“Open that door! Eeehh…..”

Emergent Literacy Design
Emily Cate Stewart

Children can become fluent readers once they understand that letters  represent phonemes.  A phoneme is a vocal gesture that can be heard. Phonemes are defined as the vocal gestures that the child hears.  Next it is important for the student to realize that the spelling of the word is determined by the order in which the phoneme appears in the word.  When children begin to become aware of phonemes, reading begins to occur with more and more success. The following lesson is designed to help children grasp the sound of the short /e/ sound in words, we will use a motion and picture to identify the phoneme.

  One Picture of a door opening for every child
  One sheet of primary paper for each child.
  A copy of Red Gets Fed.      
  A crayon or pencil for each child.
  Worksheet with the following pictures on it for each child: egg, set, tap, sell, rest, bet, pan, cash, and band

1.Begin lesson by talking about how each letter has a certain mouth move. Introduce the mouth move for /e/, sometimes it may be hard to remember that e makes the /e/ sound but if we learn a motion to go with it it helps us remember /e/.

2.Introduce the lesson by; Have you ever heard a squeaky door?  Then I will ask them what the door normally sounds like?  I guess that they will say responses like /ee/ or /e/or “squeak”? I will then point out the sound/e/ and let them know that is the sound that we will be working with.  I will give them the movement and the sound /e/ and then let them do it with me a couple of times while showing them the letter correspondence that goes along with the sound.  I will then give each child the sheet of paper with the opening door picture on it.

3.I will go on with the lesson and let the students know that/e/ is a very common sound we hear and sound we speak. I will give the students some words off of the top of my head with /e/ in them and then in return, I will ask them, Can you tell me any words where you hear /e/?I will let the students give me some responses and then supply them with some if they are not coming up with any.  After that, I will tell them I am going to read them something and I will have them hold up their picture whenever they hear the creaky door /e/ sound. Example: “Miss Apple had fun at the pet shop. Although there were no nice rabbits, the clerk was very helpful”  

4.Next we’ll have a picture tongue twister. “Every egg at Eddie’s farm hatched earlier than expected.” Then we will all say the tongue twister together putting our hands up then down on words that begin with creaky door /e/.  We will then say the tongue twister dragging out each /e/.

5.I’ll tell the student’s, Since we’ve learned the letter e makes the /e/ sound how about we practice writing it so that we have no trouble recognizing it in print.  I will model how the students should write their e. I will say, start with your pencil in the center and go down to the sidewalk up toward the fence, touch the fence then loop around to touch your line. I will model this several times and then I will have the student’s practice this writing it ten times each. I will walk around and monitor them finishing their e’s.

6.I will read the book Red Gets Fed.  I will tell the children to listen carefully: Every time that I read a word with creaky door/e/. I want them to hold up the door picture and put it down.

7.    To assess the student’s I will give them a sheet of paper were the bottom half is blank so that they can draw something that they can think of with the creaky door /e/ sound. On the top half of the worksheet I will have two pictures per question where the children can circle the picture that has the creaky door /e/ sound.  
 -   “Cry Baby.” Emergent Literacy Design: Cendy Burbic. Summer 2004. l

  -   “Eeehh What was That?” Emergent Literacy Design: Sarah Asbury. Fall 2003.                                   

  -    Eldredge, J. Lloyd (1995). “Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.”  New Jersey: Merrill, 1995, pp 50-70.

  -    Red Gets Fed. Carson, CA: Educational Insights, 1990.