Lunch With /u/

 Lunch With /u/

Moriah Spivey

Beginning Reader Literacy

Rationale: Letter name knowledge is a very strong predictor in beginning reading achievement. Students need to learn letter names and their sounds to be good readers. Short vowels are very difficult for children to learn because several short vowel phonemes sound very similar.  In this lesson, the children will learn the short u, u =/u/. We will do this by working with a tongue twister.   Students will have practice identifying written and spoken words containing u =/u/.


-Picture of the caveman

- Sheet with tongue tickler: "Uncle was upset because he was unable to put his umbrella up."

-Letter boxes

-Letter box words: (2) - up

    (3)- tub, cut, fun, sat, ten.


-Letter Manipulative: u, p, b, t, c, f, n, s, a, e, k, z, and z

-Primary Paper and pencils for each student

-Notecards with words from letter box

-Copies of the book "Chuck and Chad Get Lunch"

-"Fill in the Missing Letters in Short U Words" Worksheet

1.Introduce the u=/u/ with the picture of the caveman and explain how to find it in words.  "Today we are going to find the letter u in words that we hear, see, and even say! The letter u makes the /u/ sound. Watch how my mouth moves when I say the letter u.  Turn to your neighbor and watch their mouth as they make the /u/ sound. This is like the sound we make when we don't know what to do. When we say the /u/ sound everyone put their hands up and look confused as you say "Uhhhhh" just like the caveman in the picture."

2.  Use the tongue tickler to help children begin to identify phonemes in spoken words. "I am going to say our tongue tickler for /u/ and then I want you to repeat it after me. Each time you hear the /u/ sound, put your hands up and look confused like the caveman in our picture. "Uncle was upset because he was unable to put his umbrella up."

3. To practice recognizing the letter u in written text, the teacher will write two words on the board. One will have the short u vowel and the other will not (like sub and bad) Ask students to help you find the word with the /u/ sound.  The teacher is going to ask aloud to the class "Do I hear /u/ in su-u-u-u-b or ba-a-a-d?" (Allow students to try to answer) Then say, "I hear the uhhh /u/ sound in sub, not bad."  Do a few more of these kinds of words and tell them to put their hands up and look confused like the caveman when they hear the /u/ sound.

4. Draw the letterboxes on the board to use during this part of the lesson.
 Give each student a letterbox and letter tiles. "We are going to practice spelling words with the /u/ sound.  Look at the board and see how there are three spaces for three mouth moves. Right now, I am going to spell the word "fuzz".  The first box is for the first sound in fuzz, the /f/. Remember how the /u/ sound makes the sound the caveman is? The /u/ goes in the second box.  The last box is for the last sound, /zz/. Now, students practice with the following words: (2) - up (3) - tub, cut, fun, sat, ten. (4)-stuck."  Do the words on the board, so students can check their answers. Remember to count the sounds with the number of boxes.

5. Have the letterbox words written on note cards.
 Show students the model word. "We are going to read the word "tub".  Let's start with the /u/, now let's add the /t/, this gives us the sound /tu/. It's time to add the last sound /b/, which makes/tub/.  Now, let's say the whole word- tub." Continue doing this with all the words from the letterbox.

6. The students will read
"Chuck and Chad Get Lunch". The teacher will give a book talk before pairing students up: "This book is about two friends who want to eat some lunch. Let's read to find out where they will go to eat and what they will have for lunch."

Assessment:   Students will complete an activity sheet.  The worksheet has 10 different words that contain "u," and have various missing letters for the students to fill in.  There are also pictures that they can color after completing the words.   

• "
Chuck and Chad Get Lunch", by Bridget Clabby

• "/u/ says Uhhhhh?" by  
Brittany Cofer

• "Fill in the Missing Letters in Short U Words" Page











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