map, dog, monkey, girl, lamp, drink, smile)


7. Read The Animals of Farmer Jones and discuss the story.  Read it again, but have children raise their hands when they hear the /m/ sound.  List those words on the board.  Have students draw a picture of something with the /m/ sound and write a message about it using invented spelling.  Display their work.


8. For assessment, distribute picture page and have children name each picture.  Have students circle the pictures whose names have /m/.



Murray, Dr. Bruce. 2001.  The Reading Genie Website.

http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/invent/clarkel.html- Katheryn Clark

http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/illum/waldenel.html Jara Walden


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