“Choo, Choo!  All Aboard!”
Andrea Williams
Emergent Literacy Lesson Design

Rationale: Before children can learn to read and spell words, they must learn to recognize that letters represent phonemes.  Furthermore, they must recognize that spellings are simply maps of the different phonemes in spoken words.  Before children can relate letters to phonemes, they must recognize phonemes in spoken words.  The consonant digraph, /ch/, appears in many spoken words.  This phoneme is difficult for children to recognize because the /c/ and the /h/ are blended into one phoneme.  This lesson will teach children to recognize /ch/ in spoken words by learning a meaningful representation and symbol.  Children will have practice finding /ch/ in words.  

Materials: primary paper and pencil; chart with "Charlie cheerfully chews his cheesy chips”; flash cards with /ch/ words: chip, teacher, child, couch, cherry; flash cards with non /ch/ words: dog, table, cat, man; “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” by Bill Martin, Jr. and John Archambault; picture page with child, cherry, chair, teacher, cheese, couch, catch, chuckle, church, cheetah

Procedures:

1.Ask students: Have you ever heard a train say ‘choo, choo’?  We are going to learn the /ch/ mouth move today.  Let’s say /ch/ together! [rotate you arms in circular motions like the wheels of a train.] Remember to move your arms like the wheels of our train!  All aboard! Say /ch/.
2.Introduce lesson by saying that writing is a code.  If we can learn what letters stand for, we can break the code.  We will go slowly and figure out what our mouths are doing when we say words.  Today, we are going to learn the mouth move for /ch/.  It might be hard at first, but we will eventually get it.  Say /ch/ several times and focus on what your mouths are doing.
3.Say: Let’s do a tongue twister to practice our /ch/ sound.  “Charlie cheerfully chews his cheesy chips.”  Everyone say it three times.  Now we will say it again, but this time, I want you to stretch out all of the words so we can hear /ch/.  Remember to make your train motions!  Now, I want you to break off the /ch/ when we say the tongue twister: “/ch/arlie /ch/eerfully /ch/ews his /ch/eesy /ch/ips.”  You all did very well!
4.[Have students take out primary paper and pencil.]  We can use the letters c and h to spell /ch/.  I am going to write the letters first, and then we will do it together.  [Model how to write c and h.]  To make our little c, start a little below the fence, come up and touch the fence, swing around to the sidewalk by making a half circle, and come up a little above the sidewalk.  To make little h, start at the sky, come all the way down to the sidewalk, comeback to the fence, and make a hump to the sidewalk.  Let’s do it together.  Now, I am going to walk around and help anyone who needs it.  Then everyone who makes his or her c and h will get a smiley face.  
5.Call on students to answer and explain their answer: (Model how to tell if /ch/ is in a word by directing students to pay attention to what their mouths are doing as they say each word.)  Do you hear /ch/ in chuckle or laugh?  Chip or coke?  Chair or table?  Cherry or lime?  Chime or ring?  [Pass out a picture of a train to each student.]  Let’s see if you can hear /ch/ in some words.  Show me your trains if you can.  “Charlie cheerfully chews his cheesy chips.”  
6.Now read “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” and discuss the story.  Say: After I read it through the first time, we will read it again and hold up our train pictures when we hear words with /ch/.  I’m going to list all of the words on the board after we read it a second time.  That way, we’ll be able to see our little c and our little h beside each other.  
7.Say: “Now I am going to give you flashcards with some /ch/ words and some non /ch/ words on them.  (chick or pick, teach or tell, ect.)  You are going to figure out which ones are the /ch/ flashcards and which ones are the non /ch/ flashcards.  Remember that little c and little h have to be right next to each other in the word to make the /ch/ sound.  If you need help, I will be walking around the room to help those of you who need it.
8.For Assessment, I will distribute a picture page to each student.  I will help the students name each picture.  Then, I will ask each student to circle the pictures whose names have /ch/.  

Reference:

1. www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/chall/herringel.html.  Michelle Herring;  "Ch Ch Ch Ch Ch...Here Comes the Train"

2. Eldredge, J. Lloyd; Teach Decoding: Why and How, second edition; Upper Saddle River, NJ; Pearson Education, Inc.; 2005, 1995; 60-82

3.Archambault, John and Bill Martin Jr.  (2000)  Lois Ehlert (Illustrator)  Chicka Chicka Boom Boom.  New York: Alladdin.

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