Inside Igloos with Icky Fingers



Emergent Literacy

Erin Taylor


Rationale: In order to read and write students must learn that letters represent phonemes in written words.  The way that the written words are spelled tells the reader which phonemes should be said.  In order to understand which phoneme should be said in a written context, a student first should be able to identify the phoneme in a spoken context.  Short vowels are the first phonemes that should be worked on for identifying in spoken words because they are harder for students to recognize.  This lesson will help students identify /i/ (short i).  They will learn to identify /i/ in spoken words by learning a meaning name for the phoneme along with the letter representation and then practice identify /i/ in words.


Materials: Liz is Six (Educational Insights); poster with "In the igloo, the Indian was ill with his injuries." primary paper and pencils; picture page worksheet with pig, cat, grill, wig, swing, lips, nest, plane, swim, chin.



1. Introduce the lesson by explaining how when we say words our mouth moves differently for different sounds (phonemes).  The sounds (phonemes) we say depend on the letters in the words so we have to know what a letter sounds like in order to be able to read it or write it.  Today we're going to work on finding /i/.  Like most things it might be hard at first but by the end you'll be able to find it just fine.


2. Ask students: Have you ever had sticky glue stuck on your hands? Well that feels icky and when we say icky we hear /i/.  Now let's pretend that we've all got sticky icky glue on our hands and say /i/. 


3.  We're going to try a tongue twister (on poster).  In the igloo, the Indian was ill with his injuries.  Let's say it 2 more times together.  Now I want you to say it but this time stretch out the /i/ at the beginning of the words. "Iiiin the iiigloo, the Iiiindian was iiill with his iiiinjuries.  Now this time break off the /i/ from the word when you say it. "/i/ n the /i/ gloo, the /i/ ndian was /i/ ll with his /i/ njuries. 


4. (Students will need to take out primary paper and pencils.) To spell /i/, we use i.  To write it we start at the fence and make a straight line to the sidewalk.  Then we put a small dot above our straight line between the fence and rooftop. When you see i by itself it tells us to say /i/.  I am going to see everyone's i and then after I put a check on your paper make 9 more by yourself on your paper.


5.  Now we're going to find the icky /i/ in the word thin.  First I am going to stretch it out slowly so you can hear it. Th-th-th-i-n.  Th-th-th-th-i-i-i-i…There's the icky /i/ in thin. 


6. Ask students to answer and explain how they knew the answers to the following: Do you hear /i/ in big or small? Sit or stand? Buzz or ring? Pink or red?  Now we're going to see if you can pick out /i/ in some words.  Hold out your sticky icky fingers if you hear /i/.  In, the, igloo, the, Indian, was, ill, with, his, injuries.  


7. Say: "It's Liz's 6th birthday party.  Her friend some of her friends, including pig, are there with her.  She got a mitt for one of her presents so they decide to play baseball.  First pig bats and hits the ball and Liz gets it in her mitt.  Then it's Liz's turn to bat and she hits.  Pig is running fast for the ball to try and catch it.  Will he make it in time? Read Liz is Six and talk before turn while reading.  Then read the story again and have students hold out their sticky icky fingers when they hear /i/.  Then have the students write a sentence using one of the words they heard /i/ in from the story. 


8. Pass out picture page worksheet and have each student circle the pictures whose names have /i/. 


Sparkman, Rachel. Icky Sticky Kitty!

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