Basic Components of a Phoneme Awareness Lesson

The hummingbird is the smallest bird.
    It hovers by beating its wings 50-60 times a second.  That makes a humming sound. Gesture: Fingers as wings.

3. Make an alliterative "tongue tickler." Have students stretch or split off your phoneme in the tickler.*

Example: Many mice make music.  Stretch it:  Mmmany mmmice mmmake mmmusic.

4. Lead students to study the mouth move for your phoneme. Consider using mirrors to see the mouth moves.  

Example: L stands for /l/, the light saber sound.
What's your mouth doing with /l/? Raise your light saber!
Cut /l/ in our twister: Lisa lost the lizard's large lemon. 

lightsaber5. Provide a model of how to find your phoneme in a spoken word.

Example: Let's see if hummingbird /m/ is in pump. I'll know it's there if my lips come together and hum.     P-p-p-uuu-mp. P-uuummm . . . There, in the middle they came together and I hummed. That was /m/!   We do say /m/ in pump!

6. Add phoneme-finding practice by testing spoken words.*  Have students blend the new phoneme into words.

Example: Do you hear /m/ in Mom or Dad?  In send or mail? In beef or ham?  
I'll name some food. If they have /m/ in them, go m-m-m. If they don't, say "yuck." Ham, fish, lima beans, ice cream, cereal, chocolate cake, marshmallows.
What am I saying: roo-m? crea-m? sli-me
What am I saying: m-oon? m-ess?

7. Apply phoneme awareness in phonetic cue reading--decoding the first letters of rhyming words.

Example: We use L to write the light saber sound.  Is this like or bike? Light or fightLand or bandLearn or burn?


* Minimal component of a barebones phoneme awareness lesson.