Carolyn Lawton

Icky-Icky Sticky!

RATIONALE:  An understanding of the alphabetic principle is necessary for children to learn to read and spell words.  Although it is unnecessary to know the exact name of the principle, children need to realize that letters stand for phonemes and spellings serve as a map for the phonemes.  The ability to recognize phonemes is imperative for children; short vowels are probably the most important to recognize, but are also the most difficult to recognize.  This lesson is aimed at helping children recognize /i/ (short i), by giving students a memorable representation of the phoneme, as well as the actual letter “i,” and practicing the recognition of /i/ in speech.

· Tongue Twister Chart ­ Iggy spilled ink and it was icky sticky!
· Primary Paper and Pencil for each child
· Bag of objects: bib, fish (cut-out), wig, witch (cut-out), dish, baseball mitt, pill, bug, dog (cut-out), hat, sock, bell, piece of gum (“gum”)
· Tin Man Fix-It  (Book 6, Short Vowels: Phonics Readers, Educational Insights)
· Wall Display:  large letter “i” at top with room for work underneath, manila envelope at bottom of display for picture cards with /i/
· Teacher set of picture cards (larger than student sets): witch, lips, mint (peppermint), bed, lamp
· Set of picture cards for each student:  witch, lips, mint (peppermint), bed, lamp

1. Although this lesson will probably not be the initial vowel sound taught, it should still be introduced by explaining the idea that the English language is a “secret code.”  "It is important to listen for and hear certain mouth movements when people speak ­ this will help you know what letter they are saying, and it will also help you spell the words that you hear.  Remember, we talked about a baby crying and the /a/ it makes last week.  Let’s work today on spotting the mouth move /i/.  Once we talk about /i/, you’ll be able to spot it in all sorts of places!"

2. "Who has a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch today?  Well, when peanut butter and jelly gush out of our sandwich, we say that it’s icky sticky!  Let’s pretend we’re eating our sandwich (hold a “sandwich” up to your mouth) and peanut butter and jelly gush out.  Wow ­ that’s icky sticky!!!  In the words icky and sticky, we can hear the /i/ sound.  Let’s say icky sticky over and over again until I say stop." (Students say icky sticky several times out loud.)

3. "This sentence has a lot of the /i/ sound in it."  (display tongue twister chart).  "Because it has so many /i/ sounds, it is hard to say ­ we call that a tongue twister."  (read tongue twister to students) " 'Iggy spilled ink and it was icky sticky!'  Let’s all say this silly sentence 4 times together."  (read sentence in unison 4 times)  "It’s tricky isn’t it?  Let’s say it again, but this time I want us to say it VERY SLOW and stretch out every word" (model stretching the /i/ sound) ­ " 'Iiiigy spiiiiiilled iiiiiink and iiiiiiit was iiiiiicky stiiiiicky!'  When /i/ is at the beginning of a word, we can break the word apart from the /i/ sound, like this:  /I/ ggy spilled /i/ nk and /i/ t was /i/cky sticky!"  (invite students to say it with you)  "You have done a great job practicing the /i/ sound!"

4. "Let’s practice writing the letter that makes the mouth movement  /i/."  (have students take out a piece of primary paper and a pencil)  "We use the letter i to spell /i/.  Let’s write it:  start at the fence and draw a straight line down to the sidewalk, then pick up your pencil and put a dot right above the line you just drew, halfway between the fence and the roof.  I’m going to walk around and look at your letter i.  Keep making the letter i until you have 10 of them, and while you’re making them, make the /i/ mouth movement quietly." (walk around and check students’ handwriting)  "So now when you see the letter i by itself in a word, you will know to say /i/."

5. "I have a bag of surprise objects.  Some of these objects names’ have the /i/ in them, and some do not.  When I pull the object out, I want you to raise your hand if you can name the object.  Once the object is named, I want you to stand up if the name has /i/ in it, and stay seated if it does not.  Let’s do one together for practice."  (pull out the bib ­ invite students to name the object ­ stretch the name to recognize the /i/)  "Okay, I think you’re ready!" (continue to pull objects from the bag, and have students name the object and decipher the /i/ sound, place objects with /i/ sound in one pile, and without in another)

6. "I’m going to read you “Tin Man Fix-It” now.  It has a lot of words with the /i/ mouth movement!"  (read story and make predictions as it is read)  "Wow ­ that was a great story!  Let’s read it again, and when you hear a word with the /i/ in it, I want you to make the /i/ mouth movement out loud."  (check to be sure students are hearing the /i/ sound).

7. "On the primary paper that you used to make your letter i, I want you to write a short sentence about the book.  (give students the following prompts, if needed)  Have you ever had a skateboard?  Have you ever fallen on the sidewalk?  Do you want a robot?  (Post work under the “i’ display on the wall.)

8. (For assessment, do the following)  Now I’m going to give you each five cards with pictures of objects on them.  Let’s go through and name the objects together" (hold up the “teacher set” of cards and name objects).  "Now, I want you to say the name of the object to yourself quietly, and if you hear the /i/ in the name, I want you to come and drop it in the envelope under the big “i” on the wall."

Eldredge, J. L. Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.  New Jersey, Prentice Hall, Inc. (1995).

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