Ally Ellison
CTRD 3710
Emergent Reading Lesson Design
The Crying Baby Sound

Rationale:  Phonemic awareness is essential to learning to read and spell words.  Children must become aware of the mouth moves, or phonemes, in words so that they will be able to decode written graphemes.  Short vowels are the toughest phonemes for children to pick up.  This lesson is will help children identify /a/ (short a).  Children will learn to hear the /a/ sound in words familiar to them.

Materials:  a blown-up photo of a baby wailing at the top of his lungs (my nephew!), copies for everyone in the class with a picture of a crying baby with the a = /a/ (short a) description, Patâs Jam, (book by Educational Insights), poster of tongue twister ãAndy and Alex asked an ant for an apple.ä, word bubble drawn above crying babyâs mouth, markers

Procedures:  1.  Introduce the lesson by telling the children that sometimes the letter a makes the /a/ sound as in when a baby cries ãaaaaaaaä.  Ask the children to make the sound with me by first looking at how my mouth is shaped and then making the sound.  Give praise when they have it.

2. ãNow letâs see if we hear the /a/ in this sentence.ä  Introduce tongue twister and exaggerate the short a sound.  Have the children repeat the sentence chorally while emphasizing the a-a-a crying baby sound.

3. Read the book Patâs Jam.  Now ask the children to repeat the short a words that were seen in the book.  Ex.  Pat, ham, rat, van, gas, pal, sad

4. Now ask the children if they hear the /a/ sound in the following words:  cat or dog, rug or mat, apple or orange, sleep or nap, etc.  Write the short a words in the bubble over the crying baby and tell the children that the baby may be crying because he wants these things.

5. Now ask the children to write the letter a by starting in the middle of the fence and the sidewalk.  Go all the way up to the fence and back around to the sidewalk where you started.  Then, bring your pencil back down to the sidewalk.  Walk around and see if any of the children need help and offer praise as I ask them to write five more aâs.

6. For assessment, have the children make the crying baby sound when I reread Patâs Jam every time they hear the short a.

Reference:  Eldredge, J. Lloyd.  Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.  Brigham Young University, Prentice Hall, New Jersey (1995) p. 61.

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