The Pink Puffing Train

Emergent Literacy

Jennifer Pride


Rationale The association between letters and phonemes is important for children to make as they begin to learn to read. This lesson is designed to help children associate the phoneme /p/ with the grapheme P.  Students will begin to make to correlations between the two by developing phoneme awareness by practicing finding /p/ in words, and applying phoneme awareness with /f/ in phonetic cue reading.



Tongue Tickler (Penny had a pretty pink puffing train) on chart or Screen (projector, document camera)

Flash Cards with:  pound, round, pan, dan, pet, wet, splash, dash, speak, weak

Picture with P and p and puffing train

Primary paper (URL below) (enough for each student)

Pencils (enough for each students)

Drawing paper (enough for each student)

Book, Hop on Pop


Assessment Worksheets with pictures on it (URL below) (enough for each student)



1. Say:  Sometimes it is hard to learn what sound to say when we see a letter.  It helps to know how the mouth moves when we spot a letter.  Today we are going to work on /p/.  When we see p we are going to think of a train puffing smoke.  When we say /p/ we are going to think of that puffing sound.  We're going to practice writing the letter p and practice finding the letter/sound in different words.  Let's get started learning this wonderful letter.


2. We're going to practice /p/ by pretending we are a train that is puffing smoke.  Let's put our hands above our heads and pop them open as we puff.  What do you realize about your mouth when we puff?  To make /p/ our lips first come together and then open to let a puff of air out.


3. Let's see if the puffing /p/ is in stamp.  I'll know if it's there if my lips come together and then I let a puff of air out. S-tampppp- - slower- - S-s-t-t-t-a-a-a-m-m-m-p-p-p.  That was /p/ at the end my lips came together and let a puff out!  We do say /p/ in stamp.


4. Let's try a tongue tickler (on chart or screen):  "Penny had a pretty pink puffing train."  

a. This alliterative tongue tickler will be used to place emphasis on the /p/. Students will stretch the phoneme every time they hear it.

b. Everyone say it three times together. 

c. This time we are going to break the /p/ off the word:  "(P) enny had a (p) retty   (p) ink (p) uffing train."

5. (Have students take out primary paper and pencil) we use the letter p, P to spell /p/.  To make a lowercase p we are going to start at the fence, go straight down into the ditch, come up and pit his chin on the sidewalk.  We can think about the letter p and how it looks by thinking the long part is when our lips are pressed together and the round part is us letting our puff of air out! I am going to look at everyone's p.  After I put a stamp on it, I was to see nine more puffing p's!


6. Let's do some practice with /p/.  (Call on students) Do you hear /p/ in mop or broom?  In pan or skillet?  In chips or crackers?  What am I saying:  stam-p? stri-pe? mo-p?  What am I saying:  sp-lash?  p-rint?  p-ig?


7. Introduce Hop on Pop by Dr. Seuss.  Let's look at this fun book.  This book has a pup and a cup.  Can you guess what the pup is doing with a cup?  We're going to look at the ps and /p/ on pages 3-5 as well as throughout the book.  We are going to listen for our puffing /p/!  After, we are going to come up with other silly things that a pup and a cup can do or students can use other /p/ words.  They will then draw a picture to represent this as well as write what it is using inventive spelling.


8. Phonemic Cue Reading:  Model:  Show POUND and decided if /p/ is in pound or round.  We know that when we see P we make a puffing sound and let out some air. So, when I read p-ound I left my puff of air out like that train, so /p/ is in pound.  Is it in pan or skillet? Is it in dog or pet? Is it in splash or dash?  Is it in speak or weak?

a. pan

b. pet

c. splash

d. speak


9. For Assessment, students will be given a sheet with pictures on it.  Students will draw a line from the pigs to the other pictures that start with /p/.  Students can then color the pictures that start with /p/.




Freeman, Katie.  "Piggy's Love P-P-Popcorn and P-P-Pancakes


Penny, Jessica. "Put, Put, Put Goes the Go cart."


Assessment worksheet:

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