Chugga, Chugga, Chugga, Chugga, Choo Chooooooo!

By:  S. Davis Brooks
Beginning Reading

Rational: To learn to read, children must learn the letter combinations that stand for specific mouth movements. This lesson will give the children practice in recognizing the /ch/ sound when they see the letters c and h together.

Materials:  Primary paper, pencil, chart with "Charlie is chewing on chocolate while on the Choo Choo train" written on it, a set of card with ch written on one side, a picture page with: nose, chin, car, duck, chain, chair, clip, money, beach and the book A Peach for Chad by Anna Cimochowski (Publishing company: Steck-Vaughn: 1991) ­ multiple copies.

1. Introduce lesson by explaining that when certain letters are combined they make a special sound.  "Today, we are going to talk bout the way our mouths move when we put c and h together.  They say /ch/.  Now watch the way my mouth moves when I read the word chew.  Can everyone make that sound with me?"
2. Ask students, "Have you ever heard the sound of a train?  Chugga, chugga, chugga, chugga, choo chooooooo!"  "Now lets say that together."  "Can you spot that sound in a word?"  "Lets try chip.  Ch-ch-ch-i-i-i-p-p-p.  Good!  There was the /ch/ sound, right at the beginning of the word." (It's important to tell the students that the /ch/ sound isn't always at the beginning of words.)
3. "Let's try the tongue twister written on the chart.  'Charlie is chewing on chocolate while on the Choo Choo train.'  Good!"  "Now let's say it again, but this time we are going to break the /ch/ sound off from the rest of the word.  '/ch/ arlie is /ch/ ewing on /ch/ ocolate while on the /ch/ oo, /ch/ oo train.'"
4. "Now lets take out our primary paper and pencil."  "To make a c, start a little below the fence line, come up to the fence line and make a half circle down to the sidewalk.  To make the h, start at the sky, come straight down to the sidewalk, come back up to the fence line and curve back down to the sidewalk."  (This will be modeled.)
5. Call on students to answer:  "Do you hear /ch/ in chair or table?  chocolate or peppermint?  swallow or chew?  Chuck or Don?"  (Now pass out the cards with ch written on them.)  "Lets see if you can spot the mouth movement /ch/ in some words.  Hold up your card if you hear /ch/.  Change, doodle, bench, creep, watch, choose, goose, chip, dot, hat, chomp and score."
6. Have each student read A Peach for Chad to themselves as I walk around and have them read a few sentences out loud to me.
7. For assessment, distribute the picture page.  They are to first name each picture.  Then the students will write ch under each picture whose names contain the /ch/ sound.

Murray, Dr. Bruce. 2001.  The Reading Genie Website.  Beginning reading:

Murray, Dr. Bruce.  2001.  The Reading Genie Website.  Beginning reading:

Click here to return to Challenges.