Lesson Plan:

The Extraordinary Letter E

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October 9, 2015
by Taryn Boullear

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to verbalize the short E sound. Students will be able to identify words with the initial and medial short 'e' sound.


Introduction (5 minutes)

  • Begin the lesson by activating your students' prior knowledge about the alphabet, specifically vowels and consonants. Ask questions like: What are consonants? What are vowels? How many vowels are in the alphabet?
  • After some discussion, explain to the class that vowels are the letters a, e, i, o, and u.
  • Tell your class that today, they will be learning about the vowel E.
  • Demonstrate the short e sound (/e/) to your class. Ask them to repeat the sound back to you.
  • Using an interactive whiteboard or computer, play the Short E Dot-to-Dot for your class.

Explicit Instruction/Teacher Modeling (10 minutes)

  • Divide your whiteboard in half using a dry erase marker.
  • On one side, hang an image of a word that begins with the short E sound, such as egg or elephant.
  • On the opposite side, hang an image of a word that has a medial short E sound, such as bed or web.
  • Explain to your students that the /e/ sound can be found at the beginning of words, such as egg. Point to the picture on the board and say the word aloud, emphasizing the short E sound.
  • Explain that the /e/ sound can also be found in the middle of words, such as bed. Point to the picture on the board and say the word aloud, emphasizing the short E sound.
  • Tape the word cards for egg and bed (or whatever your examples are) under each picture.
  • Together with your class, say and spell each word.

Guided Practice/Interactive Modeling (20 minutes)

  • Stick the rest of the short E image cards on one side of the whiteboard.
  • Stick the rest of the short E word cards on the opposite side of the whiteboard.
  • Go through the images one by one, calling on student volunteers to say the name of each object.
  • Point to each word card and pronounce the words one by one. Ask your class to repeat each word after you.
  • Choose student volunteers to help you match each image to its word card. Have each student place the word card under its corresponding image.
  • Repeat the words as a class, one by one. Once you've finished, ask your class some comprehension questions. Great examples include: Which words have the short E sound at the beginning? Which words have the short E sound in the middle?

Independent Working Time (10 minutes)

  • Pass out a copy of the Short E Sound worksheet to each student.
  • Instruct the class to sound out each picture on the worksheet to determine if they have the short E sound. Tell them to circle pictures with the short E sound.
  • As your students work, walk around the classroom to answer questions and assist in helping students sound out words.



  • Enrichment: Introduce students who have successfully grasped the short E sound to the long E sound. Ask them to tell you the difference between the two, and to give you some examples of long E words. Alternatively, have these students compare the /e/ sound to other short vowels, such as the /a/ or /i/ sounds.
  • Support: Assist students who are struggling by giving them a list of short E words. Visually distinguish the "e" in each word by highlighting it in another color. Discuss how the /e/ sound is different than other vowel sounds.

Related Books and/or Media


Assessment (5 minutes)

  • Once the class has finished, ask some comprehension questions to assess their retention of information about the /e/ sound. Great questions include: What sound does the short E make? What are some words that begin with the /e/ sound? What are some words that have the /e/ sound in the middle?

Review and Closing (15 minutes)

  • Divide the class into two groups.
  • Give each group three sentence strips.
  • Instruct your students to read each sentence. As a group, they must identify all of the words with the /e/ sound and circle them.
  • Guide your students as they read their sentences.
  • To close the lesson, hand out the Short E Words worksheet as homework.

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