Licking Our Lips With L

Emergent Literacy

Madison Boyd


Rationale: This lesson will help children identify /l/, the phoneme represented by L. Students will learn to recognize /l/ in spoken words by learning a meaningful representation (licking their lips) and the letter symbol L, practice finding /l/ in words, and apply phoneme awareness with /l/ in phonetic cue reading.


Materials: chart paper with tongue twister written on it, primary paper, pencils, chart paper with Lizards in a Log, plain white paper, assessment worksheet




1. Say: Our written language is a secret code. The tricky part is learning what letters stand for –the mouth moves we make as we say words. Today we're going to work on spotting the mouth move /l/. We spell /l/ with the letter L. The letter L looks like where your pointer finger and thumb come together, and /l/ sounds like licking your lips.


2. Say: Let's pretend to lick our lips, /l/, /l/, /l/. [Pantomime licking lips] Notice what your tongue does? The tongue starts on the roof of the mouth behind the front teeth. The tongue sometimes rolls down at the end of the /l/ sound for certain words. If the /l/ sound is at the end of the word, your tongue will start resting on your bottom teeth and then roll up to the roof of your mouth. Your mouth is also open for both /l/ sounds.


3. Say: Now I want to show you how to find the /l/ sound in the word like. I am going to say the word and stretch it out as slow as I can and you are going to listen for the "licking our lips" sound. Llll-iii-k-e. Let's all say it together now even slower. Lllllll-iiiiii-kk-e. Did you feel how your tongue started at the top of your mouth and rolled down? I felt it!



4. Say: Let's try a tongue twister [on chart]. "Lisa lost the large lemon for the lizard Lenny loved." Now let's say it three times together. Now let's say it again and stretch out the /l. sound at the beginning of each word. "Lllisa lllost the lllarge lllemon for the lllizard Lllenny llloved." We are going to say it one last time and this time break off the word: "/l/isa /l/ost the /l/arge /l/emon for the /l/izard /l/enny /l/oved."


5. [Pass out primary paper and pencil to each student].Say: We use the letter L to spell /l/. Let's practice writing capital and lower case letter L. I am going to write capital and lowercase L on the board. To write a capital L you "pull down a line and add a lap. Lie down, lazy! It's time for a nap!" I want everyone to write a capital L. After I come by and put a star next to it, I want you to make ten more just like it. Once students are done introduce lowercase letter L. While writing a lower case L on the board say "little l looks like a number one. Just draw a line and you are done!" Next I want everyone to write a lowercase L. After I come by and put a star next to it, I want you to make five more just like it.


6. Say: Now I am going to say some words and I want you to tell me if you hear the /l/ sound. [Call on students to answer and tell how they knew]. Do you hear /l/ in lake or ocean? Lamp or fan? Ball or bat? Candle or fire? Let's see if you can see my mouth move in some /l/ words. Lick your lips if you hear /l/: The, little, lamb, walked, slowly, up, the, hill.


7. Say: Let's sing a song called "Lizards in a Log". [Display the lyrics on chart paper]. [Teacher should sing first].


Five lizards live in a log. (Hold up five fingers cover them with other hand)

One left to live with a frog (Fold thumb down)

One left to live with a dog. (fold index finger down)

Two left to live with a hog (Fold middle and ring finger down.)

One little lizard living in the bog (Fold little finger.)

Is a little lonely living in a log (Make a sad face.)


 Have children join in and sing the song three times.


8. [Pass out plain white paper to each student]. Say: On your piece of paper, I want you to draw five lips. Think of words that have the /l/ sound. Inside each drawing of lips, I want you to a word with the /l/ sound. [Students are encouraged to use inventive spelling]. [Once each student is done, have them share their /l/ words with the class.


9. For the assessment, have students color the pictures that begin with the letter sound /l/ on the activity sheet.


Resource: Lick Your Lollipop with L by Kelly Meyer

Assessment Worksheet:


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