Isabella's Sticky Icky Iguana Kicks!

Jessica Higgins

Beginning Readers


Rationale:  Students will learn the phoneme /i/ that is represented by the grapheme i.  Beginning stage readers need to be phonemically aware in order to be successful.  Students will learn /i/ by combining the connection between the grapheme and phoneme. 



                        -Phoneme picture of /i/=sticky icky

                        - Chart paper with the tongue twister:  ���Isabella���s Sticky Icky Iguana���s Kicks���

                        - Letter tiles (per student)

                                    {c, g, I, k(2), l(2), n, p, s ,t}

                        - One set at teacher���s desk


                        -Letterboxes (per student and one for teacher���s desk)

                        -Chart paper with pseudowords printed on it

                        -Cover up critters (popsicle sticks with googley-eyes)

                        - Copies of Tin Man Fix It, a decodable book featuring phoneme /i/. (one per two students)

                        - Primary Paper

                        - Paper with fit, ship, trip, and spilt printed on it.



1.Today we are going to learn the letter i. i makes the sound /i/. Class can you all say /i/? /i/.  Pay attention to your mouth movements when you say /i/.  When I hear /i/ I think sticky icky.  Shake your hands like you have something sticky icky on them.  Show phoneme /i/ picture and keep it visual throughout the remaining of class time.  Explain they can use the picture to remember the sound of /i/ which is i.  Today class we will read and write the letter i.


2. Show the tongue twister written on chart paper. We will begin by saying aloud this silly tongue twister, ���Isabella���s Sticky Icky Iguana���s Kicks!���  Did you hear /i/? Now we will say it once more, but this time we will stretch out the /i/ sounds we hear. ���Iiiisabella���s Stiiiicky Iiiicky Iiiiquana���s Kiiiicks!��� This time while stretching out the /i/ sounds shake you sticky icky hands as well on the /i/ sounds. ���Iiiisabella���s Stiiiicky Iiiicky Iiiiquana���s Kiiiicks!��� Repeat a few times.


3. Now I want you all to listen for the /i/ sound in words I say.  Tell me which words have the /i/ sound.  Listen for /i/ in wish or dream.  Shake your sticky icky hands when you hear the /i/ sound. Wish? Dream? Repeat with: (tip, top), (plate, dish), (fish, dash), (spilt, splat).


4. Hand out letter tiles and letterboxes to each student.  We are going to spell out words in these boxes putting just one sound per one box.  For example: if I told you to spell the word tick, ttt-iiii-kkkk��ω�� and model how student will put t in the first box, I in the second box, and ck in the third box.  Be sure to point out that they will only have the number of boxes showing the number of phonemes in a word.  Now you give it a try! 


5. Now we will spell the following words: 2 phonemes (it, in ,is), 3 phonemes (kick, lick, kit, big), 4 phonemes (stick, still, clip).  Letters needed: {c, g, i, k(2), l(2), n, p, s, t} Provide a sentence with each word.  Say words slowly really making the phoneme stand out.  Monitor students��� progress.  Do not go to the next word until all students have successfully spelled the word.  If a student misspells the word read the word that was missed and see if they can correct the mistake.  If they cannot, correct spelling should be modeled to them.  If a student represents all the phonemes but does not spell it correctly, praise them for their achievement then show them the correct spelling.     


6. When letterbox lesson is completed collect materials from each student.  Now we will read the words we have just spelled.  I will point to the word on the poster and as a class read aloud the word.  We will read the words two times through.  Always monitor for those still having difficulty. 


7.  At times we come across words we stumble over.  Look at this word.  Uncover first psuedoword milo.  Model how to read milo by covering the ���lo and sounding out /mi/ then adding the /lo/ and blending them together.  Practice with other pseudowords: chilp, ditty, and strib.  As you are reading use your cover up critter to assist you with unfamiliar words.


8. Hand out the books Tin Man Fix It.  Jim has a really good friend whom is made of tin.  One day the tin man breaks.  Can Tim put tin man back together?   Read with your partner to find out!  In pairs students will read the decodable texts taking turns between pages.  Teacher will monitor students��� tasks.  A grand discussion will begin when every group has completed. 


9. Now I want you to write about a time you had sticky icky hands and what from.  You must write at least three sentences. 


10. When the students are working on their messages, the teacher will assess each student individually at the teacher desk.  Have a letterbox set up with letter tiles at the teacher���s desk.  Have them spell out the following words: (3) fin, (4) flip, (5) spilt.  Phoneme count in parentheses.  Hand student the sheet of words to read aloud.




Tin Man Fix It

*Murray, B. A., & Lesniak, T. (1999). The letterbox lesson: A hands-on approach for teaching decoding. The Reading Teacher, 52, 644- 650.

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