Emergent Literacy Design: Evil Eagles

Maria Chambers

flying eagle


This lesson will help students to learn about the long /E/ sound.  It is important for children to recognize phonemes in spoken word contexts.  They will learn to recognize the long /E/ sound by learning a meaningful representation and letter symbol and they will practice finding the long /E/ in words. 

            Materials: Primary paper, pencils, crayons, and blank paper, What Will the Seal Eat- Authors- Sheila Cushman, and Rona Kornblum, Publisher- Educational Insights, and chart paper with Evil Ethan Eats with Eagles written on it, and picture page.

            1.  Introduce the lesson by explaining that we are going to learn about how the letter E makes the long /E/ sound.  Explain that the letter E makes the long /E/ sound in many words.  Today we will find words with the long /E/ in them.

2.      Ask students: What noise does a creaky floor make?  It makes the long /E/ sound.  Let’s pretend to walk on our creaky floor while making the /E/ sound.  Every time you hear the /E/ sound I want you to walk on your creaky floor while making the /E/ sound.

3.      Now we are going to try a tongue twister (on chart). Evil Ethan Eats with Eagles. Now say the tongue twister out loud a few times.  This time stretch out the E in Eeeevil Eeeethan Eeeaaats with Eeeagles.  While saying the tongue twister pretend to walk on the creaky floor.  Does everyone hear the /E/ sound in most of the words in the tongue twister?

4.      Students will need primary writing paper and pencils.  We are going to practice writing our E sound on paper.  Demonstrate how to write the letter E by making the long /E/ sound first.  Show the students how to write an E.  Provide descriptions as you form the E that will help them remember the /E/ sound.  Have the student practice writing the E ten times.

5.      Call on students to answer and tell how they knew:  Do you hear the /E/ sound in Feet or pet? Reach or bed?  Meek or shed?  Cheat or wait?  Now we will play a Vowel Sounds Game.  Sing rhythm of Skip to my Lou my darling.

Who has a word that has an E?

Has, has, has, an E?

Who has a word that has an E?

Skip to my Lou my darling?

Eager is a word that has an E.

Has, has, has an E.

Eager is a word that has an E.

Skip to my Lou my darling!

Students will come up with their own words that make the /E/ sound.  Then the teacher will use their words in the song. 

6.      Read What Will the Seal Eat?  and talk about the story.  Reread the book again and have student raise their hand when they hear the /E/ sound in words.  Then have them draw a seal and use the words that make the long /E/ sound to make up a song inside their drawings.  They will use blank paper and crayons.  I will hang their work in the hall when they are finished.

7.      Assessment: Each student will get a copy of a picture page where they will circle the pictures that have the long /E/ sound in them.  On the picture page, put the pictures of these items on the page: eagle, seed, treat, seal, meal, and leaf.  Put in some pictures of words that don’t make the /E/ sound. 


Internet Site: Crosby, Elizabeth, Eager E, www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/insp/crosbyel.html

Book:  Eldredge, J. Lloyd, Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms, Englewood Cliffs, Prentice-Hall, 1995, p.59.

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