“R, R, RRRRR," Is What the Tigers Say!

Emergent Literacy Design

By: Sarah Leslie Smith



Rationale: This lesson will help children identify the letter R. The sound /r/. They will recognize the phoneme. The representation is the visual growling like a tiger and showing your claws and the sound will be the actual growling like a tiger. Students will be able to pick the /r/ sound out of words when they are spoken or heard. Students will also recognize the word in writing and be able to write words with the letter R.


Materials: 1 sheet of primary paper per child.

1 pencil per child.

Notecards with words, CARD, PAPER, RAGE, PARTNER, RAGTOP.

Board to write words from number 9 on to show students where the letters come in. Book, “Pat’s Jam”



1. Say: There are many sounds that make up our language. What language do we have? That’s right, English! Today we are going to look at one specific sound. That sound is made by the letter R. It sounds like a tiger growling. Everyone practice making their tiger “RRRRR”.


2. Now let’s pretend like we are tigers in the jungle or tigers on the football field and say “”RRRR””!! That was scary! We say RRR by closing our mouth and almost putting our teeth together with rounded lips. Our tongue curves around.


3. I am going to say a word then I will find the R in the word. I will listen for the tiger RRR. Ccccc-aaaa-rrrrr-dddd. Card. Where was it? It was carrrrd. I found it!


4.  Now you try. I will say this word and you say it and look for the RRR. PPPP-aaa-pppp-eeee-rrrr. Where was the RRR? Say it again slowly to yourselves. It’s at the end! We found it! RRR! Now growl like a tiger! Show me your fangs and your claws!


5.  Now we will learn to write the letter R. Take out primary paper and pencil. Draw a straight line with a cup around the top and a leg coming out of the cup. There you have an RRR. RRR like a tiger! Now practice writing that letter 10 times!


6.  Now write the word RAGE on your paper. Underline the RR in that word. Do the same with Partner and Ragtop. Have these words written so children can copy them.


7. Ask students if they hear R in rip or slip? What about car or map? Watch my mouth when I say the word CAR. Look for the tiger RRR.


8.  Practice reading from some pages from the book “Pat’s Jam”. Read the page with the word “rat”. Have them find the RR word. Read the page with the word “car”. Have them find the R.


9. Show them how to decide is R in a word. Show them Rap. Help them decide if it is Rap or Tap. Show them deliberately how you move your mouth to find the sound. Do the same with Run. Run or Fun? Ripe. Ripe or Pipe?


10. Assessment. Give children for them to practice. Assess as you move through the lesson. Take notes on children that seem eager and children that aren’t speaking up. You can learn a lot throughout the lesson by watching the children. Let children the worksheet. When they finish have them individually read the words and show you the RRR by making a tiger RRR .


Worksheet: http://www.kidzone.ws/kindergarten/r-begins2.htm

Book Reference: Decodable text, “Pat’s Jam”