"Run Away with N"

Emergent Literacy Design 

By:  Hannah Paxton

"Functional understanding of the alphabetic principle depends equally on knowledge of letters and on the explicit awareness of phonemes because it depends so closely on the association between them" (Adams, 54).  Students must recognize letters and be aware of the sound, or phoneme, that is associated with the letter.  This lesson will help children identify /n/, the phoneme represented by n.  Students will learn to recognize /n/ in spoken words, the letter symbols for n, and practice finding /n/ in words.  Students will learn a meaningful representation and the letter symbol for N and n.  Students will practice phoneme awareness by finding /n/ in spoken words.



* Picture of a rabbit

* Chart with the tongue twister "Nine nimble bunnies nibbled nice nuts"

* Primary paper

* Pencil for each student

* The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown

* Assessment worksheet identifying pictures with /n/ (URL below)



1.  Say:  "Today we are going to learn about the letter n.  Our mouth makes a special move when making n's sound.  Our tongue is behind our top teeth, and air comes out of our nose.  /n/ sounds like a bunny rabbit nibbling grass."

2.  Say:  "Let's pretend to be a bunny rabbit nibbling grass, /n/, /n/, /n/."  [Flop hand by chest like rabbit paws, and exaggerate tongue behind teeth.] 

3.  Say:  "I'm going to show you how to find /n/ in the word in hand.  I'm going to stretch out hand in slow motion and listen for my nibbling bunny.  Hhh-a-a-nd.  Slower:  Hhh-a-a-an-nnn-d.  There it was!  Did you hear it?  My tongue touched behind my top teeth and air came out of my nose."

4.  Let's try a tongue twister [on chart].  Say:  "Nine nimble bunnies nibbled nice nuts.'  Let's all say it together three times.  Now let's say it again, and we'll stretch out the /n/ in the words:  'Nnninnne nnnimble bunnnnnies nnnibble nnnice nnnuts.'  Let's do say it again, but we'll break off the /n/ at the beginning of the words:  '/n/ ine /n/ imble bunnies /n/ ibbled /n/ ice /n/ uts."

5.  [Pass out primary paper and have students get out pencils].  Say:  "We spell /n/ with the letter n.  Let's start with the uppercase letter N.  We'll start at the sidewalk, go up to the rooftop, slide down to the sidewalk, and then go back up to the rooftop.   Everyone please make six capital letter N's.  I will walk around to check your work.  Now let's practice the lowercase letter n.  The lowercase letter n looks like a little bunny ear.  We'll start at the fence, go down, then up, and hump over.  Everyone please make six lowercase n's.  I will walk around and check your work."

6.  Say:  "I'm going to say two words.  I want you to raise your hand and tell me in which word you hear /n/.  Do you hear /n/ in snack or fruit?  send or mail?  grin or smile?  snug or bug?

7.  Say:  "I'm going to read you a book called The Runaway Bunny.  This story is about a little bunny who tells his mother he wants to run away from home.  Do you think the little bunny will really run away?  We'll have to read the book to find out!  While I read the story, do our funny bunny motion whenever you hear /n/." 

8.  Say:  "Now we know how to write capital and lowercase n and we know the sound that /n/ makes.  Let's practice what we learned today." 

9.  For assessment, pass out worksheet.  Say:  "Please draw a line from one nectarine to picture of an object that starts with /n/.  There are three nectarines, so try to find three things that start with /n/."  Students should draw a line from the nectarine to an object with the /n/ sound.  I will check individual worksheets to assess student's ability to find the three objects with the phoneme /n/.




Adams, Marilyn Jager.  (1990.)  Beginning to Read:  Thinking and Learning about Print.  Center for the Study of Reading, The Reading Research and Education Center, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. pp. 54.


Assessment worksheet:  http://www.kidzone.ws/kindergarten/n-begins1.htm


Bruce Murray, Brush Your Teeth with F. 


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