Home‎ > ‎

My Bouncing Bulldog's Beating Heart

My Bouncing Bulldog’s Beating Heart

Emergent Literacy Design

By: Catie Dennis


Rationale: It is important that students become readers with confidence and are able to spell and read all words. In order to meet mastery in these areas it is important that students are able to recognize the phonemes that are found in spoken words. This lesson will help students identify the phoneme /b/. The phoneme represented by B. Students will learn to recognize /b/ in spoken words by learning a meaningful representation (the sound a heat beat makes) and the letter symbol B, practicing finding /b/ in words, and apply phoneme awareness with /b/ in phonetic cue reading by distinguishing rhyming words from beginning letters.


1.    Primary paper and pencil

2.    Picture of a Bulldog

3.    Chart with “Ben’s brother bent Ben’s baseball bat”

4.    Drawing paper and crayons

5.    Word cards with: bat, base, band, boat, ball, bake

6.    Assessment worksheet identifying pictures with /b/.

7.    Book entitled: Belly Button Book


1.    Teacher says: Our written language is a secret code. The tricky part though is learning what all the different letters stand for or the mouth moves we make as we say words or letters. Today, we are going to work on how the mouth moves when making a /b/. We spell /b/ with the letter B. The B almost looks like 2 balls that may be bouncing.

2.    Lets pretend that we are the bulldog’s heartbeat. He just got done bouncing up and down in excitement. Place your hand over your chest. Pat your chest slowly saying /b/,/b/, /b/. This is what the bulldog’s heartbeat sounds like! What are your lips doing as we make a /b/? Should we start with our mouths opened or closed? Say: Lets all bring our lips close together and push them out with lots of air making a big /b/. 

3.    Now, let me show you how to find /b/ in the word boat. I am going to stretch it out slowly to find the /b/ like a heartbeat. Bbbbbb – oooaa- tt. Slower: BBbbbbbbbbbb-ooooaaaa-ttttttFound it! I felt my lips come together and let out a bust of air to create a /b/ just like the bulldogs heartbeat.

4.    Lets now try a tongue twister. “Ben’s brother bent Ben’s baseball bat.” Everyone say this 3 times together. Now say it again by slowly. Lets stretch out the /b/ at the beginning of the words. “Bbbbbens Bbbbbrother bbbbbent bbbbbbens bbbbbasebbbbball bbbbbat. Try it again and this time, break it off the word. “ /b/ ens /b/ rother /b/ ent /b/ ens /b/ase /b/all /b/ at.

5.    (Students should now take out primary paper and a pencil) We use the letter B to create a /b/. A capital B looks like two balls stacked on top or each other with a baseball bat lying beside them. Now, lets write the lowercase letter b. Start at the rooftop and make straight line down to the sidewalk and bound back up and a right to create a circle. The lowercase b only has one ball when an uppercase B has two balls.  I want everyone to write 10 lowercase b’s for practice.

6.    The teacher will call out questions to the whole class and have students answer them by raising their hands. The teacher will ask them what do you do with your mouth that makes you realize you are making a /b/? Do you hear /b/ in baby or child? Do you hear /b/ in bacon or turkey? Do you hear a /b/ in camp or bike? Lets see if you can spot the mouth move /b/ in some words. Place your hand over your chest signaling a heart beat sound if you hear the /b/: The, band, member, played, a, big, baritone, before, his, busy, day.

7.    Now were going to read: Belly Button Book by Sandra Boynton 

Booktalk – This story is about hippos and how they feel about their belly buttons! The main hippo in the story tells us about many things he likes which may be his belly button most of all! Lets read the story to find out all that the hippo likes.

After reading say: Now that we have read out book once lets read it again and look for all the /b/ found all throughout the story. Every time that you hear the /b/ sound; place your hand over your chest to represent the /b/ heartbeat.  Ask your students, “Can you think of any other silly words that begin with a /b/?” For example: I think that belly button is a funny word! Have the student’s draw a picture that represents there silly word or invented spelling using the paper and crayons.

8.    Show BAND and model how to decide if its band or sand? The B shows us two balls which says /b/. We hear the /b/ when we say band but not when we say sand. Now you try some: BALL: call or ball? CAKE: bake or cake? BOOK: book or cook? SIT: sit or bit? BANG: sang or bang?

9.    For assessment, distribute the worksheet. Students are to write the letter b and B; and color the pictures that begin with B. Call students individually to read the phonetic cue words from step #8.



Belly Button Book by Sandra Boynton:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/belly-button-book-sandra-boynton/1016089712?ean=9780761137993

Lamberth, Meredith – Benny Brown Bear https://sites.google.com/site/mslamberthsreadingdesigns/beginning-reading-design/emergent-literacy-design

Lewis, Caitlyn - Baby Bears Beating Heart.  http://www.auburn.edu/~cel0022/lewisel.htm 

Rice, Katie – Bouncing the Ball with B. http://www.auburn.edu/~ksr0009/RiceEL.htm

Worksheet Assessment: 

 Super Teacher Worksheets: http://www.superteacherworksheets.com/phonics-beginningsounds/letter-b_WFFMM.pdf 

 Click here to return to the Metamorphoses index: Metamorphoses Index