Emergent Literacy
Ning!Nang! Nong!
Learning the Letter “N”
Designed by:  Roslyn Hester

Rationale
The first step in learning how to read is letter recognition.  According to Adams, letter recognition has been proven to be one of the best predictors of a student’s success in reading.  This lesson is designed to introduce students to the letter N.  After completing this lesson, students will be able to recognize the letter N by sight, hear and say the phoneme /n/, and write the letter N.  It is vital that students learn to recognize letters and their corresponding phonemes in order to break the Alphabetic Code.

Materials
Chalkboard, chalk, poster with tongue twister on it, tape to hang poster, class set of “N” worksheet and “Can you hear the /n/ sound?” worksheet, copy of the poem “On the Ning Nang Nong” by Spike Milligan, and Class set of pencils.

Procedures
1. Begin the lesson by reviewing letters A-M.  As a class, state each letter and its corresponding phoneme until you get to the letter N.
2. After completing the review, introduce the letter N by writing it (capital and lower case) on the chalkboard.
3. As a class, practice making the /n/ sound.  THIS IS THE LETTER N.  N SAYS /n/.  CAN YOU SAY /n/?  TURN TO YOUR NEIGHBOR AND SAY /n/.  HOW IS HE/SHE HOLDING THEIR MOUTH?  GREAT JOB!  Draw a small chart on the board.  Make two columns and label them “BEFORE” and “AFTER.”  Have students brainstorm some words with the /n/ sound.  CAN ANYONE TELL ME A WORD THAT BEGINS WITH THE /n/ SOUND?  WHAT ABOUT A WORD THAT ENDS WITH THE /n/ SOUND?  RAISE YOUR HAND IF YOUR NAME HAS THE /n/ SOUND IN IT.
4. Read the poem “On the Ning Nang Nong” by Spike Milligan.
5. After reading the poem, pass out the “N” worksheet, which models how the letter N should look.  Before students begin, demonstrate how to write the letter N on the chalkboard.  TO WRITE THE CAPITAL LETTER N, YOU MUST START AT THE FLOOR AND DRAW A STRAIGHT LINE TO THE CEILING.  NEXT, DRAW A LINE FROM THE CEILING, DOWN THE STAIRS AND TO THE FLOOR.  MAKE SURE THAT THIS LINE IS A SLANTED LINE.  DRAW A LINE FROM THE FLOOR BACK TO THE CEILING AND YOU HAVE THE CAPITAL LETTER N.  TO WRITE A LOWER CASE N, DRAW A STRAIGHT LINE FROM THE FLOOR TO THE SOFA.  THEN JUMP OFF THE SOFA AND BACK TO THE FLOOR.  IT’S ALMOST LIKE WRITING A LOWER CASE M, BUT YOU ONLY HAVE TO JUMP OFF THE SOFA ONCE.  Let students complete their “N” worksheet.
6.Activity:  Read the tongue twister aloud to the students.  NANCY HAS NINE NICKELS IN HER NOSE.  CAN YOU REPEAT THAT AFTER ME?  DO YOU HEAR THE /n/ IN NANCY? HAS? NINE? NICKELS? IN? HER? NOSE?  Next, hang the poster with the tongue twister on the board.  Have students volunteer to come and circle the letter N in each word.
7.Assessment:  Turn the tongue twister poster face down.  Pass out the “Can you hear the /n/ sound?” worksheet.  Read the directions aloud to the students.  Give students a few minutes to complete it.
8. Have students to exchange papers with their neighbor.  Go over the correct answers with the class.  We you are finished collect these worksheets.
9.Final Review: Have students to brainstorm new words that have the letter N in them.  Write them on the board in the “AFTER” column.  AFTER LEARNING AND REVIEWING THE LETTER N AND ITS SOUND /n/, LOOK HOW MANY NEW WORDS WE HAVE.  EXCELLENT WORK!
10.Activity:  Let students color their “N” worksheet.
 
 

References
• http://www.abcteach.com/ABC/animals/letn.htm
• http://www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/breakthroughs/mcinnishel.html
• Adams, Marie (1990) Beginning to Read:  Thinking and Learning about Print A Summary.  Center for the Study of
        Reading the Reading Research and Education Center; University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. 12.
 

Poem

On the Ning Nang Nong
By Spike Milligan

On the Ning Nang Nong
Where the Cows go Bong!
And the Monkeys all say Boo!
There’s a Nong Nang Ning
Where the trees go Ping!
And the tea pots Jibber Jabber Joo.
On the Nong Ning Nang
All the Mice go Clang!
And you just can’t catch ‘em when they do!
So it’s Ning Nang Nong!
Cows go Bong!
Nong Nang Ning!
Trees go Ping!
Nong Ning Nang!
The mice go clang!
What a noisy place to belong,
Is the Ning Nang Ning Nang Nong!

*  This poem can also be used to teach the letter “Gg.”

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