Hurry Home, Henry!
Emergent Literacy Design
Meg Betbeze


Letter recognition is vital to the success of emergent readers.  It is very important for children to learn to recognize letters in print and to associate them with their corresponding sounds.  In this lesson, children will learn to recognize the letter H in print and the phoneme /h/ in  spoken words by listening for the phoneme, repeating it and participating in meaningful hands-on activities to help them recognize the letter H. 

Large H cut out, primary paper, pencil, chalk, chalkboard, Hungry Harry by Joanne Partis, letter cutouts of H, worksheet for each student with words that make /h/ sound.

1. "Words that we say and write are made up of twenty-six different letters.  Each letter makes its own sound.  It is important to learn to recognize each letter and remember the sound it makes. Today we are going to learn about the letter H. I am going to help you remember the sound it makes by teaching you about how your mouth moves when you say the sound."
2.  Remind students of how they can pay attention to the way their mouth is moving when they are speaking.
3. Describe /h/ as the sound you make when you breathe into a cupped hand.  Have the students practice making the /h/ sound into their hands.  "Do you hear /h/ in book or head? bag or hot?" Emphasize /h/ in each word. 
4. "Now let's try a tongue twister.  Listen closely to this sentence, then I want you to repeat it."Hungry Henry hurried home from Harold's on Halloween." (Use chart with sentence for students to see).  I want to hear you say it two more times.  Good! Now, listen as I find the /h/'s in the sentence. I will stretch out the /h/'s that I hear.  H-H-Hungry H-H-Henry h-h-hurried h-h-home from H-H-Harold's on H-H-Halloween. Now you try! Stretch out those /h/'s! Good Job! This time, we are going to break off the /h/ from the rest of the word.  /H/-ungry /H/-enry /h/-urried /h/-ome from /H/-arold's on /H/-alloween."
5.  The letter H spells /h/.  I will then create the letter H on the board as I go through the steps to make an H. The students will then get to practice making the letter Hh on primary paper. "The letter H is used to spell /h/.  Watch me as I write the letter H on the board.  For the uppercase H, go down for a wall, down for a wall, and the cross at the fence.  To make a lowercase h, start at the rooftop,  come down and hump over.  Now everyone practice making upper and lowercase H's on your paper."
6. Read the story Hungry Harry by Joanne Partis.  Distribute letter H's.  "This book is called Hungry Harry.  It is about a frog named H-H-Harry who is really h-h-hungry.  One day he asked his mom what was for dinner and she told him that he was old enough to find his own dinner now.  Let's read the book and see if H-H-Harry find any food.  When I am reading, listen for the words that make the /h/ sound.  When you hear one, raise your letter, wait quietly, and then put it down.  Listen carefully!"
7. Distribute worksheet to students.  The worksheet asks them to place a H and a h next to each picture that make the /h/ sound.  As the students go through the worksheet, they are to say the words softly to see if the word makes the /h/ sound.

Allen, Margaret. Dr Maggie's Phonics Learning Centers.  Creative Teaching Press, Inc.  California:1999.
Bell, Ginnu. Hungry Hungry Harry.
Partis, Joanne. Hungry Harry. Scholastic Inc. New Yorkl:2000.
Murray, Bruce. Mouth Moves and Gestures for Phonemes

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