Silly Sarah the Slimy Snake

Cassie Cherof

Emergent Literacy





Phoneme awareness is such an important concept for young children to grasp before learning to read.  When students are able to identify phonemes, words can be pronounced or, attempt to be pronounced, easier.  This lesson will focus on the phoneme /s/.  The students should be able to learn and recognize /s/ in spoken words and be able to write the letter properly, uppercase and lowercase.  The students will also be able to determine different words that begin with /s/ and have /s/ incorporated in the words.  By having the students focus on certain letters, phoneme awareness will grow and the student will be able to recognize sounds of that particular letter.


Primary paper and a pencil (2 of each)

Picture of a snake, with phoneme s incorporated on it

Paper with tongue twister written on it: Sarah is a slimy snake that sings sweet songs so she won’t seem scary.

Piece of paper containing different words on it for, “do you hear the letter s in…” Hit, sit, stay, play, moon, star, sidewalk, driveway

Silly Sally by: Audrey Wood (Big Book)

Note card with hissing snake on it

Drawing paper and crayons

Worksheet with different pictures, some that begin with the letter s and other that do not {cat, flower, snail, sun, book, stairs, umbrella, butterfly, shoe, and apple}.

Procedure: Introduce the lesson by explaining that we have many letters in the alphabet that make many different sounds and it is difficult learning what each letter says. Today we are going to learn about the letter s and the sound it makes.

''Todays class we will be discussing a very sssssneaky letter.  I want you to guess what letter we will be learning about by listening to the words that I ssssssay.  When you think you know my letter, I want you to raise your hand quietly; do not shout it out, because that will give it away.''

I will then say the tongue twister and see if the students catch on to what letter I am dragging out.  ''Ssssssarah is a ssssslimy sssssnake that sssssings sssssweet sssssongs sssso she won’t sssseem ssssscary.''  Great, the letter /s/ says sssssss.  Hopefully the students will catch on.

Once they have recognized the letter /s/, I will show my student a picture of a slithery snake and introduce a hand motion to help them remember the letter /s/ (moving your hands like a sneaky snake)

I will then test their understanding and ability to recognize the letter s by giving them different words and instructing them to tell me which word has an s in it.

Do you hear the sssss in… Hit or sit? Stay or play? Moon or star? Sidewalk or driveway?

I will then begin to introduce the book, Silly Sally.  I am going to be using a big book because it is great for the students to see the pictures and the words as I read.  Using big books makes it easier for the children to follow along to what I am reading. 

Book talk:  Silly Sally is a crazy girl.  She does a crazy thing as she walks into town.  Some of her animal friends join her in her silly walk to town.  I wonder what the town’s people are going to think about her silly self.  Let’s read and find out how silly Sally is.  I will proceed to read the story one time through discussing the important details of the story.

I will then give my student a pencil and a piece of primary paper and we will practice writing the letter s, now that we have heard the /s/ sound in some words. I will first model how to properly write the letter s on my sheet of paper. I will tell them to form a c up in the air between the rooftop and the fence then swing back.  I will also explain the different between writing a capital S and a lowercase s. A capital letter is done the same way, but you will use the sky line of the dotted line to the ground, the dotted fence is not used in the capital /s/.  I will then instruct my student to write 10 s’s on their paper and to try to write words that they remember that have an s in it

After my student get finished practicing his/her letter writing, I will read Silly Sally again.  This time I will pass out note cards with /s/ snakes on it and will have the students raise their card every time they hear the letter or sound /s/.  ''Ok, now, I want to see how well you can pay attention to the sounds that you hear.  I am going to pass out these cards.  What is this a picture of? (a snake)  What letter shape is the snake in?  (/s/)  Ok, I want us to use our cards and I am going to read Silly Sally over again and I want you to listen to for the sound or the letter /s/. During the reading of the story I am going to use highlight tape to highlight the letter /s/ for the students to see more clearly.  When you hear the /ssss/ sound or hear the letter /s/ I want you to hold up your card quietly.  Make sure that you think about when you want to put your card up.''

After reading the story and having the students hold up their /s/ cards, I will have my student draw a picture of their favorite /s/ word.  I will also ask the students to do their best to write as much as they can about their picture, using invented spelling.



The assessment is going to be an activity that the students will do individually.  The students will be given a piece of paper with the /s/ words and a clip art picture on it.  The student will circle the /s/ word (sand, sit, sad, nest, etc.).  My student will receive a star sticker once the activity is comleted.


            - Lesson Design: “Slithering Snakes” by: Debbie Troha

            - Wood, Audrey. Silly Sally. New York, NY. Scholastic Inc, 1992. 32 pages.

            - Joyful Learning in Kindergarten by: Bobbi Fisher; Heinemann Publication (1998)

- James, Karen. Kindergarten, Auburn, AL, 2006. Auburn Early Education Center, Auburn, AL.

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