How do you teach phonics to children? There are a variety of methods. One ideal way is to present your students, home-schooling children, or ESL learners with memorable phonetic stories.
This particular article features the ‘letter B’ story called “Bobby’s brownies and Bill’s boat.”
Accompanying this story, you get six things:
1. Story text included in this article (scroll below)
2. Illustrated PDF file you can download and print of this story to use with your reading groups.
Please note: The text is extra large. If a word begins with the letter B, the ‘b’ is written using a bold red font to help students with their reading practice. If the letter ‘b’ appears in the middle or the end of the word, it is written with a bold royal blue font. See the slideshow for an example.
3. Slideshow that shows you what the PDF story file looks like
4. Video of the story that you can play for your students
5. Photo of the Zeb and Deb Phonics puppets to post in your classroom
6. Coloring sheet of the Zeb and Deb Phonics puppets
This series of phonics strategies and activities are couched in a program called ‘Zeb and Deb phonics’. They are built around a brother-and-sister puppet team with light-purple skin that the author created and named Zeb and Deb.
Zeb and Deb phonics letter b tale: Bobby’s brownies and Bill’s boat
© 2011 story and 2012 program by Debbie Dunn
Introduction: Bobby makes some blonde brownies. When his brother, Bill, asked to have one, Bobby tried to bribe his big brother for something he wanted. What will happen next?
Chapter 1: Bobby bakes blonde brownies
Bobby Baker was busy baking some brownies. They were blonde brownies.
He mixed the batter in a big bowl. In the bowl, Bobby put some flour, some brown cage-free eggs, some butter, some baking powder, a little bit of salt, some brown sugar, some brown vanilla extract, and some butterscotch chips. He used a blender or mixer to blend it all together.
Bobby poured the brownie batter into the baking pan. He put the brownies into the oven. He pushed the “BAKE” button. Then he read a baseball book while he waited.
The timer bell rang. Bobby took the batch of brownie out of the oven to cool. He said, “Phew! I’m glad they aren’t burnt. These brownies look beautiful.”
Then Bobby bent his head over the pan and sniffed. “Mmmmmm! That smells so good.”
Bobby picked up a butter knife. He cut the brownies into nine big pieces.
Each brownie had some butterscotch chips. Some brownies had five chips. Some brownies had more than five chips. Some brownies had less than five chips.
Chapter 2: Bobby and his big brother, Bill
Just then, Bobby’s big brother walked into the room. His name was Bill.
Bill said, “This room smells great. What did you bake?”
Bobby said, “I baked some blonde brownies with butterscotch chips.”
Bill begged, “May I have one?”
Bobby said, “Let’s barter. I will give you a brownie if we can play with that brand new boat you got for your birthday.”
Bill said, “Bobby, you did not have to bribe me like that. I am willing to share my boat with you because you are my brother.”
Bobby felt bad and blushed bright red. He said, “Oops! I’m sorry if I behaved like a brat. Uh, …, yes, you may have a brownie.”
Bill said, “Thank you.”
Bill picked up a brownie and took a great big bite. He said, “Bravo, Bobby! I believe these brownies are the best you have ever made. They are beyond good. They are yummy in my belly.”
Bobby said, “I don’t want to brag or boast, but I think they are really good, too. Can we go out back and play with your boat now?”
Bill said, “Yes, we can.”
Bobby said, “I will bring some snacks while you go get your boat.”
Bill nodded and left the room. He said, “Please bring a beverage, too.”
Bobby grabbed a basket. In the basket, he put two bananas, some potato chips, two brownies, a bunch of jelly beans, two Butterfinger candy bars, and a bottle of Blueberry Kool-Aid each. He thought, “I hope we don’t get a bellyache.”
Bill went to his bedroom and got his black boat.
Then the brothers met beneath the bridge. Both boys were barefooted.
They walked by the brook and went all the way to the bay. They played on the beach with the black boat on the blue water until their mother rang the bell for dinner.
Both boys had a blast.
PDF file download of story
Click here to get the PDF download of the Zeb and Deb phonics story called “Bobby’s brownies and Bill’s boat.”
- Zeb and Deb phonics letter b tale: Bobby’s brownies and Bill’s boat
Other important links
- Video – Zeb and Deb Phonics presents Bobby’s brownies and Bill’s boat
To help make this program more fun for your students, here is a two-page PDF file that includes a photograph of Zeb and Deb that you could print, laminate, and post in your classroom. The second page is a coloring page for your students to color and keep. To get this file, click the link below:
- Zeb and Deb Phonics photo plus Zeb and Deb Phonics coloring page
Links to six correlating worksheets
By clicking here, you will get access to seven vocabulary worksheets that correlate with the tale about Bobby and Bill.
(links coming very soon)
1. Zeb and Deb phonics: Can you SPY the ‘B’ vocabulary words? Part 1 of 4
2. Zeb and Deb phonics: Can you SPY the ‘B’ vocabulary words? Part 2 of 4
3. Zeb and Deb phonics: Can you SPY the ‘B’ vocabulary words? Part 3 of 4
4. Zeb and Deb phonics: Can you SPY the ‘B’ vocabulary words? Part 4 of 4
5. Zeb and Deb phonics letter A grocery cart challenge: Game 1 of 3
6. Zeb and Deb phonics letter A grocery cart challenge: Game 2 of 3
7. Zeb and Deb phonics letter A grocery cart challenge: Game 3 of 3
To make it more convenient to find all the parts of the Zeb and Deb Phonics program, please visit the Zeb and Deb Phonics website. That website is organized by each phonogram. If a phonogram makes more than one sound, there is a separate page for each sound.
Within that page, you will find all the links for that particular sound. Click on the link. It will take you to the specific rootshed.com page that gives you access to that sound’s stories, worksheets, videos, and more.
Here’s the Zeb and Deb Phonics webpage for letter B:
- Zeb and Deb Phonics letter B phonics activities
As a new sound gets featured, that link will then become live.
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