Pink Pigs love Picnic Parties

   By Susanna Pate  

Emergent Literacy


In order to read and spell words, children must understand that letters stand for sounds or "phonemes" and that these phonemes are mapped out in letters or "graphemes" in the spelling of words. Since letter recognition and grapheme-phoneme awareness is such an important factor to beginning readers, this lesson will concentrate on presenting and enhancing both with the letter p.  In the lesson, the students will be able to recognize /p/ in verbal words and will also be able to write uppercase and lowercase p’s.


1.      Chart paper

       Primary paper

3.      Paper to make a class book about the letter P

       Picture cards with p-and non-p words, (pig, boat, pizza, cat, pear, flower, princess, heart)

5.      Poster board with an upper and lower case p on it

        Chart with Pink Pigs love Picnic Parties written on it. 

7.      Markers

        The book “The Paper Princess” by Elisa Kleven, New York, NY. Penguin Group. 1994.

9.      Worksheet with p and non p objects to circle (Peanut, corn, puppet, dog, purse, horse, pig.)




1.  1.   To begin we will review previous letters learned and the sounds that they make.  Who remembers what the sound M makes? Who remembers what the sound U makes? etc. Start the lesson off by explaining how the alphabet is like a secret code and that learning which sound each letter stands for and how the mouth moves for each sound is the hard part.  Today, we are going to learn about the letter p and the sound it makes. Can anyone tell me what sound p makes? If they are correct, say: That is right, good job! A p makes a /p/ sound. When we say the /p/ sound, our lips push together and then open up to let a rush of air come out of our mouths. It sounds kind of like when you pop bubbles in the bathtub. Let’s see if you can make the /p/ sound like popping bubbles.  Repeat after me: /p/. Wonderful job!


2.     2.  Now, I am going to say a tongue twister that has p’s in it [on chart]. Pop your bubbles when you hear the /p/ sound. Pink Pigs love Picnic Parties. Everybody say it after me. Let’s say it one more time. Now, let’s say it again and stretch out the /p/ in each word. Model to the students and then have them do it themselves. Ppppink, ppppigs love pppicnic, ppparties. Now let’s break off the word: /p/ ink /p/ igs love /p/ icnic /p/ arties. Now have them do it. Nice job!


3.      3. Now that we know what a p sounds like and can hear it in words, we’re going to learn what it looks like and how to write it. Pass out primary paper to students. Show them the poster board of what a p looks like. Then, show them on chart paper how to write the letter P, upper and lowercase.  Start off at the rooftop, drop down to the sidewalk, then go back to the rooftop and make a backwards C in the air. Now, you try it. Now, write 4 uppercase p’s and 4 lowercase p’s. Go around the room to make sure they are writing them correctly and help them if they are having trouble.


4.      4. I’m going to say some words, and if you hear the /p/ sound, use your fingers to pop the bubbles. Say: pickles, chocolate, pillows, flower, pajamas. Go over the words that have the /p/ sound by stretching it out.


5.     5. I’m going to show you some pictures. If you hear the /p/ sound for an object, use your finger to pop your bubble.  Show pictures of a pig, boat, pizza, cat, pear, flower, princess, heart . Go over each one and stretch out the /p/ sound in the p words.


6.     6.  Now, we’re going to play a game. I am going to say two words. One will have a /p/ sound and the other won’t. Pop your bubbles on the words that have the /p/ sound. Do you hear /p/ in purple or blue? Bag or purse? Potato or Tomato? Pickles or lettuce? Eagle or parrot? Go over each.


7.     7. Next, read “The Paper Princess” by Elisa Kleven.  Every time they hear the /p/ sound have them use their fingers to pop the bubbles.  In “The Paper Princess” a young girl makes a paper doll and is trying to add the finishing touches when all of a sudden a gust of wind blows her doll away! The paper doll sets out on a journey back to the little girl.  Will she be able to find her again or will the wind take her too far away?


8.      8. We are going to write two sentences with words starting with the letter P in them.  I want you to have at least three words with P in it, but try to have as many as you can.  When you are done writing your sentences, pick one sentence and draw a picture that goes along with it.  When finished we will let everyone say one of their sentences.  I will take your papers and we will make a book for the entire class to enjoy!  When the students are writing their sentences encourage them to use inventive spelling and to be creative.  Walk around the room to be there if they should need help.


9.      9. Along with the sentences the students have written a way to assess the students after the lesson is to create a worksheet that has pictures of p and non p words.  Have them circle the words that have the letter p in them. (Peanut, corn, puppet, dog, purse, horse, pig.)



Harris, Katherine. “Penelope, the Precious Pig”

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

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