Get your Mouth Examined

Emergent Literacy

Catherine Church

Rationale: Help children learn how to recognize the different phonemes in spoken and written language. This lesson will help children identify short vowels in words. This lesson will help children identify /o/ (short o). They will learn to recognize /o/ in spoken words by learning a meaningful representation of the sound and the letter symbol, and then practice finding /o/ in words.

Materials: Primary paper and pencil; Large cards with the words form the tongue twister written on them; drawing paper and crayons; Doc in the Fog (Educational Insights); picture page with log, top, box, mop, dot, pot, dog, rock, and  fox.

Procedures: 1. Introduce the lesson by spoken and written language and how they go together. Then introduce the sound /o/ and the letter o.

2. Ask students: Have you ever been to the doctor and had them stick something on your tongue and make you say /o/? That's the mouth move we're looking for in words. Let's pretend to that we are getting our mouth examined, so lets say /o/ together. [Pretend to hold something on your tongue.] Let’s get our mouths examined so let’s say /o/.

3. Let's try a tongue twister [on board]. "Oliver had an operation in October and Oscar gave him an octopus." Everybody say it three times together. Now say it one more time, and this time, stretch the /o/ at the beginning of the words that have the sound /o/ in them. "Ooooliver had an oooperation in Oooctober and Oooscar gave him an oooctopus." Now we will try it again separating the sound from the word: "/o/ liver had an /o/ peration in /o/ tober and /o/ scar gave him an /o/ ctopus.

 4. [Have students take out primary paper and a pencil]. We can use letter o to spell /o/. Let's write it. Start at the fence. Draw a “c” and then close it up. I want to see everybody's o. After I put a sticker on it, I want you to make five more just like it. When you see letter o all by itself in a word, that's the signal to say /o/.

5. Let me show you how to find /o/ in the word stomp.  I'm going to stretch stomp out in super slow motion and listen for the mouth examination.  St-st-st-o-m-p.  St-st-st-o-o-o... There it is!  I do hear the mouth examination /o/ in stomp.

6. Call on students to answer and tell how they knew: Do you hear /0/ in stop or go? clear or foggy? odd or even? lead or follow? [hold up cards] Say: Let's see if you can spot the mouth move /o/ in some words. Get your mouth examined if you hear /o/. Oliver, had, an, operation, in, October, and, Oscar, gave, him, an, octopus.

7. Say: "Doc in the Fog.”  Doc is a wizard.  He is having fun turning objects into different things.  Something goes wrong though, what do you think happened?"  Read Doc in the Fog and talk about the story. Read it again, and have students raise their hands when they hear words with /o/. List the words on the board. Then have each student draw one of the objects the wizard changed in the story and have them write something about the object they drew. Display their work around the room somewhere.

8. For assessment, distribute the picture page and help students name each picture. Ask each student to circle the pictures whose names have /o/.

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

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