P is for Pumpkin

Cierra Haslam

Emergent Literacy


Rationale: Children need alphabetic insight about letters and phonemes to help them with reading skills.   Before children can understand that letters and phonemes match, they have to be able to hear phonemes in spoken words. This lesson will help children hear that p says /p/.  They will learn to hear /p/ in spoken words.

Materials: Primary paper, pencils, chart with Put the pretty pumpkin onto the perfect platform, cards with pictures on them (see = #6), classroom board for example in #3, pictures of a pirate, a pumpkin, a boat, a clown, and a princess.   

Procedures: 1. Introduce the lesson with an explanation of alphabetic code and phonemes. Explain that "today we will be learning about p and the sound it makes, /p/."  Tell the students, "/p/ sounds kind of like popcorn when it is popping in the microwave. Let's see if you can make the /p/ sound like popping popcorn."  Have the students pop up out of their seats when they say or hear /p/.

2.   Next, say the tongue twister that has p's in it from the chart.  Have the students pop up like popcorn when they hear the /p/ sound.  Put the pretty pumpkin onto the perfect platform.  Have the students repeat it after you.  Then say it one more time. Next, say it again and stretch out the /p/ in each word. Model to the students and then have them do it themselves. Then have the students do it alone.

3.   Explain to the students that now that they know what p sounds like they are going to learn what it looks like and how to write it. Pass out primary paper and model on the board how to write a p.  Be sure to draw lines on the board like primary paper and walk them through the process. Have the students try it while still explaining.  Have them write multiple upper and lowercase p's on their papers.

4.   Tell the students, "Now I'm going to say a list of words and I want you to pop up like popcorn when you hear /p/."  Say, princess, pineapple, motorcycle, popcorn, bird, pie, captain, pumpkin, pig, and owl.  "Drag out the /p/ sound in the p words.

5.   Show the students pictures of a pirate, a pumpkin, a boat, a clown, and a princess.  Have them pop up like popcorn when they see a picture with the sound /p/ in it.

6.   For an assessment, pass out cards with two pictures each on them, one with a /p/ sound and one without.  Have each student circle which picture represents /p/.



Murray, Bruce. "Example of Emergent Literacy Design: Sound the Foghorn".  

Harris, Katherine. "Penelope, The Precious Pig".  http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/voyages/harrisel.html

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