Icky Sticky /i/

By: Katie Kilgore

Beginning Reading Lesson Plan


Rational:  This lesson will teach students about the correspondent i=/i/.  Students need to become aware of the phoneme of each grapheme.  When students learn more about the letter-sound correspondences, they improve in their reading.  Presenting students with a visual (fingers with icky goo) and a gesture (moving your fingers to get the icky goo off) with the correspondent will help students recognize /i/ in oral language.  A tongue twister, letterbox lesson, and a short /i/ book will also help students recognize /i/ in oral language. 



Graphic image of icky sticky fingers

Primary paper and pencil

Elkonin boxes (for modeling and individual student use)

Letter Tiles for students and teacher- i, s, r, c, h, b, g, l, d, k, n, a, p, e, t

Spelling words on a chart to read: is, rich, big, lid, brick, slid, nap, bet

Letter /i/ assessment worksheet

Tongue Twister Poster – It was icky in the igloo

Tin Man Fix It Book- (Educational Insights- 1990)



  1. Say: Today we are going to be learning about the short vowel sound i=/i/.  Show the students a picture of the icky sticky fingers. Say: When I say /i/ I think of icky sticky goo on my fingers.  Doesn’t it make you want to say /i/ (shake your hands/fingers while you say /i/). That is what sound the short i makes. So when we see or hear the short i, think about the icky sticky fingers and shake the ick off.   Now you try it. Say iiiicky stiiicky and get the ick of off your fingers. “Icky sticky (with hand gesture)”


  1. 2.  Say: Now we are going to read a tongue twister that has i=/i/.  I will read it first, “It was icky in the igloo.”  Now you read it, “It was icky in the igloo.”   Now let’s read it by stretching out the /i/, “iiiit was iiiiicky iiiin the iiiigloo.”


  1. Say: When I say /i/ my mouth is open and my tongue is slightly lowered. Now you say /i/ and see if your mouth makes the same movement.  Now I want you to listen for /i/ in the words I call out.  If you here /i/ shake the ick off of your fingers. Is it in sit, bed, kid, car, and kiss?


  1. Say: Now I will use the elkonin boxes and letters to demonstrate how to spell a word.  Say: now we are going to complete a letterbox lesson and spell some words that have the /i/ sound and previous short vowels that we have worked on.  Each box represents a different vocal gesture. 

I am going to spell the word Rick.  /i/-/i/, I know the /i/ sound is in there. Stretch out the word by saying RR--ii--ck. I will need three boxes because my word makes three vocal gestures, /r/ /i/ /ck/--- R-I-CK.


  1. Say: Now I want you to try some words.  The students will use their letters and Elkonin boxes to spell some words with the short i sound.  I will assist the students. 

Say: You are going to start with two boxes.  Spell is. He is going to the game.  (Walk around and check students spellings.  If they get it wrong say what they spelt and ask them to spell the word again.) 

Say: Now use three boxes.  Spell rich.  I love rich chocolate. (Check students).

Say: Now spell big.  That is a big dog (Check students).

Say: Now spell nap.  I took a nap when I was tired. (check students.)

Say: Now spell lid.  I got the lid off the coke (Check students). 

Say: Now spell bet.  I bet I did well on the test. (check students)

Say: Now we are going to use four boxes. (Check students).

Say: Spell brick.  I live in a brick house. (Check students)

Say: Spell  slid.  He slid across the grass. (Check students).


  1. Say: Now I am going to have you read the words we spelled.  I will demonstrate how to do this.  I will read Chick.  I see the short I that makes the /i/ sound. I will use cover-ups to make the vocal gestures for everything before the vowel.  Then I will add the vowel and what follows.  “/ch/-/i/-/ck/, chick.(Make Body Chunk First).  Now you try read the following words ( Point to each word on the poster – is, rich, big, lid, brick, slid.)



  1. Say: Now we are going to read a book called Tin Man Fix-it.  Mr. Tin Man is falling apart.  Tim tries to save Tin Man.  Do you think Tim is able to save Tin man, or does Tin Man fall apart?  We will have to read to find out! (Have students read the book with a partner and crosscheck. Then we will read the book as a class and discuss it).


  1. Say: Now we are going to do our message of the day.  Write on your primary paper, “My favorite candy is” and complete the sentence. 


  1. Say: Great job!   Now, I want to see how well you can solve words with a missing vowel      sound.  Look at each picture on this worksheet. Say what the picture is, then write in how to spell the word with the missing vowel correspondent.  (Collect the worksheets to assess the students).  Also, have individuals come read the letterbox words while the class in working on the worksheet as an individual assessment. (assessment)




Alexander, Shannon. “Icky Sticky Goo.”  http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/navig/alexanderbr.html


Assessment Worksheet.  Funfonix.  http://www.funfonix.com/worksheets/book1_page16.php. 


Return to Doorways index