Spooky with oo

Animated Horror Ghost (33)

Beth Harrelson

Beginning Reading



This lesson teaches children about the long vowel correspondence oo = /oo/. In order to read, children must first learn to recognize the spellings that map word pronunciations. In this lesson children will learn to recognize, spell, and read words containing the spelling oo. They will learn a meaningful representation (a looming ghost), they will spell and read words containing this spelling in a letterbox lesson, and read a decodable book that focuses on the correspondence oo = /oo/.



Correspondence card (oo=/oo/); graphic image of ghost; tongue twister poster; letterboxes (for each child); letters (for each child); index cards with words for kids (moo, zoo, cool, mood, gloom, food, spoon, most, loon, same, loop, looch (pseudoword)); Pig on the loose book; worksheet; dry erase board and markers,



1. Say: “In order to become expert readers we need to learn the code that tells us how to pronounce words. We have already learned to read short vowel words with o=/o/, like cop, and today we are going to learn what a word sounds like when we put two o’s together (show correspondence card “oo=/oo/). When I hear /oo/, I think of a looming moaning ghost (show graphic image and demonstrate hand movements in which you put your hands above your head, wiggle your fingers, and say “ooooo”).  Now let’s look at the spelling of /oo/ that we’ll learn today. We spell /oo/ with the letters oo.”


2. “Before we learn about the spelling of /oo/, we need to listen for it in some words. When I listen for /oo/ in words, I hear oo say its name by making a little o shape with my lips, like this (demonstrate). I’ll show you first: doom. I heard oo say its name and I felt my lips make a little o. Now I want you to try. I am going to read our tongue twister for the day off of our poster. When you hear the /oo/ sound, make your hands look like a ghosts. ‘Oodles of noodles oozed from my poodle.’ I heard ‘oo’ in oodles, noodles, oozed, and poodle and my lips made the o shape. Now, you try and remember to make your ghost hands.”


3. “What if I want to spell the word bloom?  ‘The flowers bloom every spring.’ Bloom means to grow into a flower in this sentence. To spell bloom in letterboxes, first I need to know how many phonemes I have in the word so I stretch it out and count: /b//l//oo//m/. I need 4 boxes. I heard that /oo/ just before the m so I’m going to put an oo in the third box. The word starts with /b/, that’s easy; I need a b. The letter between /b/ and /oo/ is /l/ so I am going to put down an l. This is a consonant cluster and doesn’t have a vowel between it. The last box is still empty. ‘bloooo/m/”. I am forgetting the /m/ sound which is m. Now I will show you how I would read a tough word (display poster with spoon on the top and model reading the word). I’m going to start with oo; that part says /oo/. Now I’m going to put the beginning letters with it: s-p-oo. Now I’ll put that chunk together with the last sound: spoo-/n/. Oh, spoon, like “I need a spoon to eat my yogurt.””


4. “Now I am going to have you spell some words in letterboxes. You’ll start out easy with three boxes for moon as in “I love to look at the moon at night.” (give students a moment to solve on their own). Did you remember the /oo/ sound in the second box? I am going to check how you did while I walk around the room (constantly observe progress). You’ll need four letterboxes for the next word. Listen for the beginning sound to spell in the first box. Then listen for /oo/. Here’s the word: goofy, “He is acting very goofy today.” Goofy just means silly.  (Allow students to spell the remaining words, giving sentences for each and monitoring their progress: moo, cool, food, most, loon, same, loops)”


5. “Now I am going to let you read the words that you have spelled. “(Show the words moo, zoo, cool, mood, gloom, food, spoon, most, loon, same, loops, looch (pseudoword)). Have students read the words in unison. Afterwards, call on individuals to read one word on the list until everyone has had a turn. )


6. “You have done a great job reading words with our new spelling for /oo/: oo. Now we are going to read a book called Pig on the Loose. This story is about two children who have gotten a new pig and are excited to show it to their Aunt Sue when she comes to visit because they are sure she will love it. The only problem is that the pig can’t be found! Let’s pair up and take turns reading Pig on the loose to find out where the pig went.” (Children pair up and take turns reading alternate pages while the teacher walks around the room monitoring progress. After individual paired reading, the class rereads the book chorally, stopping between page turns to discuss the story.)


7. “Before we finish up with our lesson about one way to spell /oo/, I want to see you practice using oo=/oo/ with this worksheet. On this worksheet there are pictures that have the /oo/ sound in their spellings. Say the words out loud first if you have to in order to make sure that you are including all of the sounds in the word. At the bottom of the pages is a game where you must search for the words you just spelled. If you can’t find a word the way you spelled it on the top, go back and check your spelling to be sure you included all of the sounds.” (Collect worksheets to assess individual child progress)


Assessment worksheet http://www.free-phonics worksheets.com/images/phonics_worksheet_v2-16.pdf


Murray, G. (2006) Pig on the Loose, Reading Genie: http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/bookindex.html


Murray. Instructing Beginning Reading Lesson Design.


Thompson, Lauren. “Boo says, “oooo!”: http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/doorways/thompsonlbr.htm


Smith, Elizabeth. Boo! Happy Halloween said the ghost”: http://www.auburn.edu/%7Emes0030/smithbr.htm

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