I Heard a Snake....

Elizabeth DeHaye
Emergent literacy

Rational:  To learn to read and spell, children must understand that letters stand for mouth moves, or phonemes.  They must know that letters spell or map out the phonemes in spoken words.  They must first be able to recognize and identify phonemes.  This lesson will help children to recognize /s/.  They will learn to recognize the /s/ in spoken words by learning the representative letter, by learning a meaningful representation (the snake sound), and by practicing identifying /s/ in spoken words.

Materials:  Primary paper and pencils; Dry erase board with primary paper type lines on it and dry erase markers; drawing paper and crayons; chart with "Sneaky Sal sold seventy-seven stinky snakes to Sam Star's silly sister Sissy"  Word List (sad, dog, fast, miss, man, love, house, soup, stop, cap, did, horse, big)

1.  Introduce lesson by reminding students that we are learning what mouth moves letters stand for.  Today we're going to work on spotting the mouth move /s/.
2.  Has anyone ever talked to a snake?  I have, and do you know what he said?  /s/!  That is the mouth move that we are working on.  You know that /s/ is in a word when you make the sound of a hissing snake.  Sometimes /s/ i s at the beginning of a word, like in sand, in the middle of a word, like in bossy, or at the end of a word, like in grass.  Stretch the word out and see if you say /s/ in bossy.  Bossssssy.  Yes, right in the middle we say /s/.
3.  Let's do a tongue twister (teacher reads chart).  "Sneaky Sold seventy-seven stinky snakes to Sam Star's silly sister Sissy."  Let's say it all together.  Now we will say it again, but we will stretch out the /s/ sounds.  Don't forget to stretch out the /s/ sounds in the middle or end of a word:  Sssneaky Sssal sssold ssseventy-ssseven ssstinky sssnakesss to Sssam Ssstar'sss sssilly sssissster Sssisssy.
4.  [Ask students to get out primary paper and a pencil].  We use the letter s to spell /s/.  Let's practice writing s.  [model on dry erase board while instructing].  Startr like you were writing a little c.  Curve up to the fence and back towards the sidewalk.  Halfway between the fence and the sidewalk, curve inthe opposite directin, touch the sidewalk, and take on step towars the fence.  I will look at everyone's s.  When I have checked your paper, I want you to practice makeing a row of s's.  when you see the letter s in a word, it is often a signal to say /s/.
6.  Call on students to answer riddles:
What do you use in the tub that starts with /s/?  soap
What do you make castles out of at the beach that starts with /s/?  sand
Who is Charlie Browns friend that starts with /s/?  Snoopy
What does a horse wear that starts with /s/?  saddle
Wha is the opposite of no and ends with /s/?  yes
What do cows eat tha ends with /s/?  grass
What little animal squeeks, eats cheese, adn ends with /s/?  mouse
Who makes the rules and ends with /s/?  boss
7.  Ask student to give words with /s/ in them and write them on the dry erase board.  Have groups of four studetns work together to make a tongue twister of /s/ words using invented spelling.  Each child makes an illustration and writes the tongue twister.  Display work.
8.  For assessment, (individually) read each word on the word list, and askt he child to say whether or not he or she hears /s/ in each word

Reference:  Eldridge, J. Lloyd, Merrill. (1995).  Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.  50-70.  Dr. Burce Murray, Auburn University:  http://www.auburn.edu/rdggenie

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