Chubby Chimps Chugging Chocolate Milkshakes

Emergent Literacy

Megan Stephenson

Rationale: For children to be able to read and spell words, it is crucial for them to understand letters that stand for phonemes. They also need to have knowledge of and understand of alphabetic mapping and be able to relate it to understand the phonemes in spoken words. In some cases, phonemes are represented by digraphs, or two letters.  We can refer to these as "letter teams".  In this lesson, children will undergo the learning of a meaningful representation of the digraph /ch/ and fully understand how these two letters work together to create this phoneme. The concept of this lesson is for children to be able to recognize /ch/ by its letter symbols, a beginning sound in spoken words, and in written words.  Towards the end of the lesson, I will briefly review some words with /ch/ ending sound but it won’t be explicitly taught early in the lesson. The focus is beginning sounds.


Materials: Primary paper and pencil; clipboard; marker; chart with "Chubby Chimps Chugging Chocolate Milkshakes "; drawing paper and crayons; "Chips for the Chicks" By Geri Murray ; word cards with "ch" words,  assessment worksheet identifying pictures with /ch/ (URL below).



 1. Say: The way we speak and write is sort of like a code. Sometimes, it can be tricky learning what letters stand for. But, there are fun ways to learn how our mouth moves we make as we say words. Today, we will be working on the mouth move /ch/ and how the two letters c and h work together as a team to make this sound. When two letters work together to make one sound we call it a digraph, or "letter team". Let’s learn more about how this letter team works!



2. Let’s pretend we are hearing the sound of a train passing by! Have you ever heard that sound? It sounds like /ch/, /ch/, /ch/, right? Use your arms to chug with me like a train does "Choo, Choo, Choo" or /Ch/, /ch/, /ch/.


3. For the next step, we will review mouth move. Say: "What is your mouth doing when you make that sound? Is there any air coming out? Yes, very good. There is air coming out. This is because your tongue moves from the roof of your mouth to the bottom while your mouth forces the air out." We are going to practice listening for this sound and watch my mouth how it moves when I say the different words!

"Do you hear ch in chalk or shake?"

"Do you hear ch in make or chase?"

"Do you hear ch in shell or chew?"

"Do you hear ch in cash or chair?"

"Do you hear ch in shoe or champ?"



4. Say: Okay, now I’m going to say a bunch of funny words all put together in a silly sentence. This is called a tongue twister [on chart]. Let’s try this together! "Chubby Chimps Chugging Chocolate Milkshakes." Okay let us say it three times together. Now that we can say this tongue twister, this time, let’s says it and practice stretching the /ch/ at the beginning of off all the words.  Can you hear /ch/ in every word? Say each of them slowly. Try it again and this time, break it off the word:" /Ch/ubby /Ch/imps /Ch/ugging /Ch/ocolate Milkshakes". I think we have got a good handle on listening for the /ch/ sound, now we can practice how to write it!



5. The student will take out primary paper, pencil, and a clipboard if needed and I will prepare him to being writing. Say: Remember, the letters c and h work together as a team to spell /ch/. Start with your pencil just a little bit below the fence, move your pencil up to the fence and back around, touching the ground, and stop your pencil just above the ground. There is your c. Now take your pencil to the sky, and move it straight down to the ground. Go back up to the fence, around, and straight down to the ground. Now you have your h. These two letters together make /ch/. Practice writing this combination on your own.


6. Say: Now, we are going to be able to use our skills of listening for this /ch/sound when we read this book, Chips for the Chicks.  In this book, there are baby chicks, a couple of children, and a dog. They are all hungry and see a bag of chips. Throughout the story, we will be guessing who is going to get to eat the chips. I can’t wait to read to find out more! As I read the book the first time, use this marker and mark next to every word that you hear the /ch/ sound in. After I read, we can go back and review these words together. Then, the student will read the text aloud with me and gain valuable practice with the /ch/ sound. Book: Chips for the Chicks by Geri Murray



7. Say: One thing we also need to talk about is that /ch/ can also be found at the end of the word. In most of the words we have seen and hear today, they begin with /ch/. We can also find the /ch/ sound in the middle or end of words. Listen to these word pairs, do you hear the /ch sound? CHURCH or CAST. FEET or FRENCH. BEACH or BEAM. SACK or SUCH. So, remember that you can find the /ch/sound in words in many different ways. Now, we are going to brain storm together and try to think of some more /ch/ words we know. [Pull out a sheet of paper and write words that you and the student brainstorm]


8. For assessment, all that needs to be done is handing out a worksheet. Students are to complete the partial spellings and color the pictures that include the correspondence /ch/.







Eldredge, J. Lloyd. (1995). Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms. New Jersey:
Prentice Hall. Pg. 63-64.

Murray, Geri. Chips for Chicks.



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