Chugga Lugga CHOO CHOO!!

Beginning Reading
Kendra Haywood


Rationale: To learn how to read and write, children must be able to comprehend that letters stand for different phonemes and that some of the same letters don't have the same phoneme meanings.  Teaching phonics includes incorporating decoding, encoding, and spelling all in one subject.  Children must be able to detect phonemes in spoken words before they are able to match the equivalent letters to their phonemes.  Being knowledgeable about simple digraphs is one of the important fundamentals for learning spoken words.  Digraphs are "voiceless" groupings of two consonants.  Some students get confused and don't understand why some 2 letters combined make one sound.  This lesson will help students to identify ch=/ch/.  They will be able to recognize /ch/ in spoken words by learning a corresponding hand gesture that goes along with the phoneme and also a picture that represents the phoneme.  The students will also be able to practice finding /ch/ in different words and pictures. 

Materials: Primary paper, pencil, poster board with "Charlie the Choo Choo train changed his name to Chuck."; Book: Chugga Chugga Choo Choo, by: Kevin Lewis. Pictures of words (cheetah, chip, chin, clip, punch), letterboxes, letters (c,h,I,p,r,a,t,o,e,c,k,u,n,b), drawing paper, crayons or markers

Procedures: 1. Introduce the lesson by explaining that we are going to learn about the digraph, /ch/.  Explain that some letters like to stick together as friends and the friend's c and h stick together and make one sound /ch/.  Today, we're going to work on the sound /ch/.  After we learn how to say the /ch/ sound, we will then learn how to spell and read /ch/ words.  At first, it may be hard to spot the /ch/ letters together, but once you practice, you'll be able to find and pronounce /ch/ in every word!

2. (Show train picture and letter correspondence.) Have you ever heard a train go by and the wheels on the track sound like /ch/?  That's the noise we will make today as we learn about the letter friends c and h.  Let's pretend we are trains and we are moving down the tracks.  Say /ch/ while we use both of our arms to chug us around on the tracks like this. (model how to move both of your ams at the same time, back and forth, and say /ch/ at the same time).  I don't think we're going fast enough…Let's try again and tell everyone that we're coming down the tracks../ch/ /ch/ /ch/ /ch/!

3. Now, let's try a tongue twister (on poster). "Charlie the choo choo train changed his name to Chuck."  Now let's say it again three more times.  Those letter friends are kind of tricky, but you'll get it! Now let's say it again, but this time let's stretch the /ch/ at the beginning of the words, like this.. "Cccccchhhhharlie the ccccchhhhhoo ccccchhhhhoo train ccccchhhhhanged his name to ccccchhhhhuck."  This time, let's break the /ch/ sound on each word: "/ch/arlie the  /ch/oo /ch/oo train /ch/anged his name to /ch/uck."

4. Call on students to answer and have them tell me how they know the /ch/ sound in each word.  Do you hear /ch/ in chip or snack? Throw or catch? Dollar or check? Change or paper? Cheese or dish?

5. Letterbox Lesson: Let me show you how to spell /ch/ in the word chalk.  Since c and h are such good friends, they are going to be together in one letterbox.  (model to student).  Spell the word chalk on the letterboxes and make sure the student understands how to do it.   I will sound out each phoneme when I put the letters on the boxes.  Having an extra set of letterboxes can be helpful so the student can go along with me while I show him/her how to spell the word.  I will then allow the student to spell different words for me with his/her letterboxes, including:

2). chi

3). chip, rich, chat, chop, chend(pseudoword)

4.) chunch (pseudoword), check

5.) brunch

6. I will have the above words typed on a piece of paper and will have the student read the words to me.  I will model the first word, which will be my example word, chalk and then allow him/her to read the rest of the words to me. 

7. I think you are beginning to turn into experts with /ch/.  Show me how good you have gotten at hearing /ch/ by using both of our arms to chug us around on the tracks when you hear /ch/ in the book I'm going to read called, Chugga Chugga Choo Choo. From sunrise to bed time, a smiling engineer and his beautiful train sets off for a journey to deliver toys.  The train goes all over the place, up the mountains, down the valleys, and over the bridges.  But will the train ever make it to the city to deliver the toys on time?  To find out, we'll have to read Chugga Chugga Choo Choo.  Read the story to them.  Read the story again and have the students use their arms to chug, like they are making the /ch/ sound, every time they hear words with /ch/.  After reading the story a second time, have the students draw a train and write a message using inventive spelling.  Display their work in the classroom.

8. For assessment, I'm going to pass out the random pictures of the different objects.  Some of the pictures have the /ch/ sound in them and some do not.  Have students circle every object that has the /ch/ sound in it. (Pictures include:(cheetah, chip, chin, clip, punch).


Consonants, Blends, and Diagraphs.

Lewis, Kevin. Chugga Chugga Choo Choo. Hyperion Books for Children.


Picture of train. Retrieved March 9, 2008.$file/CartoonTrainMed.gif

Rosko, Natasha. (2007). A Beginning Reading Design.  Auburn

University Reading Genie Website: retrieved March 9, 2008.

Zickos, Megan.  (2007). A Beginning Reading Design.  Auburn University Reading

Genie Website: retrieved March 9, 2008.

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