My Mom’s Muffins! (Mmm, Mmm Good!)

Muffin Picture
Emergent Literacy Design
Jackie Erd

Phonemic awareness and Letter Recognition are the building blocks to successful reading and writing.  Developing an awareness of phonemes and connecting those phonemes with the written letter symbols will help children become expert readers and writers.  A good place for children to begin is recognizing beginning sounds.  This lesson will work to allow children to identify

/m/ at the beginning of words and recognize the written letter M.

Materials Needed:

Introduce the lesson by explaining to the children that reading and writing letters is like breaking a secret code!  Today we will begin our journey to becoming expert code breakers by finding /m/ at the beginning of words. Do you smell that?!  Muffins!!  Mmmm, they smell wonderful!  What do we say when mom makes muffins? We say /m/! Everybody say it with me, “/m/!”  Did you notice that when we did that our lips came together and we hummed?  Let’s try that again.  This time as you do it, rub your belly along with it to show how yummy in the tummy those muffins are every time you hear and feel that humming sound.

Model for the students examples and non-examples.  I hear the /m/ sound when I say the word mmmop.  I don't hear it when I say cop.  Now you and I practice together. "Lets practice .  Class, do we hear the /m/ sound in map or tap?  (map, very good)  How about sad, do you hear the /m/ sound in the word sad?  (no)  How about mad?"  (Yes, very good!)

Now, I want you to listen to this sentence carefully and every time you hear the /m/ sound I want you to rub your tummy.  "My Mom Makes Mayberry Muffins Most Monday Mornings."  Let’s look at this sentence written on the overhead and say it again.  I will point to each word as we read the sentence. (We will all read the sentence together)  Okay, how many times did we rub our bellies and hear the /m/ sound?

Now that we’ve broken the code lets make some M’s of our own. Take out your paper and pencils.  An M begins by drawing a line from the floor to the ceiling.  Now bring it down to the windowsill and then carefully back up to the ceiling.  Finally, the line goes right back down to the floor.  Let’s practice writing /m/ a few times.

Ok code breakers!  I want you to take out your magnifying glasses now and investigate these words with me.  Each time you hear /m/ at the beginning of these words, hold your Magnifying glass up high in the air.  If you do not, leave it on the table.  I will say the words: moon, hand, might, apple, man, and muscle.

Next, I will read the book If You Give a Moose a Muffin.   I will ask our code breakers to investigate what might happen if you give a moose a muffin by taking a few guesses of what may happen.  I will then ask them to be on the look out for that /m/ sound as we begin the book. 

Then read to the children.  After I have read, I will ask the children what words in the book began with the /m/ sound.  I will write these words down on the overhead.

I will pass out a sheet with pictures. Some of these pictures begin with the /m/ sound.  We will say each picture before the children begin. They will identify the objects that begin with the /m/ sound by drawing magnifying glasses around those pictures. 


Eldredge, Lloyd.  Teaching Decoding in Holisitic Classrooms.  Prentice

Hall (1995) p 50-70

Jones, Joy. (2001)  Munchy munchy macaroni.  Retrieved: March 1, 2004, from:

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