Drumming With D's


Emergent Literacy

Dani Rosener


 This lesson will help children identify the phoneme d = /d/, the phoneme represented by the letter d. Students will learn to recognize /d/ in spoken words by learning a meaningful representation (hands drumming in the air while vocalizing the phoneme /d/) and the letter symbol d, practice finding d in words, and applying phoneme awareness with /d/ in phonetic cue reading while distinguishing rhyming words from beginning letters.


 Primary Paper



Drawing Paper

Chart with the tongue tickler "Dani Dunks Donuts with Doug at Dawn."

Word cards with DOT, DEAR, DULL, DUNK, DARK and DRIP

Assessment Worksheet identifying pictures with /d/

"Dawdle the Day Away" by Dani Rosener, a poem with d alliteration




1. Say:  Our written language is a secret code. The trick is learning what the letters stand for- the mouth moves we make as say words.  Today we are going to work on spotting the mouth move for /d/.  We spell /d/ with the Letter D.  D looks like a half moon, and the /d/ sounds like we are beating a drum.


2. Let's pretend to beat our drum.  When I say go, I want you to beat three times for /d/, /d/, /d/.  (Pantomime a drumming motion while saying /d/)/  Notice how the tip of your tongue starts at the top of your gums behind your front teeth and pops down? When we say /d/, we are pushing air through our mouths while we move our tongue. Try it! Yes, very good!


3.  Let me show you how to find /d/ in the word drum.  I'm going to stretch out the word in slow motion and listen for my drum beat.  Dddd-rr-uu-mm.  Again.  DDDdddd-rrr-uummmm.  Did you see how my tongue hits the back of my teeth and came down? I can almost feel that drum beat when my tongue hits the tops of my gums.


4. Let's try a tongue tickler. "Dani dunks donuts with Doug at dawn."  Can we stretch out that drum beat?  Every time we hear it is at the beginning of the words.  Like this, "Dddani ddddunks, etc." Now, let's see if we can pull that drum beat off of our words.  "Dddd-ani ddd-unks dddd-onuts, etc."


5.  (Bring out primary paper and pencil) We use the letter D to spell /d/.  Captial D looks like a half moon.  We can also practice lowercase d.  First, make a lowercase c.  Then, right next to the c, begin at the rooftop, and connect a straight line on the side for our c until we reach the sidewalk. Once I see that you have it, and I give you a sticker for your hard work, I want you to make nine more just like it! 


6.  I want you to listen to the words and sounds I am going to say.  You can tell me if you hear /d/ in these words.  Do you hear /d/ in dream or awake? Down or up? Cat or dog?


7.  Now, beat your drum if you hear /d/ in any of the words I say. "Time, dear, book, monkey, dessert, double, rose"


8.  Read the poem I wrote about daydreaming.  I want you to listen for the sound that you hear the most. 


"Dawdle the Day Away" by Dani Rosener





                               We dream from dusk to dawn,




                                                                               We dream the day away!


Can you think of any other words that start with that sound?  If you can think of a D alliteration poem yourself, I want you to write it as best as you can.  You may even draw a picture!  I would love to display them on my "Dreaming of . . ." board. 


9.  Show the word cards to the student.  Ask which word it is (cues are on the back) Model: I hear the drum beat in this word, so this tells me the word is dark. Let's see if you can tell me some new words!




Have the students turn in their alliteration poem for a sample.  Also, set any missed flashcards aside to address during a review.

Pass out the worksheet from www.kidzone.ws/kindergarten/d-begins/htm







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