Blowing Bubble Gum with B

By Killian Hodo

Rationale: This lesson is designed to help students recognize the /b/ phoneme which is represented by the letter B. Students will learn to recognize /b/ in spoken word by learning meaningful representation (Bouncing a ball). Students will also learn to recognize the letter symbol B. The students will practice finding /b/ in words and will apply phoneme awareness with /b/ in the phonetic cue reading by distinguishing rhyming words from beginning letters.

Materials: Primary paper, pencil; poster with "Bradley blows big bubbles with his bubblegum."; Bubble Gum, Bubble Gum by Lisa Wheeler; Drawing paper and crayons; Word cards with Ben, Bill, blue, bike, bit, not, bat, and Sam; Assessment worksheet with /b/ (URL listed in resources).


1. Say: "Our language is a secret code. The tricky part is learning what each letter stands for in the alphabet. Today, we are going to work on spotting the mouth move for /b/. We spell /b/ with the letter B. /b/ sounds like a ball bouncing on the ground.

2. Let's pretend to be a ball bouncing, /b/ /b/ /b/ /b/ (act as if you are bouncing a ball). Notice what your lips are doing (lips together and then come apart).

3. Let me show you how to find /b/ in barge. I'm going to stretch barge out in super slow motion and listen for my bouncing ball. Bbbb-aaaa-rrr-gggeee. There it was! I felt my lips come apart. I can feel the bouncing ball /b/ in barge.

4. Let's try a tongue twister (on the poster). "Bradley blows big bubbles with his bubblegum." Everybody say it three times together. Now say it again and this time, stretch the /b/ at the beginning of the words." Bbbradley bbblows bbbig bbbubbles with his bbbubblegum." Try it again, and this time break /b/ off the word: "/b/radley /b/lows /b/ig /b/ubbles with his /b/ubblegum."

5. Everybody get out your paper and pencil so we can learn how to draw the letter B. Start with a line that goes from the roof all the way the sidewalk. Now, we are going to make a curved line to fence and connect it to the line we just made. Then, we are going to start at the fence and make another, slightly smaller curved line up to the roof and connect it to the first line. Now try it five more times on your own. Now, let's look at little b. Start by making a line from the roof all the way to the sidewalk. Then starting at the fence we are going to make a curved line and connect it to the bottom of the first line. Great job! Now let's draw little b five more times on your own.

6. Call on students to answer and tell how they knew the answer:  Do you hear /b/ in bake or kite? Trash or bash? Basket or rad? Say: Let's see if you can spot the mouth move /b/ in some words. Bounce your ball if you hear /b/: bag, tag, hide, bride, lake, break.

7. Show the card with Bill and model how to decide if it's Bill or Will. The B tells me to bounce my ball, /b/, so this word is Bbbbb-ill, Bill. You try some: BLUE: blue or clue? BIKE: like or bike? BIT: sit or bit? BAT: bat or rat?

8. Say: "We are going to read this exciting book about some animals that one-by-one get stuck in bubble gum that has melted in the road. They must survive encounters with a big truck and black bear. Read to see if the animals survive! Throughout the story, every time we come across the /b/ phoneme, the students will bounce their ball. After the story each student will come up with a word that starts with the letter B and draw a picture to go with the word. "Can you think of any more words that start with the letter/b/? If so, can you write down the word and draw a picture about the word? If not, I will be walking around to help, so just raise your hand."

9. For the assessment, distribute the worksheet. Students are to cut out the words that have the phoneme /b/ and are to glue those words in the spaces provided. As students are completing the assessment, call students up individually to read the phonetic cue words from step 7.



Cosper, Liz

Knight, D.D.



Lisa Wheeler, Bubble Gum, Bubble Gum, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 4/28/2004, 32.


Return to Rendezvous' Index