"Mmm-mmm Good"

Emergent Literacy Design

Sydney Anderson


Rationale: This lesson will help children identify /m/, the phoneme represented by M. Students will learn to recognize /m/ in spoken words by learning a meaningful representation (rubbing my stomach and saying mmm-mmm good), practicing finding /m/ in words, and apply phoneme awareness with /m/ in phonetic cue reading by distinguishing rhyming words from beginning letters.


Materials:  Primary paper


                   Chart with "On Monday Michael's mother Mary mostly mopped"

                   Drawing paper


                   Matt and his Mom (Puffin Books, 1991)

                   Word cards with MIX, MAT, MAKE, MARK, MAN, BAT, FAKE,


                   Assessment worksheet identifying pictures with /m/




1. "Learning language can be a tricky thing, so today we are just going to focus on one letter. The letter is "m".  Our mouth moves as we say words. Today we're going to work on spotting the move our mouth makes when we say /m/. We spell /m/ with letter M (write on the board). M is the sound we make when we rub our stomach after eating something good."


2. "Let's pretend like we just ate something really yummy. Rub your tummy and say 'mmmmm'.  Did you notice what your mouth did when you said 'mmm'? When we say /m/, our lips are pressed together. Try it again: 'mmmm'."


3. "Let me show you how to find /m/ in the word mat. I'm going to stretch mask out in super slow motion and listen for the m sound, like we said in "mmm-mmm good". Mmmm-aa-tt. Slower: Mmm-aa-tt. There it was! I felt my lips press together and produce the /m/ sound."


4. "Let's try a tongue tickler [written on chart]. On Monday Michael's mother Mary mostly mopped. Everybody say it three times together. Now say it again, and this time, stretch the /m/ at the beginning of the words. 'On Mmmmmmonday's Mmmichael's mmmother Mmmary mmmostly mmmmops.' Try it again, and this time break it off the word: 'On Mmm-onday's Mmm-ichael's mmm-om Mmm-ary mmm-ostly mmm-ops.'


5. Have students take out primary paper and pencil. I will model how to write the lowercase m, on the dry erase board marked with lines. Say: "For the lowercase m, take your pencil and start at the fence. Go all the way down to the sidewalk, and come back up to the fence, making a hump as you bring your pencil back down to the sidewalk. Do the same thing, come back up to the fence and make another hump and go straight back down to the sidewalk. I want you to make five lowercase m's on your paper."


 6. "Now we are going to practice recognizing the /m/ sound. "Do you hear /m/ in mother or father? [call on student] Do you hear /m/ in nickel or dime? [call on student] Do you hear /m/ in marker or crayon? [call on student] Do you hear /m/ in toy or game? [call on student]. Let's see how well you can spot the /m/ sound and the mouth move /m/ in words. Rub your tummy if you hear /m/: The, man, made, Jack, move, over, and, march, down, the, street.


7. "Let's look at the book Matt and His Mom. This book talks about all of the errands Matt and his mom are going to do today. To find out what Matt and his mom do, we need to read the book!" After reading, I will tell the students to draw a picture of another food Matt and his mom could have bought that has the /m/ sound in it. I will display their work.


8. Lastly, I will guide the students in an exercise to help them distinguish between rhyming words that have /m/ in them. I will write the word MUG on the board and think out loud to students, "is this mug or tug?" I will tell them that the m tells me to rub my tummy –"mmm mmm good." I will say mug very slow and then say tug very slow. I will model how you only rub your tummy when reading the word mug, not tug. Then I will tell them to try: MIX- mix or fix? MAT- bat or mat? MAKE- make or fake? MAN- can or man? MARK- mark or dark?


9. For assessment, distribute the worksheet. Students are to complete the partial spellings and color the pictures that begin with M. Call students individually to read the phonetic cue words from step #8.




Albright, Kasey, "Making M's is Magnificent!", http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/doorways/albrightkel.htm


Bowman, Rachel, "Slither Like a Snake With S" http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/journeys/bowmanel.htm


Assessment worksheet:



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