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Emergent Literacy Lesson

Tiffany Taylor


Rationale: Prealphabetic readers must first be aware of and familiar with phonemes before being expected to beginning using the alphabetic code. This lesson will focus on the consonant sound /m/ in words. The concentration will be phonemic, but the grapheme M will be present to give connection.



  1. Explain to students that writing is a special code, and to read the code you must know what sound each letter represents. Today we are going to work on spotting the sound that the letter M makes.
  2. Ask students: When you eat something really good what do you say? Mmmm. Let’s pretend we are eating something really good and say /mmm/ and rub your tummies.
  3. Let’s try a tongue twister. “My mama makes me milkshakes on Mondays.”  Everybody say it three times together.” Now say it again and stretch out the /m/ at the beginning of the words and rub your tummy every time you hear the /m/ sound. “MMMy mmmama  mmmakes mmme  mmmilkshakes on mmmonday.” Pass out M&M’s and have the kids find the m on the M&M. Then tell them to eat it and make the mmm sound. (If you have a child that can not have chocalate you can use marshmellows and make a "mini marshmellow man"
  4. {Have children take out primary paper and pencil} Draw the three lines on the board like the primary paper. Model writing the upper case letter first then the lower case letter. Say: Start at the sidewalk draw straight up to the roof, then draw back down to the sidewalk at a slant. Next go back up to the roof, then back down to the sidewalk. For the lowercase letter, start at the fence line draw straight down to the sidewalk, and then start going straight back up and curve around the fence line. Next follow the curve straight back to the sidewalk again start going straight back up and curve around to the sidewalk and follow it straight down to the sidewalk. Never pick up your pencil. Have students practice writing UPPER and lowercase M in rows on their primary paper. Observe each student’s writing to make sure they are writing correctly.
  5. Have whole class clap when they hear the /m/ sound. Ask: Do you hear /m/ in man or boy? Mouth or nose? Sam or son? Ram or run? Etc…
  6. Read Mama, Do you love me? And have the kids rub their tummies when they hear the /m/ sound.
  7. Have students write down their favorite food that makes them say mmm. Talk about what the kids write, and see if anybody has a favorite food that has the /m/ in it.
  8. To assess the students understanding I will create a worksheet with objects that begin with /m/ and have them circle the correct pictures. Some examples are listed below:

         map                   monkeys                          mop

                                                map                                                 monkey                                          mop                                                                                                                          


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