Beginning Reading
Ashley Thompson


Rationale: To learn to read, children must learn the letter combinations (digraph) that stand for specific mouth moves. Children must learn that when certain letters are together they make a certain mouth move. This lesson will help children recognize the phoneme /ch/ in both written and spoken language. They will learn to spell and read words with the /ch/ sound through letterbox lessons and by reading a new book.

Materials: Poster with "The chimp chewed cheep cherries while sitting in the chair" written on it, Elkonin letterbox set for each child, letters a, b, c, c, e, e, h, i, k, l, m, n, p, s, t, u, w, large laminated Elkonin letterbox for teacher, assessment sheet with letterboxes {#1-3, #2-3, #3-3, #4-4, #5-4, primary paper and pencil, 3 copies of A Peach for Chad.

Procedures: 1. I would introduce the lesson by explaining that sometimes when two letters are put together they make a special sound. " Today boys and girls we are going to talk about the way out mouth moves when we put C and H together. Then say /ch/. Can everyone watch as I review how to print C and H on the board" (talk through it). "Can everyone make that sound with me? /ch/ Very good! I would like everyone to watch the way my mouth moves as I read the word chip. First let's look at the vowel /i/. Then we will add  /ch/ to /i/ to get /chi/. Finally we will add the /p/ to /chi/ and get /chip/. I know that everyone will now be able to pick out /ch/ in other words. Let's try some."

2. Ask students: "Do you hear the /ch/ in sat or chop? In chimp or meat? In not or chap?"

3. "Now let's practice with our silly sentence. Everyone follow along with the poster as I say our sentence. The chimp chewed cheep cherries while sitting in the chair. Now let's say the sentence three times together as a group. Who can tell me what words in our silly sentence have the /ch/ in them? That's right- chimp, chewed, cherries, and chair.ä

4. Demonstrate with large letterbox how to spell words. "We are going to now use our letterboxes to practice spelling some words with the /ch/ sound. Does everyone remember how to use the letterboxes? Each box stands for one sound. I am going to spell the word champ. I hear the /ch/. Remember that the C and H make one sound so we are going to put them in the first box together. /ch/ /a/ I also hear the /a/ which is represented by the letter A. So I am going to put an A in the second box. Letâs sound out what we have so far, /ch/ /a/ /m/. That sound /m/ is represented by an M. So I will put an M in the 3rd letterbox. The last sound that you hear is /p/ which is represented by a P. The P goes in the last letterbox.  Now I would like you to spell some words using the /ch/ sound.

5. Pass out letterboxes making sure that each student has one. Then pass out envelopes with the letters in them. "Make sure all of your letters are lowercase. Okay, boys and girls, to begin I would like you to make sure that you have 3 letterboxes on your desk because that is how many sounds our first word has. I would like for you to spell the word chip. You chin is located under your mouth. I will walk around and check everyone's before we go over the answer. Who would now like to tell me how they spelled "chip"? Wonderful." Continue the lesson with the following words (3-chew, inch, beach, much, check, chest, cheep 4-lunch) Tell the students how many boxes they need for each word they are supposed to spell.

6."I would like three students to come with me to read. The rest of you get out your primary paper and copy down our silly sentence. Read A Peach for Chad with the three students letting them each read a page. Boys and girls, we are going to read a book a chimp that likes to play with his food. Letâs read it to find out if he gets in trouble or not."

7. Continue reading A Peach for Chad with each group.

8. For assessment I will give each child a worksheet that has letterboxes already on it. I will call out 5 words and they will need to spell the words in the boxes provided. "Boys and girls, I now want you to clear everything out of your desk except the worksheet I have just given you. I am going to call out 5 words and as I do that you are going to spell each word. Remember that you should have only one box per sound. [#1-3 boxes, #2-3, #3-3, #4-4, #5-4] 1. peach 2. much 3. chip 4. chest 5.chant

Eldredge, J. Lloyd (1995). Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms. New Jersey. Prentice Hall, Inc. p. 190.

Murray, B.A. & Lesniak, T. (1999). The Letterbox Lesson: A Hands-on Approach for Teaching Decoding. The Reading Teacher. p. 644-650

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