Icky Sticky Hands!


Beginning Readers

Caitlin Clabby

In order for beginning readers to become successful in reading and writing, they must first understand and recognize that each letter in the alphabet represents a different sound. By learning about phonemes and letter correspondences, beginning readers can become fluent readers.  Short vowels are often difficult for students to identify and therefore, this lesson will teach students to recognize, spell, and to read words that contain the i=/i/ correspondence.  Students will learn this correspondence through meaningful representation, as well as through practice with both spoken and written words containing the i=/i/ correspondence.

Chart with Tongue Twister, "Izzy the iguana is inside the Indians igloo."
Primary Paper and pencils
Elkonin Boxes for each student (up to 5 boxes)
Plastic letters for each student (i, t, p, w, n, f, b, g, a, l, b, e, d, s, c, h, r, n, k)
Oversized Letterbox and letters for modeling
Picture of `Icky Sticky' (girl with glue on her hands) (http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/phonpics.html)
Book, Tin Man Fix-it (Educational Insights) enough copies that students can partner read
Pseudoword Test (gib, sif, rin, hin, wid)

1.) Begin the lesson by explaining to the students that they are going to learn about the letter i and the sound it makes. "We hear the /i/ sound in a lot of spoken words and see the vowel i in a lot of written words. Explain to the students that the letter I is a very iiiimportant letter to learn! Today we are going to learn how to spell and read words that have the /i/ sound.

2.) Ask students: Have you ever gotten something really sticky on your hands, like gum or glue? Show students picture of girl with glue on her hands. When we have this icky sticky stuff on our hands we hold out our hands like this and say, "iiiiiiicky!!!" When we make the /i/ sound our mouth is open and our tongue is slightly lowered. Can you all hold your hands out like you have something sticky on them and make the /i/ sound just like I did? Great job!

3.) Now let's try a tongue twister with the /i/ sound. "Izzy the iguana is inside the Indians igloo”. (Exaggerate the /i/ sound in each word). Now let's practice. Can everyone say that with me three times together? Now this time while we read the tongue twister, every time you hear the /i/ sound, try to stretch the /i/ sound and do the hand gesture we practiced (Iiiiiizzy the iiiiiiguana iiiiis iiiiinside the Iiiiiindians iiiiigloo). -If the children need extra emphasis underline the /i/ sounds on the chart. Great job everyone!

4.) Now let's practice finding the /i/ sound in some spoken words. Do you hear /i/ in pig or dog? run or hit? lift or drop? skin or hair? small or big?

5.) Next do a group letterbox lesson with /i/ words and throw in a couple short e and short a words for review. ([2]- is, at, in [3]-tip, win, fit, big, pal, bed, [4]-slid, chip, best, [5]-drink, split). Hand out Elkonin boxes and instruct students to turn their letters to the lowercase side. Be sure to listen so that you can hear how many boxes you will use for each word.  Tell students, "Now I'm going to show you how to spell a word using the Elkonin boxes. Each of the boxes represents a separate sound in the word. For example, I want to spell the word fin, like a fin on a fish. There are three separate sounds in fin: fffff, iiiii, nnnn. If there are three sounds there will be three boxes, one for each sound. Now watch how I spell it using 3 boxes for the 3 different sounds.  The first sound I hear is the /f/ sound so I am going to put a f in the first box. /f//iiii//nn/.  I think I hear our icky sticky sound next so I will put an i in the second box. /f//ii//nnn/, n is the last sound so I will put it in the last box.  I think that is all the sounds in fin, but let me make sure. /ffff//iiii//nnnn/ Yes!  That’s how you spell sit!  Now let’s see if you can do some on your own.”

6.) After modeling how to spell and read the /i/ words, begin the letterbox lesson with the students. Give the students one word at a time to spell while the teacher walks around the room to check their progress.  If I students misspells a word pronounce it exactly as they have it spelled and ask them to try again themselves. Start with the two phoneme words and move up to the five phoneme words. After each word is spelled by all students then move on to the next.  Once all the students have the word spelled correctly move on to the next word. LBL: [2]- is, at, in [3]-tip, win, fit, big, pal, bed, [4]-slid, chip, best, [5]- drink, split

7.) After all of the words have been spelled by the students with the boxes, take up the boxes. Have students read the words as I spell the words for them. Listen as children respond to make sure they are able to correctly read each word. If a student is having trouble, encourage them to use body‑coda blending.

8.) Divide the students into pairs and introduce the book Tin Man Fix-it.  Give a book talk to introduce the book.  "Today we are going to read “Tin Man Fix‑It.”  This book is about a tin man named Tim and his friend Jim. One day, Tim and Jim are outside working in the garden when out of no where, a big kid named Sid comes flying by on his skateboard and runs into Tim!  Tim is on the ground in a bunch of pieces!  Sid broke Tim!  Let’s find out what happens to Tim." Have each student read the story aloud to a partner using their quiet voices. (Have one partner read and then switch). Walk around and observe students as they are reading.

9.) Have students write a message about their favorite animal. Before they begin, model to students how to write a message by providing them with an example. They can work on their message while students are being called up individually for assessment.

10.) Assessment: Give each student a pseudoword test with /i/ words Ask them to read the following `silly words': gib, sif, rin, hin, wid.


Murray, Bruce. The Reading Genie.  http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie

Williams, Andrew.  Icky Sticky Iguana!  


Click here to return to Perspectives