Emergent Literacy- Red Racer

Katie Anderson


Children who learn to read and spell words need to understand that letters stand for a phoneme and map out a spelling of a spoken word.  Consonants are the easiest part of a word for a child to hear.  In this lesson, children will be able to identify /r/ in spoken words by learning a meaningful representation, a letter symbol, and practice recognizing words that begin with and contain /r/.



  Primary Paper


   Letter manipulative (letters on paper squares or store bought to represent each letter of

  the alphaet)

   Red Racer by: Audrey Wood

   Chart Paper with the phrase “Ryan bought a really raggedy rubber rug.”

  (or any tongue twister with the letter /r/)

    Pictures of different objects that start with /r/ (such as rock, rug, rabbit, rooster,      raindrops, etc.)

   Pictures of things that don’t have the /r/ (such as sock, leg, ball, cloud, etc.)



 1.) Introduce the lesson by helping students say the letter “r” by learning the proper mouth move.  “Today we are going to be making the sound a race car makes. (Everyone will make the /r/ sound like a race car) We are going to try and spot words that we say each day that has that sound in it.”


 2.) “Can anyone tell me what their lips are doing when we roar like a race car? If no one gets it say “Well, let’s see when I say /r/ my lips are puckering. So are my lips closed or are my lips open?  Good! They are open! Now, let’s practice saying red racer. Let me hear you using /r/.


 3.) Let’s try a tongue twister (on chart paper).  “Ryan bought a really raggedy rubber rug”.  Now everyone say it.  This time lets stretch out our mouth moves when we say /r/. “RRRyan  bought a RRReally RRRaggedy  RRRubber RRRug.” That sounds wonderful!


4.) Now let’s do some practice when I hold up a picture you tell me what it is and lets see if we hear /r/. Hold up pictures of /r/ things and non /r/ things.  Great! I am so proud of y’all!


5.) Now let’s see if you can spot the words that have /r/.  Do you hear /r/ in go or rest?  Do you hear /r/ in ragged or beam?  Do you hear /r/ in say or robber?  Do you hear /r/ in right or blue?  Call on students to answer. 


6.)  (Have students take out primary paper and pencil.) We can also use “r” when we spell /r/.  We are going to write the letter “r”.  First, I want you to just watch me.  For a capital “R”, you form a capital P and draw a diagonal line out of it.  For a lowercase “r”, you draw a straight line down like a stick and then draw an upside-down “u”, almost at the top of the stick.  Now you have your “r”!


7.) Read “Red Racer” by Audrey Wood. We will then talk about the book and recall some of the /r/ sounds we heard in the book.


 8.) For assessment, the students will tell me some words that I will write on chart paper that begin with the letter r.  If they are able to do this, they know what /r/ sounds like in spoken words.




Kelley Styles. La La La. http://www.auburn.edu/~murraba/chall/stylesel.html

Wood, Audrey.  Red Racer.  Simon & Schuster.  1996.


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