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The Letters "U" and "P"

Hi, this is Chad Aldeman. I'm an education researcher at Georgetown University and a parent of two kids in Virginia.

I started Read Not Guess to help you, as parents and caregivers, support your child's early reading skills from home.

You'll receive short email lessons three times a week, on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. They should take no more than 5-10 minutes a day to work through with your child.

The lessons will focus on building your child's awareness of how letters correspond to sounds, how sounds blend into words, and how words create sentences. Both parent and child will need to be able to see the screen.

Today we’re going to work on the letters “U” and “P.”

Let’s get started.

Today’s Letter Sounds

Today we’re going to learn the letter "U." It makes the “uh” sound as in "us" or "sun."






Ask your child to make the “uh” sound 3 times as they point to the letters:

u u u Ask your child if they can think of any words that have the “uh” sound. If they need help, the words under, uncle, and umbrella all start with the “uh” sound.

Have them say the “uh” sound 3 more times as they point to the letters:

u u u

Now we’re going to learn the letter "P." It should sound like a short puff of air, as in the words "pat" or "top." Please correct your child and have them keep practicing if they're saying it as a long "puuuhhh" sound. It should be quick.

Ask your child to make a quick “p” sound 3 times as they point to the letters:

p p p Ask your child if they can think of any words that start with the “p” sound. If they need help, the words park, pizza, and party all start with the “p” sound.

Have them say the quick “p” sound 3 more times as they point to the letters:

p p p Note: Check out this short YouTube video if you want to hear all the sounds in the English language, including the "p" sound, spoken aloud correctly. This may also be good resource to come back to as we progress through more lessons.


Word Practice

Now we’re going to work on “blending” letter sounds into words. Your child can start slowly by saying each sound individually, but each time, they should try to say it just a bit faster.

Ask your child to say the correct sounds as they point to the letters:

u p u p up Congratulations, they just read the word “up!”

(Make sure they read the word as "up" and not "uh-puh." Have them keep reading it faster until they can read it correctly in a normal speaking voice.)

Now we’re going to read another word. Your child can start slowly by saying each sound individually, but each time, they should try to say it just a bit faster.

Ask your child to say the correct sounds as they point to the letters:

p u p p u p pup

Congratulations, they just read the word “pup!”

Overnight Challenge

Ask your child to find 3 things in your house that start with the “p” sound. After that, see if they can name 3 things that end with the short “p” sound.

That’s it for today. We’ll see you Wednesday,

~Chad

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