Rationale: To teach children how to decode and spell words using a common, two letter combination called a digraph. These letter combinations are one phoneme, made by one mouth movement, and stand for a single sound. This lesson will also assist students in reading and writing words containing the digraph /sh/. This will be taught through group involvement in a digraph game and a letterbox lesson.
Materials: Elkonin boxes, letter manipulatives (the letters a, c, e, f, h, i, l, l, p, r, s, t), small glass bowl, dicut fish with words written on them containing and not containing /sh/ (such as: sharp, fish, ball, shell, hand, ship, book …), One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss, worksheet with pictures and a single word containing /sh/ beneath them describing the picture (shark, ship, fish, spoon, pillow, dish, dog).
1. Review consonants /s/ and /h/, by stretching out the sounds and reviewing the beginning sounds of the words seal, sand, hat, hair, before blending them together.
2. Explain to the children that, Today we are going to learn about the /sh/ sound. You might say Shhhh! Quiet down! if your friends are making too much noise in school. Lets say /sh/ together. Every one put your pointer finger over your mouth and say /sh/. Did you feel the air blowing out on your finger? That is because when you say /sh/ you are putting your teeth together and blowing out of your mouth.
3. Class, does anyone know how to spell the sh sound? (Wait for a few students to respond until you come up with s and h). Very good! Even though /sh/ is spelled with two letters, did you notice that when you said it that there was only one sound? Good!
4. Ask the students which words contain the /sh/ sound, Do you hear /sh/ in fish or cup, splash or friend, shell or hat? Continue this until you have called on several students.
5. Now lets play a game. I have in front of me a fissshhh bowl containing fish with words written on them. I will catch a fish in my hand and we will read the word written in its tummy. If you hear /sh/ in the word put your finger to your lips and very quietly say Shhh! Quiet down!, but if you do not hear /sh/ clap your hands together to make some noise. Just remember we do not want to make too much noise because there are other students in classrooms around us who might not want to hear us, so clap fairly softly.
6. Great job! Now lets spell some words that have the /sh/ sound in them. Draw letterboxes on the board and demonstrate how to spell the word fish emphasizing that since the s and h together make one sound so they belong in the same letterbox.
7. Have the students spell the following words in their letterboxes she (2 boxes); fish, ship, shell, cash (3 boxes); trash (4 boxes). Then, spell each word on the board and have the students read them aloud.
8. Give everyone a copy of the book One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss. Allow the children to volutneer reading a page at a time. Have the class as a whole raise their thumb each time they hear a word containing /sh/.
Assessment: Ask the class to tell you some words that they heard in the book. Then, pass out a worksheet containing pictures described by words with /sh/ and some that do not. Have them circle the words with /sh/ and put an x on those that do not.