Billy's Blue Ball

                                                                                    Julie Miller
Emergent Literacy Design

Rationale:  To learn to read and spell words, children need to understand that letters stand for phonemes.  Phonemes are the small mouth moves of speech that construct our spoken words.  Before they can learn the correspondences of phonemes and spoken words, they must be able to recognize the individual phonemes.  In this lesson, we will be working with /b/ and the b-b-b-b sound it makes.  The student will be able to recognize /b/ and learn a meaningful representation.

Materials: Primary paper and pencil for each child; chart with ãBilly bounced his bright blue ball down Broad Streetä; sheet with pictures of /b/ sounds for each child; white board and marker for the teacher only, Bud the Sub by Sheila Cushman


1. Reading and writing is a unique adventure that we get to take.  The tricky part is that in order to start on those adventures we have to uncover the secret code- learning what the letters stand for and the way our mouth moves as we say those letters and words.  Today, we are going to learn how to recognize and the letter /b/.  The letter /b/ hides in a lot of words and we are going to learn how to find him!

2. Ask students: Have you ever heard a drum being played? Thatâs the sound we are looking for- bum-bum-b-b-b. If you stretch out the word, you can really hear the drum.  Iâll try the word ball, b-b-b-b-a-t. B-b-b-bat. See how you hear the sound of a drum at the beginning of the word bat?  When you say the drumming sound, your lips come together and you release air in a tiny burst that creates the /b/ sound. Letâs put our hand in front of our lips and feel the burst of air as we say the drumming sound.  Do you feel the air when you say /b/?

3. Letâs try our tongue twister (on chart). ãBilly bounced his bright blue ball down Broad Street.ä  Now, letâs try it together.  Good! This time, letâs stretch out the /b/ at the beginning of the word.  Listen for the drum sound. Bbbilly bbbounced his bbbright bbblue bbball down Bbbroad Street.  That was great! This time, letâs see if we can break off the /b/ at the beginning of each word.  /B/ illy /b/ ounced his /b/ right /b/ lue /b/ all down /B/ road Street. Very good! You can really hear the drum sound when you break of the /b/.

4. Have the students take out their primary paper and pencil.  We can use the letter b to spell the drumming sound /b/.  Start at the roof, go down to the sidewalk and bounce up and around. Very good! Letâs see everyoneâs b.  Now, that you have made the first one, I want you too keep going and make a whole row of bâs on the top line of your paper. You have just written the drum sound!  Now when you go on a reading adventure and see the letter /b/, you will know that it says the drumming sound.

5. Pass of the chart to the students with the different pictures of the sound /b/.  Now, that we have learned how to write and recognize /b/, I want everyone to circle the pictures where you hear the drum sound.  If you donât think it has the /b/ sound, donât circle it.  For instance, do you hear /b/ in basket or racket? If you say basket, then circle the picture of the basket.

6. Ask the children to respond.  Now that you have done the sheet, letâs try and hear the drum sound in these words.  Do you hear /b/ in bat or cat?  blue or glue? boy or girl? bird or fish?

7. Have the children write down one or two words that have the /b/ sound on their primary paper.  When they are finished, have each child (one at a time) share one or two of their words as I put them on the white board so that everyone can see.  Go over each word and have the students stretch it out to hear to /b/ sound.

8. Assessment- Have each child create their own tongue twister using the /b/ sound on their primary paper. Ask each student to share their twister and enunciate the /b/ sound. Have each child come up and recite thier tongue twister.

References-  Bliss Ramseyâs emergent literacy site ãThe Beautiful Bouncing Ballä;  23, Feb. 2003

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