Iiiicky, Iiiicky, Stiiicky!

Valerie Loveless

It is essential for beginning readers to recognize that letters are a map of the phonemes in spoken words. This lesson will teach students to recognize, spell, and read words that contain the i=/i/ correspondence. Students will learn this correspondence through meaningful representation, as well as through practice with both spoken and written words containing the i=/i/ correspondence.




  1.  Display the poster and sentence strip for the class to see and ask the students, “Can anyone tell me what this is a picture of? It looks like this woman got icky, icky, sticky glue all over her hands! Everyone say icky, icky, sticky with me and pretend like you have something sticky on your hands, like this.” (pretend to shake the goop off of your hands) “Now I want you to do the same thing again, except stretch out the /i/ sound. Ready?”
  2. ”The letter Ii makes the icky, sticky /i/ sound. I want you all to say this tongue twister with me and listen to all the /i/ sounds you make. The important Indian was ill with injuries inside the igloo. Let’s say it one more time, this time stretch out all the /i/ sounds you hear and don’t forget to make our icky, sticky hand motion. The iiiimportant Iiiindian was iiiiill wiiiith iiiiinjuries iiiiinside the iiiiigloo. That’s very good!”
  3. Give each child a set of Elkonin boxes and letters. Model how to spell words with the i=/i/ correspondence. “I’m going to spell the first one for you to show you how to do it. The first word is fit. I’m going to stretch the word out in my mouth so I can hear all the different sounds, /ffff//iiii//tttt/. The first sound I hear is the /f/ sound, so I will put the letter f here in the first box. /ffff//iiii//tttt/, I think I hear our icky, sticky, /i/ sound next, so I will put the letter i in our second box. /ffff//iiii//tttt/, I hear the /t/ sound at the end of the word, so I will put the letter t in the last box. There, now I think I have all the sounds represented, but lets make sure, /ffff//iiii//tttt/. Yes, that’s how you spell fit! Let’s see if you can do some on your own now.”
  4. Begin the letterbox lesson. Give students one word to spell at a time while you walk around the room, checking students’ progress. If a student spells a word incorrectly, read the word the way the student spelled it and ask them to try again. Move on the next word when all students have the correct spelling. (LBL word list: 2 phonemes—{it, in, at}, 3 phonemes—{lid, him, pin, rip, hen}, 4 phonemes—{slim, fist, print}) Once all the words have been spelled, write them on the board, one at a time, and ask students to read them aloud. After letterbox lesson is completed, take up the materials.
  5. Group students into pairs and pass out a copy of Tin Man Fix It to each pair. Give a booktalk to introduce the book. “This book is about a little boy and his Tin Man friend who are planting a garden. All of a sudden, another boy zooms by on a skateboard and crashes into Tin Man, causing him to break into pieces! You will have to read on further in the book to see if Tin Man gets put back together and if the garden gets finished.”
  6. Have the students read to each other, alternating one page at a time. Monitor reading as you walk around the room.
  7. When students have finished reading, take up all books. Pass out primary paper and pencils.
  8. Ask students to write a message about their favorite sport or after school activity. While students are busy writing, have one student at a time come up and decode a list of pseudowords to you. Assess their understanding of the i=/i/ correspondence by counting the number of pseudowords they read correctly.



Heather Kenny, Yummy in my Tummy. http://www.auburn.edu/%7Emurraba/invent/kennybr.html

Shelley Horton, Icky Sticky!

Dr. Bruce Murray, The Reading Genie. http://auburn.edu/~murraba/