Meet Mrs. Lee

Beginning Reading Lesson

Haley Jacobs


Rationale: This lesson teaches children about the long vowel correspondence e­e=/E/. In order to be able to read, children must learn to recognize the spellings that map out word pronunciations. In this lesson children will learn to recognize, spell, and read words containing the spelling ee. They will learn a meaningful representation (woman shrieking), they will spell and read words containing this spelling in a letterbox lesson, and read a decodable book that focuses on the correspondence ee=/E/.

Materials: Graphic image of shrieking woman; cover-up critter; smartboard Elkonin boxes for modeling and individual Elkonin letterboxes for each student; letter manipulatives for each child and magnetic letters for teacher: g, e, r, n, d, w, p, f, z, s, q, u, b, t; list of spelling words on poster to read: bee, green, need, weep, freeze, squeeze, between, breeze; decodable text The Mean Geese, and assessment worksheet.

Procedures: 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 e like net, and today we are going to learn about long E and the spelling ee that is used to make E say its name, /E/. When I say /E/, I want you to think of a scared woman screaming, “Eeeee” (show graphic image). Now let’s look at the spelling of /E/ that we will learn today. One of the ways to spell E is with ee [Write ee on the board].

2. Say: Before we learn about the spelling of /E/, we need to listen for it in some words. When I listen for /E/ in words, I hear e say its name /E/ and lips open slightly like this. [Make vocal gesture for /E/.] I’ll show you first: feed. I heard e say its name and my lips moved slightly apart. There is a long E in feed. Now I’m going to see if it’s in jet. Hmm, I didn’t hear e say its name. Now you try. If you hear /E/ say, “I hear it!” If you don’t hear /E/ say, “Next.” Is it in bee, April, sleep, study, rain?

3. What if I want to spell the word deep? “The water in the ocean was very deep.” To spell deep in letterboxes, first I have to know how many phonemes I have in the word so I stretch it out and count: /d/ /E/ /p/. I need 3 boxes. The word starts with a /d/, that’s easy; I need a d in the first letterbox. I heard the /E/ right after /d/ so I’m going to put ee in the second letterbox. The word ends with /p/ so I’m going to put the letter p in the third letterbox.

Now I’ll show you how to read a tough word. [Display poster with geese and model reading the word.] I’m going to start with ee; that part says /E/. Now I’m going to put the beginning letters with it: t-ee, /tE/. Now I’ll put that chunk together with the last sound, /th/. Oh, teeth, like “I lost two teeth.”

4. Say: Now I’m going to have you spell some words in letterboxes. You will start out easy with two boxes for bee. To use it in a sentence, we would say, “Yesterday, I got stung by a bee.” Remember that /E/ is made with two letters. I’ll check your spelling while I walk around the room. [Observe progress.] You’ll need three letterboxes for the next word. Listen for the beginning sound to spell in the first box. Then listen for /E/. Here’s the word: need, I need to finish my homework, need. [Allow children to spell remaining words, giving sentences for each word: green, weep, freeze, between, and squeeze.]

5. Say: Now I’m going to read you the words you’ve spelled. [Show the words green, weep, freeze, between, and squeeze, the extra words knee and speed, and the pseudoword freep. Have children read words in unison. Afterwards, call on individuals to read one word on the list until everyone has had a turn.]

6. Say: You’ve done a great job and reading words with our new spelling for ee=/E/. Now we are going to read a book called The Mean Geese. This is a story about mean geese that scare away the two main characters, Lad and Scat. Lad wanted some fresh water from the stream and Scat wanted to teach her kittens how to sneak into the weeds for something to eat. Will Lad or Scat be able to reach the stream? Let’s pair up and take turns reading The Mean Geese to find out. [Children pair up and take turns reading alternate pages each while teacher walks around the room monitoring progress. After individual paired reading, the class rereads The Mean Geese chorally, stopping between page turns to discuss the story.]


7. Assessment: Say: Before we finish up with our lesson about one way to spell /E/=ee, I want to see how you can solve a reading problem. On this worksheet, we have five pictures. I want you to circle the pictures that are spelled with ee. After you circle the pictures that make the /E/ sound, you will then circle the letters that make the “ee” sounds in the words below and fill in the blanks with those letters. [Collect worksheets to evaluate individual child progress.]


Reference:” Long e and ea Words” Chelsea Armentor



Noie Yancey, Oh, Oh, My Knee Hurts:


Murray, G. (2004) The Mean Geese. Reading Genie:  


Assessment worksheet:



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